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Kristopher CrockettAugust 20153 min read

How to Make Sure Your E-Commerce Website Design is Easy to Navigate

If you have lots of products to sell, whether these are all manufactured by your company or being resold by your business, having an online presence is important. This is because more and more people are doing their buying online rather than in physical outlets. Although people do still go to stores to buy stuff, not having an online portal running together with your physical one limits your chances of earning more.

Building your e-commerce site is relatively easy, especially with tools like WordPress and WooCommerce, which can be used even by those who do not have any coding background. What you may not be aware of however, is that building an e-commerce site and building one that people will buy from and patronize regularly, are two different things. You can have an e-commerce portal but not get any sales from it, and the reason is usually something as simple as your navigation.

In order for you to get the revenues that you want, you need to ensure that getting from your landing or home page, to the pages that sell your products, to the check-out page, is easy enough for people to do. If the design of your website, and your navigation bar, is rather complicated, you might find people leaving your site without buying anything. To help you come up with an e-commerce website design that people won’t get frustrated with, here are some things you can do:

Make sure you don’t have too many main navigation categories – too many items in your main nav can look cluttered on your site. To be able to narrow down the categories you put on your navigation bar, sort what you are selling into general categories, and then simply create drop down lists that will help your buyers to further filter down to what they are looking for.

Add a filtering option to your product lists – some sites have brand filters, while others have price filters, and still a few more have usage filters. Depending on what you are selling, you should consider adding relevant filters to your categories in order to help your customers find what they want faster. For example, if you are selling ceiling fans on your site, you can add brand filters so that a person can opt to look at products in their selected brand. You can also add a pricing filter, a filter for the number of blades, another one for with or without lighting options, and so on.

Have a working “search” feature – even with easy to navigate menus and filtering systems, some shoppers don’t have the patience to deal with such things. Having a search field on your e-commerce website, and search results that are accurate, will help you capture this particular market. They can simply type in what they are looking for, and are given a list of results that are compatible with what they need. Better yet, they are taken to the exact page they are looking for, if your site does have what they want to buy.

Ensure that your check-out process is secure but easy to follow – some people often leave a site even when they already have loads of items in their virtual shopping cart because of a complicated check-out system. If you are integrating lead generation into your check-out system, don’t go overboard by asking the shopper to fill out an entire page of information. In fact, try to avoid doing this and have an opt-in page instead for those shoppers who may want to get regular updates from your site. Try to keep your check-out page as simple as possible so that your buyer does end up buying from you, and not abandoning their cart right before paying for what is in it.

These are just a few of the things you can do to help keep people from leaving your online store in frustration. The less number of clicks it takes for them to get what they want, the better. They are shopping online for convenience after all, and if you make it more of a hassle than a convenience, it may make them avoid your site altogether in the future.


Kristopher Crockett

Kristopher M. Crockett, President & CEO of Selworthy, brings over a decade of innovative, solution-centric marketing expertise to the table. His profound understanding of marketplace trends and dynamic leadership propels Selworthy's mission to deliver bespoke digital solutions, enhancing client ROI and bridging the digital divide.