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E-commerce is the business of the 21st century. Not all e-commerce websites are successful. Just because you have a product no matter how well priced, it is or how much better it is than similar products does not mean your e-commerce website will be successful. These 5 simple rules will help you to be more successful.

1. Design Your Website Like You Would Design Your Traditional Retail Store

When you build a traditional store, you have displays, your store is merchandised, and the arranged in a manner that entices shoppers. When you build an e-commerce site, you have to consider the layout of your store in a different way. You need to make your site easy to navigate. You need to make sure that the checkout is easy to use, and you need to grab your visitor’s attention in 3 seconds or less, or they’ll be hitting the back button and off somewhere else.

2. Your Website Needs to be Completely Functional

When you have a traditional business, you make sure the lights all work, that the isles are clear, and that your customer is comfortable. When you build a website, you can’t have dead links, unorganized products, under construction signs, or anything else that will cause your visitor to go elsewhere to shop.

3. Have the Stock You Sell in Your Website

When you open a traditional retail store, you order all your stock and put it on the shelves. The consumer comes in, picks up what they want, pays, and goes home. Many who setup an e-commerce website use drop shippers, and while many are successful this way, you need to ensure you have the products available that you are selling. If you are out of stock then make sure you pull the item or mark it as such. You need to be able to keep your commitments to your customer. In fact, not having the product available is the number one reason for failure.

4. Build Credibility With Information

Successful e-commerce websites build credibility by offering their customers their real names, contact information, and by adding a photo, it personalizes you. Customers are far more likely to purchase when this information is openly displayed, and the photo makes the customer feel like they know who you are.

5. Secure Checkout

Traditional retail stores go to great lengths to make you feel safe and secure in the store. Your visitors need to feel safe and secure in your e-commerce store. People want to know their credit card information is safe and this is done by using a secure checkout.

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These 5 simple rules are a good place to start when building an e-commerce website with success in mind.

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