There are lots of problems you have to handle, when you decide to go online and promote your retail business on the web. However, to become successful and lucrative, your business should be presented by a high quality and functional website, which will become a part of its online image, reflecting and highlighting the high standards you have set for your retail company.
It goes without saying that your website should also be properly targeted to attract the attention of your audience, encouraging them to buy from you and making your company stand out from the crowd. Actually, you will avail much more benefits, if you manage to develop a decent retail website.
By investing into this endeavor, you will eventually gain more profit by increasing the amount of sales and driving new customers. Let’s have a look at the must-have elements of a decent retail website now:
- Product Catalogue. It’s impossible to imagine a retail website without a product catalogue that is easy-to-browse. It should present the products you sell in the most favorable light, focusing the attention of users on their benefits. Each product should come with high quality photos (or even video reviews) and a detailed description to let the customers know what they are going to buy.
- Search Box. When managing your retail website, you keep uploading new products and delete those that are not on your sales list anymore. Consequently, it’s not easy for a customer to find the product he/she needs. This is especially true if the product assortment of your retail store is impressive. By adding a search filter to your website, you contribute to the ease of search and comfortable browsing experience. By the way, it would be smart to make it possible for your clients to select the products by certain criteria, which should depend upon the specialization and type of your business.
- News Section. Your new and returning customers will appreciate the availability of the News Section at your retail website. This is the place, where they will be able to find out the recent news, hot deals, discount offers, new products info etc.
- Wish List and Customer Review Section. The availability of the customer review section allows users to look through the comments of other clients, who have already purchased anything from you and wish to share their shopping experience. It’s also a smart idea to add a wish list here, where you customers will be able to notify you about the products they would like to buy from you. This is a pretty nice way to grow your customer base.
- Payment System Buttons. If you have a serious retail business, then you have to offer your customers several payment options to choose from. Make sure there are the payment system icons at your retail website.
- Live Chat or Customer Support Option. Your clients may face problems during the shopping process. The quicker you are able to solve these problems, the higher the customer satisfaction rate will be. By offering your clients a live chat or a customer support option, you make sure their problems will be solved on time.
- Contact Info. This point does not require any explanations. It’s essential to provide your customers with the contact info of your company. This should include the physical address of your office, the telephone number, email, Skype, social network accounts and what not. The more – the better.
To achieve your business goals and generate prospects, you need to choose the most suitable way to get a full-featured and functional website that will meet your business needs and the requirements of your target audience. The choice of the available options is quite extensive nowadays, but the major solutions go down to three variants. You can either create a website yourself (this option implies the awareness of the web design skills, of course), hire a professional web studio or a freelancer to do that for you or use a website builder to cope with the task on your own even if you are a non-techie.
When deciding on the most suitable option, you have to make sure your retail website looks professionally, is functional, rich in content and ensures safe online shopping experience. This is where the use of a credible website builder is the best choice.
These out-of-the-box platforms are easy-to-use and understand and they don’t require any coding skills or knowledge to build a decent website. Instead, they possess the set of features and options needed to reach your web design objectives.
To choose the right eCommerce backend system for your online store, you should first ask yourself some questions:
- Does my business require a custom design or should I go with a ready template?
- How many products do I have to sell?
- What functionality does my website require?
- Who is going to manage my website after it has been published?
These are only a few questions, but they should help you define the scope of your project. To make choosing the right platform a little more bearable, we decided to write a quick overview of the most expedient website builders for retail.
Wix – the Best Website Builder for Retail
Wix website builder is the best solution among similar platforms. You can create a retail website even using a free plan. It’s a perfect way to test how your store will interact with target audience. The cost of complete retail website is several times less than in specified for eCommerce Shopify. Besides, if you catch the Wix sale price, you can build a full-charged retail website for near $16.50/mo – it’s almost free.
eCommerce features: with numerous Wix Templates you can create a retail website with an attractive design. Wix has also lots of helpful apps within Wix App Market, that serve to make the process of shopping as much easier for your customers.
Advantages: over 500 different website templates, intuitive interface
Cost: as it was mentioned above, Wix has a free plan that never expires. The paid packages starting from $4.50/mo. You can upgrade you tariff version at any time you want.
Shopify – the Most Featured for Retail Website Builder
Shopify is rightfully considered to be the most featured solution for retail in eCommerce. This platform has all options and selling instruments you need to create a competitive webstore. Besides, Shopify has its own hardware (like POS terminal etc) aimed to facilitate sellers work.
eCommerce features: the builder itself offers a powerful eCommerce system, and you can also add more functionality by adding Shopify applications. They have a library of apps similar to Wix’s App Market. Here are some apps: Shopify ‘Buy‘ button, recover abandoned carts; sell on Facebook; featured products etc.
Advantages: it’s easy-to-use and has lots of useful options.
Cost: The simplest pricing package (including only adding a ‘Buy’ button to your existing website) costs $9/mo. The full-optioned plan that allows you to build a complete website with Shopify starts from $29/mo.
uKit – The Easiest Website Builder for Retail
uKit is one of the most rapidly developing website builders, which offers a variety of eCommerce options and features that suit the needs of any retail business. It has the required set of tools to enable you to build a full-featured webstore with no serious effort and waste of time. Providing a range of functions, reliable customer support services and ease-of-use, uKit proves to be a great value for you money.
eCommerce features: uKit has an integrated eCommerce widget you can use to develop a retail store. The service also partners with Ecwid – a powerful platform that makes it possible for a user to launch an Ecwid account and integrate it into the retail website. Ecwid lets business owners sell their products across the globe by making use of the multi-currency support. It is available in more than 45 languages and offers over 40 payment options.
Advantages: Availability of more than 360 free responsive templates that are sorted out by industry, reliable customer support, an easy-to-use toolbar with a variety of widgets and web design elements.
Cost: uKit is moderately priced and offers 3 plans to be chosen with regard to your business needs and goals. The cheapest plan costs $4/month, but if you expect to get the revenue from your retail website, it makes sense to upgrade to Premium+ or Pro plans that cost $8/mo and $12/mo correspondingly. The system also allows ordering a custom made website developed by the professional uKit team for $50 only. This is an attractive offer for any business, including the retail one.
Building a quality retail website doesn’t have to be a dreadful or challenging experience. Instead, it’s easy to cope with the task by using a reliable website builder that will help design a full-featured and appealing retail website that will drive the attention of the target audience, thus growing the customer base and increasing the amount of sales.
If you are looking for a specialized eCommerce website builder, then Shopify is what you should go for. It is affordable, functional and niche-oriented. uKit is a great eCommerce building tool as well. With a variety of widgets, Ecwid software integration options and several pricing plans, it can come up to your business needs and expectations. For all those users looking for the universal solution, we recommend using Wix. Offering a rich selection of responsive templates, Wix App Market solutions and moderately-priced plans, this website builder is rightfully considered the best in the niche.