Is Your Ecommerce Site Missing the Point?

Your customers have money and they want to spend it on things that are going to make them happy. Let’s assumes that the majority of ecommerce sales are not for basic needs. We can’t shop for real and true companionship at Amazon. We can’t buy local shelter at Walmart. We can’t purchase safety on Overstock. So, when we have those basics covered, we are excited to shop for the things that temporarily add happiness to our lives. Money can’t buy happiness, but buying can spike my dopamine levels. Money can buy things that make me temporarily happy. Money can buy tools that aid me in a lifestyle of happiness.

Provide the products customers are hoping will make them happy.

In order to do this you need to know your customer. How do you know your customer? Are you guessing at what they want? Have you asked them what they want? Asking doesn’t just happen through surveys or interviews. Asking comes when you give them options and they make choices. Watch your customers and get to know them. Design for the choices that teach you about your customers.

Help them find those products.

Navigation isn’t the only way to help your customer find the products they want. Some ecommerce sites, each page feels like they telling the customer the entire menu and specials every time they choose a new page.

What if your site were to behave more like wonderful restaurant wait staff? "Good evening ma’am, have you tried our Duck Mole Tacos? Oh, you don’t prefer duck but Mole sounds good? You would absolutely love our Pork Mole Pablano or any of these other 10 pork dishes."

If you’re working through email, the customer has already made decisions and answered questions about their preferences in what they have browsed and not browsed. The ecommerce experience across web and emails should feel like a thoughtful conversation.

Help them buy those products.

This week I was on one of my favorite t-shirt sites and I couldn’t figure out how to purchase a shirt. I had to select the size before the price was evident. Oops! Not a huge deal I guess, but if that happens 100 times a day that adds up. What if it’s 1000 times a day? That’s money left on the table y’all. Review your user experience to see where even small things could be improved. Don’t let yourself be the judge of that. Watch your customers and would-be customers succeed and fail at that.

Pick something and improve, even if just for a day. Make it your mission and watch things grow.
Matthew Smith Aug 3, 2017