E-Commerce Web Design

An E-Commerce web design creates pages with the specified branding, content, and navigation. The coding focuses on HTML and SEO and not on backend development. Different creative specialties include copywriting, photography, and graphic arts.

Branding

Website branding provides a unique look and feels for the website. The web designer implements branding by developing a template or website theme.

Look and Feel

There are significant differences in what e-commerce websites need. The template is the look and feel of the website. Reusing it for every page makes the process more efficient and accurate. However, the standard template requirements are:

Category Page

E-Commerce SEO A listing or category page offers users a collection of links to product detail pages. It typically contains a vertical stack of listing widgets. Individual listing widgets can appear on other pages, such as checkout. Placing them on different pages reminds users of other items they may want with the items in the shopping cart. The products in a list may come from multiple sources. The list may mix multiple lists, only selecting the ones with the highest probability of increasing the sales volume. Familiar listing sources are:

Product Details Page

A product details page lists a single product. It includes the price, inventory levels, and options for adding it to the shopping cart. A well-designed page:

Shopping Cart

The shopping cart design should make the buying decision as frictionless and natural as possible. Popular design features include:

Checkout Workflow

The checkout tends to be the most sensitive time of the online experience. An early step is collecting contact details, enabling abandoned cart recovery. User login can collect contact data before the purchase process starts. However, most users want to see the products before creating an account.

Forcing user accounts causes some users to drop out. Leveraging 3rd party applications like Facebook and Gmail to authenticate accounts is a better option. It takes no typing, can provide additional details, and will be free of typos.

Template Design

The template generates the HTML for the web page. It encompasses the front end of the website presented to the internet.

Content Management System

Popular website creation tools double as a Content Management System (CMS). The challenges with the approach include:

Technical SEO

Technical SEO is on-page content but invisible to the user. It is metadata helping internet applications work better with the website. Those applications include search engines and social media platforms. The data it provides includes: Category pages have unique SEO considerations. If it lacks content, it makes more sense to rank the product details page. However, it makes more sense if the products frequently change and searches happen on generalized terms. Either way, the web design implements the SEO strategy.

Data-Driven Marketing

Data-driven marketing collects and analyzes website data to support decision-making. The template integrates the HTML capability to collect high-quality and granular metrics. The data of interest includes:

Performance

The web design significantly impacts page load times. Most Content Management Systems (CMS) parse many files and issue many database queries to reconstruct each page while the user waits. It is far more efficient to send static files. A performant web design has the following features:

Quality Management

Quality management collects metrics used to analyze the system. Collecting data from the web browser makes it more accurate and relevant to the operational user experience. The resulting reports help identify issues before they impact users and speed up debugging operational challenges. A complete set of data covers:

User Flow

Template Design

The user flow, User Experience (UX), or sales funnel is the navigation and functionality of the website. The following flow is a sample navigation flow that gets cooked into the web design. It shows many options to recover abandoned carts because that provides the most value to the business. At the same time, suspected card fraud puts the user onto a page with no return and sends an update to the firewall. Abaddon cart recovery through email and text messages is a separate flow unrelated to the web design.User Flow for Purchase

Page Structure

The template design significantly impacts how the page interacts with the internet. A suitable method automatically and accurately populates the metadata used to improve SEO, security, and page response time. It generates syntactically correct HTML that does not leave the browser guessing how to render the page. Pages get tested for backward and forward compatibility.Product Shipping

Shopping Cart

The shopping cart window contains a list of products to purchase. The products in the window allow easy review of the items by linking to the product details page. A link on each page makes it easy for the user to start the purchase flow at any time. Overlaying the shopping cart window on the website makes easy navigation more obvious. Creating the page with browser-side code produces the cart instantaneously.

Payment Pages

The design of the payment page is critical to maximizing sale completions. If the sale does not complete, it maximizes abandoned cart recoveries. Typical features include:

Localization

The design for localization seeks to minimize page maintenance by reusing as much as possible across languages. The best practice for SEO is to put each language under a separate domain name using the country-specific top-level domain, like .ca for Canada. Localization can default based on the geolocation of the IP address or the language settings in the browser. E-Commerce sites using a different merchant bank in each country tend to suffer less from fraud-related issues.

Payment Processing

Processing payments is core to an e-commerce website. It includes the payment workflows to manage returns, prevent fraud, and minimize merchant banking fees. Capabilities that benefit the merchant are:Credit Card Processing

Page Response Time

E-Commerce websites should have sub-second page response times over large geographic regions. The following chart shows the URL latency for 100,000 local business sites. There are many ways to speed up response times, and the following have the most impact.URL Latencies

URL Redirection

Redirection is when the web server instructs the browser to load a different page. Those pages are faster, follow SEO guidelines, and are easier to maintain. For example, the user connects to HTTP and redirects to HTTPS. All links within the website, exported to search engines, and backlinks to the website should go to the URL with the content, not a redirection. The following chart shows the average page slowdown caused by redirection.Page Load Time by Number of Redirects

URL Count Per Page

Most Content Management Systems (CMS) used to build a website generate a lot of excess links. An excessive number means the page has many downloads and slows down the page. The following chart highlights the issue with CSS files. The Google recommendation is to embed CSS into the web page, meaning there are zero CSS files. However, websites have a lot, as shown in the following chart.CSS Links per Web Page