Your website’s design is more than just the face of your online business. It’s digital handshake that greets your customers. It needs to captivate your audience, keep them engaged, and make the sales process as simple as possible.
With this in mind, it’s not a stretch to assume that a poorly-designed website will end up hurting you financially. If viewers don’t like (or can’t navigate) your store, how can you expect to convert them to customers? Though poor design can definitely hurt you, the opposite is also true—an effectively designed website can be your secret weapon for a more profitable business.
Function and Form
We all know that a well-functioning site is essential for a successful online business. But how much impact can it really have? Let’s take a look at the numbers.
Research compiled by Kissmetrics showed that almost half of web users expect your site to load in two seconds or less. After three seconds, you’ll have lost 40 percent of them. On top of that, 79 percent of shoppers who experience site performance issues won’t be back to buy again.
The fundamental problem here is lack of consumer patience—we have too many shopping options these days to wait for the slow starters. It doesn’t matter how effective and perfectly-crafted your web design, call-to-action, and UI might be. If your site can’t perform, your business is dead in the water.
A streamlined web platform is critical to high conversion rates and keeping customers on your page. Run tests of your site’s performance on various devices and across different locations to make sure your back-end development is pulling its weight.
How can you judge the effectiveness of your web design without some concrete data to back you up?
Sales metrics like bounce rate, conversion rates, and customer retention can offer some insight here. Check out the Analytic tools provided by Google for a quick primer in this area. These analytics can tell you from where your visitors arrive, where they go on your page, and what actions they take before purchasing.
Is nobody clicking your call-to-action? It might need to be repositioned on your page, or rewritten altogether. Do visitors leave your page immediately after arriving? A high bounce rate suggests problems with your navigation or homepage layout. Do customers buy but rarely return? Product quality or poor customer service may be to blame. Review these metrics to get a more in-depth idea of how your site is performing.
Of course, truly exceptional ecommerce platforms go beyond basic functionality and metric tracking to get their message across. The best revenue-generating website design for your business will be a style that highlights the originality of your brand.
Consider Luhsetea’s website, an ecommerce platform designed around specialty teas. This website’s striking visual flair goes way beyond what you’d expect to see from a tea distributor. Their stylistic choices telegraph the laid-back, fun-loving nature of Luhsetea’s brand, and suggests a unique experience for each customer that other tea vendors can’t match.
Another great example is Italian distributor Hardgraft. Their simple web design style puts their product line in the spotlight. Rather than distracting consumers with busy-looking navigation and special offers, their minimalist design functions more like an art gallery exhibit, letting the quality of the product speak for itself.
Finding this unique value is one of the trickiest parts of aligning your web design with your ecommerce platform. Professional web development boutiques excel in this area, offering competitive insight and a practiced hand during the design process. When your site isn’t performing as well as you’d like, calling in the pros can be the easiest way to start making some value-generating changes to your business.