Here is a quick list of 4 of the more important things your e-commerce website should have.
1. Digital Certificate
A digital certificate guarantees the identity of your website. This helps shoppers confidence and increases the sales on your site. A certificate changes the address of your site from http://www.yoursite.com to https://www.yoursite.com. It also encrypts and protects any data traveling from the website to users browsing the website. Check the image above which shows how you can identify if a website is secure. If it’s using SSL (security) then you will see https instead of http.
Can I run an e-commerce store without a digital certificate?
It’s possible not to have a digital certificate. If you are using a third-party payment gateway such as DPS Payment Express or Eway then those organisations are responsible for securing credit card information, but the sales on your website will generally still be lower than if you had a certificate. People are used to seeing the certificate and a large portion of the population now know to look for the secure (https) as opposed to the insecure (http) website address. They no nothing of third-party security so its better safe than sorry with this one.
2. Free Shipping
This one is almost a deal breaker. You can almost guarantee one or another of your competitors will be offering free shipping at any given point, so it pays to offer free shipping and not miss out on the sale. You need to try and maintain margin also, so in the worst case scenario offer free shipping when you spend over $XX. When you are competing for sales online there’s a good chance you will be competing against local companies who are selling the same products and in this instance, the customer doesn’t have to pay the freight. In the ideal world you would want to set up drop-shipping with your suppliers so that the products can go straight from the factory or wholesale storage to customer. Once you reach a certain level of sales it might be worth investigating a warehousing and shipping service like Fulfillment by Amazon (FBA). The gist of FBA is they handle all our stock and delivery from there warehouses all over the world. If you want to check out what is coming in the future of shipping, then check our drone delivery by Amazon Prime Air.
Make sure your shoppers can shop by brand. Lots of e-commerce systems now have this as a feature or a plugin. Chances are if you selling anything products that have an established brand, then it will be advantageous to have an optimised page in your shop for that brand. See below as an example. The JS Surfboards is a brand optimised page on the Vertigo Surf website. It usually ranks 2nd or 3rd behind the suppliers website because the page has been optimised for ‘JS Sufboards’ as a keyword, along with a few other secondary keywords.
4. Trust Symbols
Payment options/symbols should be clearly visible to the user. See these symbols has the same effect on people as seeing an old friend you know you can trust.