We often are told as children not to judge a book by its cover. But as consumers, that’s exactly what we do every day. While we are wary to eat at the dingy burger place in a bad neighborhood, we’re easily attracted to well-lit Apple stores at the mall.

While online retail stores admittedly do not need to worry about locations or foot traffic, they still need to prioritize their outward appearance. Yes, looks matter when you are trying to sell goods online or in person.

Below, we will cover a few tips for making your e-commerce site appear reliable and friendly.

Avoid Cluttered Webpages

Ever heard the saying, “A cluttered desk is a sign of a cluttered mind?”

Disorganization is a huge turn off for consumers. That’s why you rarely see brick-and-mortar retailers selling wrinkled T-shirts out of cardboard boxes. Instead, there is usually a mannequin wearing an attractive outfit next to a rack of crisp clean clothes.

The same thing can be said for successful e-commerce stores. Use high-quality images of your products when constructing your e-commerce website. Let these images breathe by leaving a lot of white space on your website. This ensures the user’s attention will focus on what you want to show them.

Put Customer Reviews in a Prominent Position

Prospective buyers are smart. They understand when they read a product description on your site; they’re reading the biased opinion of someone trying to sell them something. This isn’t necessarily a turn-off, per se, but it is something you want to anticipate and address.

Shoppers are more likely to become buyers when they believe an unbiased party has recommended the product. While it’s true buyers can peruse the world wide web for reviews, you want to keep Internet users on your site. So, why not provide the information shoppers want right on your website?

Try sharing customer reviews on each of your product pages. This will provide shoppers with the information they need to make final decisions. Plus, it will demonstrate you aren’t afraid of what people have to say.

 Looks Matter: Making Your E-commerce Site Appear Reliable

Ensure Your Website Is Mobile-Friendly

Does your e-commerce website look good on mobile? It should. Mobile e-commerce currently makes up 63 percent of the total market share and is on the rise. More pressing still is the idea many consumers start their shopping via mobile and close their orders on a desktop or laptop computer.

If your e-commerce store is unreachable via mobile (or just looks like hot garbage), you are likely to lose out on desktop sales too. Consider leveraging a mobile-friendly e-commerce website builder like Shopify to ensure that your mobile customer doesn’t feel left out.

Use Trust Badges to Your Advantage

Trust badges (also known as “trust seals”) are little icons on your website that vouge for your site reputation. For instance, a Norton trust badge indicates that your website is up to date with certain security standards. Thus, shopper might be more inclined to share their credit card information with your site, because they know their information will be encrypted and kept away from prying eyes. The same thing goes for PayPal Verified, McAfee, Verisign and others.

According to Forbes, roughly 75 percent of customers have not completed a sale because they didn’t recognize or find trust seals on a website. Don’t let this happen to you. Apply for trust badges to put your customers at ease.

Provide a Clear Path to Checkout

Last, but not least, give shoppers a clear path to checkout. Prospective buyers are more likely to complete their transactions if the checkout page is user-friendly. Conversely, they are more likely to jump ship if the checkout page is full of pop-up ads, multiple logins, redirects and the like. Why? Because these are common traps used by hackers and cybercriminals. Plus, they’re just plain annoying when you’re trying to pay for an item and get on with your day. Furthermore, ask only for necessary information and limit the checkout process to one page.

Similarly, you will want to offer a variety of shipping and payment options. For instance, some customers might feel uncomfortable sharing their debit card number online but are A-OK with sharing PayPal information. You should anticipate and allow for this. The same thing goes for DHL e-commerce and shipping options. What is DHL e-commerce? Shopify says it is the fulfillment and delivery of physical goods in exchange for digitally transfer data and funds. By providing customers with options on how they want their items shipped (and how quickly), you can assuage any anxiety that comes with the checkout process.

Follow the above tips and you’ll be sure to delight e-commerce customers. After all, you’ll have done everything in your power to make your site look friendly and reliable!

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