March 03, 2022
Minute Read

The Foundations Of An Effective E-Commerce Website

What makes a great e-commerce website? With the convenience and increasing trends in online shopping, an effective e-commerce website is now more important than ever.

Spacey Studios
The Design Team

With the majority of businesses being online these days, consumers have become more savvy and are increasingly interested in online shopping more than ever before. In fact, 9.1 million Australian households shopped online in FY 2021 according to Australia Post. As an agency specialising in the retail space, we know of some core essentials when it comes to the success of an e-commerce website.

Here’s a few of them:

Research & Setup

Any serious business will tell you that they didn’t just dive into launching their e-commerce. It takes a lot of research into industry trends, site UX/UI design, consumer behaviour, and of course, the development of a fast and reliable website before going live to your customers. Researching similar business’ sites, picking a hosting server or CMS platform and knowing your product price are all part of setting up a successful website that will easily sell your products and services.

If you’re just starting to dabble in the world of SEO, keywords and engaging website content, then it might be beneficial to hire an expert to help you. The amount of traffic and transactions you will make from a well configured, customer focused website will far outweigh the cost of having a web design agency set this up for you.

Attractive & Engaging

We all know sex sells right? Consider your e-commerce website design in this same way. No, we aren’t talking about hot models and fancy cars (unless this works for your brand, of course). Your products and services should be marketed in the most appealing way possible. High resolution, professional photos that aligns with your brand’s style and speaks to your target audience is going to have a significant impact on your online sales. The tangible equivalent of not doing these core elements is the same as trying to sell products that look cheap, poor quality or damaged packaging in store.

Not only do you want your products to look great but you also need your overall site to be attractive too. You could have the best branding, but if your site will not attract and engage with people, you won’t gain new customers.

An on-brand, cohesive site with great marketability will present greater opportunity to attract people to shop online at your store.


A site that is hard to navigate is one of the biggest downfalls of e-commerce and overall user experience (UX) / user interface (UI) design.

Think about if you were to walk into an IKEA store and there was no department signage, no store attendant and you got yourself lost in a maze of homeware and furniture. This is what it’s like to shop online with a site that has poor navigation.

When trying to avoid this, the main areas to think about are:

  • Are the menus clear?
  • Is there crucial information that might be hidden? (under other menus or in footers of the site)
  • Is it easy to search for products by name or code?
  • Are there filters that make it easier to shop for specifics?
  • Is it easy to checkout? (and are there too many steps/prompts before checking out?)
  • Are the payment options clear?
  • Is the shipping information clear?
  • Does my site adapt and perform properly when being viewed on other devices? E.g.: mobile phones, tablets, desktop, etc.)

According to the Future of Australian Retail report, 72% of consumers choose to shop online because they place a high value on convenience and a smooth online shopping experience. So, when faced with a lengthy payment process, 32% of customers will jump ship. 30% will leave due to security concerns and 27% become put off by unexpected charges.

Company Information

Online shopping can still be somewhat of a risky activity. Therefore, your customers want to know that they are buying from a real, reputable and trustworthy business.

You can put their mind at ease (and their shopping in the cart) by ensuring that your site has as much company information as possible. The story of your company, core business values and even mission statement can all put a customer’s mind at ease when thinking about making a purchase online.

Above all of this, the main area you need to focus on in this section is contact details. If a consumer can not contact your business for help, questions, refund info or general information, they are less likely to trust to buy from you.

By having an email address or listing your company headquarters, this instills a sense of confidence for buying from your brand online.


Reviews are so important in all aspects of your business but especially with e-commerce. Unlike being able to touch and feel products in store, the online space has a certain trust factor that comes with all purchases.

That’s why reviews from others can be so important to your site. They tell people not only the quality of the product or service but also how your business performed with the overall sale and delivery process. It ultimately provides social proof from others that have shopped from your e-commerce store.

Without these, your site appears less trustworthy and more of a risk to buy from.

Ready to start building your new e-commerce store? We would love to hear about where you will go from here! If you need any assistance in the design and development of an online store which sells, please contact the Spacey Studios team today and we would be more than happy to help you on this journey.

Then dive straight into the marketing of your new e-commerce store by learning the basics of social media marketing.