5 Website Hacks For A Better User Experience

It’s 2017. By now, we all know how important good site design is, especially when it comes to reducing abandoned carts for eCommerce sites. However, creating an amazing site is never ending.

As shopping habits change eCommerce merchants have to adapt their site design to meet the demands of their consumers. Today we’ll take a look at five good eCommerce site design examples in 2017 and point out areas of opportunity that could make them great.

1. Visual Hierarchy

Orvis.com

Industry: Outdoors apparel/high end men’s and women’s apparel/outdoors gear

Orvis is a well known brand among outdoor enthusiasts and chino lovers alike. Their clothing has a reputation for being top-notch, and their fly fishing gear is some of the best offered in that industry.

orvis site design

Why it Works:

Orvis does a stellar job employing two best practices of eCommerce site design: high-quality photos and visual hierarchy.

Shopify noted that a lack of visual hierarchy is a common mistakes in site design. Per their post, “With a visual hierarchy in place, it’s easy to navigate a website because ations begin to become recognizable due to the site’s design.”

Orvis’s stie always has a large featured image that dominates everything above the fold, and it’s always high-quality. The image changes depending on their current promotion and seasonal shopping trends.

Opportunities for Improvement:

The homepage for Orvis is pretty tight, but they could clean up the navigation bar to achieve two things: instantly communicate a more refined (and therefore, more exclusive feeling) brand message and minimize distractions away from the featured image.

Kissmetrics has an entire article about the importance of navigation bar layout, and Orvis could fix their navigation to be more concise. Orvis also has too many items in their navigation, something that will impact SEO. For example, the MEN’s category looks like this:

orvis site design nav

According to Kissmetrics, “The more concise your navigation, the more home page authority will flow to interior pages, making them more likely to rank.”

2. Offer A Unique Value Proposition

Cariloha.com

Industry: Home furnishing/apparel

Cariloha is a company with a good unique value proposition (UVP). Their entire line of products is made from replenishable stocks of bamboo. From bed sheets to shirts, they have a pervasive message of being eco-friendly that shapes their entire shopping experience.

cariloha site design

Why it Works:

What’s so great about Cariloha’s site is that they’re exceptional at communicating their UVP.  Per an article from Crazy Egg, “value proposition is the #1 factor influencing whether a visitor to your website will ‘peace out’ or continue reading.”

Cariloha does that immediately by putting their product front and center. Below the fold you see headlines about bamboo mattresses, and product descriptions go out of their way to list the positive aspects of sourcing product from renewable resources.

Their nav bar is simple and clean. That’s a huge plus from a design and SEO standpoint.

Opportunities for Improvement:

Cariloha owns a few other brands – Del Sol and PW – and having their logos in the top-left corner are useful. However, they could consolidate all of those Brands into one site to take advantage of improved SEO. Large site like Gap have done this for improved SEO. 

3. Font Selection

Farer.com

Industry: Watches

This high-end watch company sells handcrafted products, and the “class” of their product is evident right when you get to the site.

 

farer site design

Why it Works:

Farer clearly makes their high-quality products their UVP, as the bold images of nice watches dominate the home page. The entire site is clean and back up their UVP on each page of the site. You can even schedule an appointment right on the site, giving users a feeling that they are getting a personalized experience:

farer-site-design-schedule-page

 

Opportunities for Improvement:

While The SEM Post makes it clear that Google doesn’t discriminate against websites based on their font choice, the same article also says that, “font choice . . . certainly [impacts] user experience.”

UX is top-of-mind for online merchants, right next to SEO. Bad UX and UI results in a high bounce rate, shorter sessions, and fewer sales. Farer could do themselves a favor with a font that’s not as small and that’s easier to read.

4. Color Scheme

FatherRabbit.com

Industry: Gifts

Father Rabbit specializes in a lot of different niches, but tie it all together by merchandising their products as gifts. Everything from home decor to educational products are included in their catalog.

 

father-rabbit-site-design

Why it Works:

Their site is very well organized considering the range of products you’ll find here.

The design is minimalistic and it’s easy to find what you want. The font at the top is different, but not enough to be distracting.

Opportunities for Improvement:

There’s no clear visual hierarchy with Father Rabbit, and there’s not a lot of color, either. Smashing Magazine recommends using five colors to add accents and variety to your website, and Father Rabbit’s all-white motif could use a bit of contrast with a different color scheme.

5. Visualize Your Purpose

TheStatusAudio.com

Industry: Consumer electronics

Status Audio offers direct-to-consumer audio solutions, with three different headphone sets making up the entirety of their catalog. Status makes it clear that their goal is to deliver high quality products at lower-than-expected prices.

status site design

Why it Works:

Their entire philosophy of providing nothing else aside from what needs to be in a pair of headphones is backed by the minimal text and a single photo.

Opportunities for Improvement:

Again, there’s a lack of color to add contrast to the site. UX is impacted somewhat by that.

The rest of the site is similar to the home page. Product descriptions are a bit too short, and the About page need’s more useful content as well to explain the story behind the brand.

Making a great eCommerce site does require a lot of thought and consideration but it’s not as hard as you would think. Telling your story and doing it in a way that keeps things simple allows you to capture the attention of visitors and work to funnel them directly toward purchasing.

 

The examples above should help you examine your site, see where you can improve, and make your eCommerce store go from good to great. If you need suggestions on how to improve your site for increased traffic, check out our blog.

About Dakota Williams

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