So you’ve just launched your business’ first e-commerce site. Congratulations! You have nothing else to worry about anymore, do you? Unfortunately, the struggle doesn’t end there. On top of maintaining the site and keeping it running, you constantly have to keep it updated and test its features now and again, especially new ones.
With that, here are some things you have to keep in mind when assessing the overall integrity of your e-commerce site. Be sure to thoroughly check these main components next time you have to do maintenance.
1. Strong search engine
Nowadays, people go to e-commerce sites searching for a specific thing, although they might also be inclined to browse some more afterward. One of the most critical assets on your site is your search engine. You need to have it primed to deliver fast, accurate, and up-to-date data every time a customer uses it to look something up on your site.
When setting up your site, look for one with a strong search engine and ensure that all your inventory and product descriptions are accurate and up-to-date to streamline processes and ensure customer satisfaction.
2. Easy navigation
When a customer arrives at your site for the first time, they want to get pointed in the right directions, so they know where everything is and know where to go if they need something. To achieve this, you want to provide a clear and comprehensive navigation experience. This means using the correct anchor text for links, the proper link placement, and a site design that doesn’t obstruct while still looking aesthetically pleasing.
You want your customers to be able to find the things they’re looking for quickly and easily. Provide quick and correctly labeled categories and drop-down menus on your sites. Navigation is also about your site’s design and how easy it is for users to read or see the text. But most importantly, you don’t want to confuse your customers or lead them astray.
3. Accessibility features
You want your site to be accessible to all audiences, and that includes disabled people. Accessibility features are a must-have for every site now. If you want your content to reach as many people as possible, the accessibility of your website is worth investing in.
For starters, you can have a color-blind feature or provide accurate captions on videos and audio for people with hearing deficiencies. You can also allow for the support of assistive technology and keyboard navigation. Add customization options that will enable users to change the font size or color based on their needs.
4. Support for mobile
Most consumers use their smartphones to shop and pay for everything. While you still can’t beat having a good old PC-compatible site, you want your site to have support for a mobile interface as well, as this is where most of your traffic will be coming from. A site without mobile support can look distorted and disjointed on a smartphone and could ‘turn off’ customers from using your site.
As much as possible, have mobile support for your site or, better yet, create your own smartphone app. It’s fast, efficient and can lead to more customer satisfaction in the future.
5. Buyer security
A lot of consumers, when shopping online, make safety one of their top priorities. After all, they’re sharing sensitive information, like their address and credit card information, online where hackers and other malware can easily get a hold of their data.
Give your buyers a reassuring level of security by encrypting all data and running regular security checks. Set up an anti-virus or malware protection and only use secure and completely safe channels for transactions. Your customers will thank you for the safety features, and they’ll feel like they can trust you more if you make their safety your priority.
6. Customer feedback
Your site is only as good as your customers’ opinions. Always have an open channel where customers can rate or comment about their experience using their sites, such as a feedback or review form. Getting customer feedback is vital for any business to know what they’re doing right and what they can improve on. After all, you want to make sure that your customers are getting the best experience. Where better to look for your feedback than from them?
Other than that, make sure to have an open and easily accessible customer service hotline or chat system where customers can directly ask about or give their honest opinions on your site. Customer service should be paramount to your business above all else, so it should be one of the very first things you set up.
Once you’ve set up your e-commerce site, you’re expected to maintain it to the best of your ability so that the information in it stays up-to-date and relevant. Keep these things in mind, and your site maintenance will be much easier and smoother than before.