shopping-online-businessBusinesses are moving towards an online market faster and faster with each passing year. In 2011 alone, as according to the US Census, retail sales for the online market had grown to over $190 billion, beating the offline yearly revenue by a large margin. This has only continued to grow in the succeeding years. However, a business cannot simply put up a website and expect their site to print out cash; there are specific factors to consider if you want your online business to be successful. Just look into the following:

Having the Right Shopping Tools

For an online business to succeed, you will first need to consider all of the tools visitors require and demand for their needs. Get the essentials out of the way immediately: an easy-to-use shopping cart, advanced search options, categories for all of your retail items, a one-to-two page registration form so they can easily log back in and retain their specific settings, and the feature to save specific items on a wish list or something similar. The more options your customers will have then the more accessible and reliable your online business will become for them, making it the optimal choice over the competition. This is why a lot of eCommerce advisors are now turning to tools like Shopify since they cater to a lot of online shopping needs. Remember: you want your customers to enjoy shopping at your website – this includes your own marketing strategy and price range – so that they keep coming back instead of sniffing for a different place to go.

Adjusting to the Average Time on a Web Page

Believe it or not, the way your website looks will play a large part in how the business will run. Everything, from themes to how well organized columns are, will determine if people will stick around to shop. eCommerce specialists generally give the rule that the average consumer will stick to one web page for twenty seconds. A study by Chartbeat shows that most websites only have up to fifteen seconds before they lose the attention of their visitors. Another study by the Weidert Group indicates that this average can change according to the general nature of a web page’s content but the average remains within the ‘less than a minute’ range. With this in mind, a business website needs to garner the attention of its visitors quickly and then direct them to wherever they need to go before they lose interest.

Navigational Tools

Aesthetics play a large part – it immediately sets the mood and determines what visitors should expect when they continue to peruse through your site – but it should be functional as well. This means you need to have all the navigational tools right at the get-go and they shouldn’t be hard to find. Having the right theme for your website can easily fix this problem; the key is to make sure everything is easy to find. Pictures and text need to be displayed in an organized manner, the menu shouldn’t be a pain to navigate through, and there should be quick-push buttons that give options to by-pass having to go through several pages all over again. If a visitor needs to click four buttons just to get to one page then you might already lose sixty percent of them. This leads to the last factor: a proper theme.

Set the Tone with a Good Theme

Every website should follow a specific design and having a good website theme will do the job. The theme will determine how many columns you have and how they are organized, what kind of media content coding you can support (from CSS3 to HTML5 and others), and what kind of side bar tools or optional features you can give to your visitors. It can be very expensive and resource-heavy to create a website from scratch; you will also need to do some work on getting your new website up on the search engine lists. By picking a ready-made theme you can get a good chunk of the job done for you. A good feature of choosing themes is that they can have their own marketing tools to help boost your website, track visit analysis, and determine the average success of your business. Choosing a theme that works well can get you right where you want to be in mere weeks instead of months.

An online business can rise and fall immediately depending on the factors listed above. Despite the numbers shown by numerous studies indicating that online retail is the way to go, the competition is also on a rise. You can expect just about every sort of business going online and only by adjusting your website’s designs and content to a specific niche and visitor needs can you ensure your business will garner enough attention and sales. Start with a theme, go over your design, and find the right retail software.