These days, it has become easier than ever before to build an e-commerce website in just a few days and start selling.
But do all the e-commerce businesses get sales & revenue?
According to a number of sources – including Forbes – 90% of e-commerce start-up businesses fail within the first 120 days.
What could be the reason?
Well, there could be several reasons behind the failure of an e-commerce business however lack of an efficient website is one of the major reasons.
You can’t simply hire a website builder and rely on him or her to build your e-commerce store. You should know all of the basic yet essential features that your online store must have.
In this blog post, we have shared 8 very basic yet essential features that your website developer should provide you with for your e-commerce website.
Let’s get started!
#1 Attractive design
The design of any website is the major force that drives the users either away or towards it.
Having said above, you can take your time and do thorough research on your competitors’ websites before you settle on any design for your own website.
The design of your e-commerce website must also be according to your products’ theme. For eg. if you want to sell flowers online, you should not choose a black website design however if you are selling premium products like diamonds, a black theme would be suitable for you.
A professional & experienced website designer should always know the best colors and design/structure that’s suitable for your website.
#2 Responsive design
Not only a great design, but your e-commerce website should have a responsive design too. In other words, your website must be responsive (mobile-friendly).
No matter how good your website design is, if it’s not mobile-friendly or responsive, it’s of no use.
Why responsiveness is so important?
- A responsive website design helps in search engine optimization which means more traffic and more sales for your e-commerce website.
- A responsive design enhances the user experience which means your potential buyers will find it easier to navigate your website and as a result, you get more conversions.
Given the fact that more than 60% of internet surfers use their mobile devices to find their desired information or products, it does make complete sense for any e-commerce business to have a responsive website.
Recommended post: What are the benefits of responsive website design
#3 Easy products management
An e-commerce website development is not a one-time thing. You can’t just set up, shut it and forget it. You do need to update the products on your e-commerce store regularly.
Therefore, your website must allow you to manage the products easily & hassle-free so that you don’t need a web developer each time you want to update or add any product.
Given the above scenario, you must ensure that your website builder has used an easy-to-use CMS like WordPress for developing your website.
With the WordPress CMS, you can manage the products like a pro, even if you don’t possess any technical skills.
Below are some of the important things that you must be able to manage on your e-commerce store:
- Adding new categories.
- Adding new products and their details (like description, images, inventory, etc. ) & assigning them to their respective categories.
- Editing the existing product details or categories.
- Publishing or unpublishing any of the products.
- Changing the price & variations (like size, colors, etc. ) for any product.
Once you are able to take control of your e-commerce website, you can confidently run your online business.
#4 Security enabled
This is the area where most web designers as well as e-commerce business owners don’t pay attention to. They pay attention to security only when their websites get infected with viruses or even worst when hacked.
Don’t let this happen to you.
You must consider security as one of the essential features of your e-commerce website development.
Therefore, when you hire any website builder, you must ask him or her about their plans to make your website secure.
Why security is crucial to any online business?
- Your customers won’t trust your business if they see any security breach on your website.
- Your website may lose search engine rankings if it’s infected with viruses.
- You may not get any sales or conversions if your website is insecure.
- You may even face some other legal complications in case of any data theft because of the security glitches.
You wouldn’t want to be in trouble because of any of the above-listed reasons, right? So, you must consider your website’s security as an essential feature.
#5 Easy-to-use CMS
Not only products but managing the contents & other important areas of your e-commerce store is also essential.
Below are some of the important sections of your website that you must be able to manage yourself:
- Contents of web pages such as about us, contact us, etc.
- Testimonials on your website.
- Discount codes/coupons.
- Meta tags (for SEO)
- Website settings such as admin email, password, etc.
- Contact form submissions
By taking full ownership of your website, you don’t only speed up the process of your website updates, but you also save your web development cost, which you may pay eventually by hiring your website developer for making small changes every now and then.
Recommended post: 6 Most common CMS platforms to develop an eCommerce website
#6 SEO enabled
Without SEO (search engine optimization), you may not be able to get organic traffic on your e-commerce website. Less traffic means low sales. And the high volume of organic traffic on any website from SEO really means high sales & conversions.
So, SEO should be an integral part of your e-commerce business.
Did you know that SEO starts from the website itself? This means if you intend to get traffic from search engines like Google, you will have to optimize your website first.
Optimizing a website for SEO is also known as on-page SEO. On-page SEO is half SEO battle won if done correctly.
So, what’s that you must take care of on your e-commerce store for SEO? In other words, what are all the features your website developer must provide you with in order to make your website SEO-friendly?
Below are some of the essential SEO features that your e-commerce website must have:
- Easy management of meta tags.
- Auto-optimized images
- Google XML sitemap creation
- Internal linking among webpages
- Fast loading speed
Before you hire any website developer to build your website, you must ensure that he or she provides you with all the above-listed SEO features on your e-commerce store.
#7 Fast loading speed
Let’s face this hard fact that nobody has spare time to wait for your website to load for them. If you think that your users may wait for your web pages to load because your website looks great and you sell nice products, then perish that thought.
No matter how good your website looks or how good the quality of your products is, if your website doesn’t load quickly, most of your potential buyers will quit your website and may not return back again.
What a loss!
Below the why you must fix your slow loading website immediately:
- Website loading speed affects your Google rankings.
- The slow loading speed can damage the browsing experience of your users.
- You may lose sales when your website loads slow.
- Your potential buyers may doubt the credibility of your e-commerce store.
Don’t let any of the above consequences happen to you. Hire a website developer today & get your website’s loading speed fixed.
If you don’t have enough budget, you can also consider hiring Indian website builders to do this job for you at an affordable price.
Recommended post: 7 Ways to speed up your WordPress website
#8 Robust reporting
If you really want to grow your e-commerce business and fulfill all the deliveries efficiently, you must have a robust & solid reporting system on the backend of your e-commerce website.
In the absence of a solid reporting system, you may have to put a lot of time into doing all the fulfillment & reporting work yourself. It’s not only a wastage of time, but it may also increase the chances of human errors.
Below are some of the major reports that you may need to access frequently:
- Sales report
- Orders report
- Customers report
- Inventory report
- Discounts report
- Delivery report
- Products report
Therefore, your e-commerce developer must deliver a website for you that has an easy to use backend system for you to view & download the necessary reports in just a few seconds.