Monthly Archives: February 2014

Ecommerce Website Design, Professional Website Design, Ecommerce Web Design

Responsive Design Essential to Ecommerce Website Design Success

Responsive Design Essential to Ecommerce Website Design Success 

Maybe you’re reading this article at your desk, and the headline above is displayed across a 28-inch monitor that you could see just as easily from across your office. Perhaps you have pulled this site up on your laptop, and you’ve got 13 inches worth of screen to view. However, if you’re like the rising number of consumers around the world who browse, network, and shop online, chances are good that the screen you’re using right now fits in your hand — and you want the content you’re viewing to look great on that device. The one-size-fits-all nature of responsive Ecommerce Website Design is quickly becoming the standard in e-commerce, particularly with the rise in mobile device usage, and the notion that accessing a smartphone or tablet has become just as simple as using a traditional computer.

Ecommerce Web Design

Responsive Ecommerce Website Design

If you look at the statistics around mobile usage, it becomes clear why creating a better experience for smartphone and tablet users is so important. A typical American household contains an average of 5.7 mobile devices. Beyond U.S. borders, 56 percent of people own a smartphone, and half of them are using that device as their main connection to the Internet. Similarly, close to three-quarters of tablet users are making weekly purchases from those mobile devices.

The next building block in international e-commerce

Businesses have built out their online content to specifically target their audience. They have created e-catalogs, blogs, spec sheets, videos, and more. They have localized for key markets to ensure they connect with target buyers in their preferred languages, as well as taking into account other cultural considerations. The next step is to make sure those target buyers have a consistently superior user experience regardless of whether they shop from a desktop computer, a laptop, an iPad, or an Android. In other words, responsive Web design is the next must-have for ecommerce companies.

Today, brands need to ensure that their primary Web sites are optimized for local markets and multiple mobile devices. That entails not only configuring for any device, but also properly adjusting for the audience and its particular preferences and habits across the board. Responsive design meets these needs by adapting to any mobile screen resolution and creating an online environment that encourages increased conversions and ultimately, increased sales.

Among the benefits of responsive design are these key results:

Adjust once, distribute for multiple audiences

With a responsive Web site design, a brand can translate and localize core content for specific audiences in one fell swoop. By limiting the number of individual sites being adjusted, businesses can greatly reduce the risk of making mistakes by simplifying an already complex process.

Ecommerce Website Design

Responsive Ecommerce Website Design

Maintain consistent brand identity.

When a company creates a single site that can support multiple translations and multiple device form factors, it’s easier to deliver consistent brand messages and user experiences. Maintaining conformity across all platforms allows brands to establish loyalty and positive recognition among consumers across the globe.

Optimize for search.

Responsive Web sites are more Google-friendly for the very reason that they make it easier to share information across devices; when a company maintains a singular and streamlined presence across channels, search engines don’t have to track down multiple URLs. As a result, search results become more favorable for the brand.

Just as with other ecommerce website design strategies, responsive design is not foolproof. This approach won’t mask poor translation, for example, and it will not serve as a Band-Aid for a lack of localization. International e-commerce requires companies to build core sites that reflect their brands and speak to their target markets in an informed, relatable way. Once that foundation is in place, responsive design can help brands reach the growing number of consumers around the world who are increasingly as likely to shop from a smartphone or tablet as from a desktop or laptop computer.

For more information on ecommerce website design or making your website responsive and ready for business, please contact us at 866-642-7164 or email us here.

Ecommerce Website Design, Professional Website Design, Ecommerce Web Design

7 Ecommerce Web Design Trends for 2014

 

As more online retailers seek to provide a good mobile shopping experience, expect to see a significant number of Ecommerce Web Design changes in 2014. These redesigned sites are likely to follow many popular design trends that are currently impacting entertainment sites, publishing sites, and mobile applications.

Ecommerce platforms like Magento, Shopify, or even WooCommerce (on WordPress) can have a strong influence on how online shops are designed. This can make it more difficult for online merchants to simply redesign a site to keep up with the latest fad. But in 2014, even those sellers that take an “if it isn’t broken, don’t fix it” approach to website design may be forced to do some remodeling thanks to the continued growth in mobile Internet traffic. In fact, some predict that in 2014 mobile Internet usage will pass desktop Internet usage, and mobile-based ecommerce might account for 30 percent of Internet retail sales.

Given that ecommerce business are likely to be resigning to support mobile, these sites may also follow other important web design trends.

1. Responsive Design

Mobile is going to be the primary driver for ecommerce web design in 2014, but don’t expect Internet retailers to abandon desktop users. Rather, responsive design, which has already been a trend in ecommerce site design, will to continue to grow in popularity, allowing online sellers to provide a good shopping experience regardless of the device a shopper is using.

Ecommerce Web Design

As a subset, if you will, of responsive design, you may see more site designers using the CSS Flexible Box Layout Module.This is a proposed World Wide Web Consortium standard that is enjoying relatively good support across browsers, including at least partial support in Chrome 31, Firefox 25, Internet Explorer 10, Safari 7, Opera 18, iOS Safari 7, Android Browser 2.1, Blackberry Browser 10, and IE Mobile 10.

Three resources will help those unfamiliar with the Flexible Box Layout Module. These include CSS-Tricks’ “A Complete Guide to Flexbox”, the Mozilla Developer Network’s ”Using CSS Flexible Boxes,” and Philip Walton’s ”Solved by Flexbox”.

2. Finger Friendly Interfaces

The focus on mobile and what many call mobile-first site design is also likely to lead to more finger-friendly interfaces in 2014, since on tablets and smartphones most users are interacting with the web page using fingertips or, perhaps, a stylus.

In the context of ecommerce website design there are perhaps two impacts of the trend toward finger friendliness.

First, expect to see fewer content sliders. These sliders have long been popular on websites since they allow merchants to show a lot of information in a relatively small amount of screen space, but they tended to have relatively small next buttons that can make them a bit more difficult to manage on a smartphone.

Next, be on the lookout for larger navigation buttons and links, as site designers try to make it easier for shoppers to browse site hierarchies or click links.

3. Flat Design

Flat design can be seen in the Windows 8 interface, in Apple’s iOS 7, and in dozens of popular websites. This aesthetic tends to avoid drop shadows or similar — focusing on strong colors, and interesting fonts.

This design trend has a few advantages at present. It often leads to simple user interfaces that are relatively easy to make responsive. It tends to use graphics in a way that leads to relatively smaller file sizes and, therefore, faster loading pages, and it can be a differentiator for sites.

Sites like Canopy, which allows users to find and share products available on Amazon, offers a good example of how flat design is likely to be applied in ecommerce site design.

Ecommerce Website Design

4. More Content on One Page

In 2014, expect to see site designers and developers adding more content to individual pages in at least two ways.

Quick views, which allow shoppers to get additional product information without leaving a product category page, are likely to continue to grow in popularity since that makes it particularly easy for mobile shoppers to learn more about products without having to load additional pages.

Also look for pages to become longer, perhaps, even scrolling “infinitely” like Tumblr or Pinterest.

5. Interesting Fonts

Online typography has been exploding, if you will, in the past few years, and this trend is not going to slow down in 2014. Expect to see sites using distinctive, brand supporting fonts to convey an online store’s feel.

Professional Website Design

 

6. Great Big Graphics

This particular trend may seem counterintuitive in the context of mobile Internet use and the overall design to provide a better mobile experience. But it turns out that big graphics really is relative to screen size, and with a bit of good site development, designers can deliver big graphics appropriate for a user’s device.

Relatively larger graphics that link to products, also tend to make for finger-friendly user interfaces, which is another reason this trend will grow.

7. Video and Other Rich Content

Mobile video consumption is on the rise, more than doubling last year, so it is clear that consumers don’t mind watching videos on tablets or even on smartphones.

In this context, video gives online retailers an excellent medium for providing useful content and detailed product information. Look for more retailers to begin including video or other rich media content in content marketing and in product descriptions.

 

For more information on how to get your site ready for 2014 and beyond, give us a call at 866-642-7164 or email us directly here.