Any business that’s serious about growth understands the importance of implementing an e-commerce solution. Not only does integrating an e-commerce solution increase a brand’s market share, it also provides a new revenue stream to offer services and products. An e-commerce site enables your business to reach the customer wherever and whenever they are ready to buy.

But implementing an e-commerce site requires important considerations. This is especially true if you want to build an e-commerce platform that contributes to a great online experience and seamless transactional process. After all, a great online shopping experience is how your business can distinguish itself from its competitors.

This article examines how to move your business forward with a customer-centric e-commerce site.


Website speed

Website and transactional speed are one of the main reasons consumers are trading in brick and mortar stores for e-commerce websites. No consumer enjoys waiting in line, so your e-commerce site should replicate desired behavior. A website that takes too long to load hinders the customer experience, impacting purchasing behavior which usually results in cart abandonment.

It’s important to put your best foot forward when building your e-commerce site. Opt to include an ERP solution for your e-commerce platform to get your site running faster. ERP systems empower your business to build quality responsive websites that make it easy for customers to do repeat business with you.

Ease of use

Research done by SUMO Heavy found that consumers rated “usability and functionality” as the more important aspect of a customer-centric e-commerce site. Indeed, a website that caters to a consumer’s individual needs makes it easy to deliver a great online brand experience. One that strengthens the brand and consumer relationship, increases conversion rates and enhances brand loyalty.

To build an e-commerce site that is functionality and usability optimized, focus on these five fundamental guidelines.

  • Keep navigation simple and functional.
  • Ensure site navigation is consistent.
  • Utilize a responsive design.
  • Use a linear checkout process.
  • Optimize internal site search.

Along these guidelines, your website must continuously be performing A/B tests to ensure it remains optimized for usability and functionality.

Create a globally equipped e-commerce site

E-commerce doesn’t just enable ease of use and accessibility for your target audience. It also paves the way for your brand to engage with new markets and demographics. It provides a wider audience reach, enabling your business to sell its products and services nationally and worldwide. This potential growth in audience reach means your e-commerce site must be adaptive to create a localized web store experience.

A fully optimized e-commerce site facilitates a localized online experience through product descriptions and content adapted to the appropriate local language. It also means listed currency offer local payment options, and the shipping methods are adjusted accordingly.

Done right, a localized web store can effectively target unique local customers through marketing initiatives, increasing revenue and consumer growth.

Personalize content

To create a truly customer-centric site, it’s important to understand the significance of personalized content. Today’s consumer is flooded by constant streams of content. By creating highly personalized, highly engaging content, you cut through the online chatter, driving interest and gaining their business.

Build communication streams according to their specific preferences, potential consumers will feel like they are treated as individuals, rather than as sales targets. By anticipating their needs and creating timely content that resonates with their buying habits, your business is able to strengthen and build engagement. This will result in increasing the chances of influencing their buying decisions and acquiring potential sales.

Inspire and engage

In e-commerce as in business, first impressions matter.

When it comes to developing an e-commerce site, visual design is a critical element in capturing user interest. A study done by Google found that consumers decide on whether they stay or leave a website in less than 50 milliseconds. From structure and color schemes to spacing and symmetry, first impressions matter.

When designing your website, ensure its visual cues follow convention; simple, familiar, with key elements that draw interest. A website that’s visually inspiring and engaging will influence user impression more than content will. By increasing your site’s visual appeal, you create greater satisfaction from the user experience, ensuring they stick around longer.

In today’s marketplace, e-commerce is no longer optional. It’s a must. But the desire to build an e-commerce site is the starting point. An e-commerce site that delivers on the customer experience is more likely to increase its competitive advantage.

Customer-centric means real-time and relevant

Customers today expect frictionless service — what Google describes as “fast, relevant and seamless experiences.” For businesses to meet and anticipate such customer demands, access to real-time data is non-negotiable. Having real-time visibility will allow you to provide timely assistance to visitors exploring your e-commerce site. Most importantly, any inefficiencies that slow down your processes need to be eliminated. Investing in automation, cloud ERP, data intelligence and other solutions that equip you to be smarter and more agile is not just nice to have, but necessary.

Your e-commerce site can influence the impact your business has on its market share and customer base. Therefore, it’s important your business caters to user demands, comprising a user experience that’s truly customer-focused.

About the Author: Stephen Canning is the CEO of JCurve Solutions. By being passionate about how businesses can leverage technology to realize their competitive advantage, Stephen has had great success in driving business growth through clever technology as well as building successful, high performing teams by focusing on culture.