5 Tips for a Great eCommerce Website Design

Great eCommerce Website Design

What good is an ecommerce website if it can’t lead to more customers and sales? What you may not realize is that the design of your ecommerce website can make or break your sale. In ecommerce, customers DO judge books by their cover and if your website doesn’t look trustworthy and professional, they will go somewhere else.

The quality of the design for your website speaks a lot about your online business. First impressions are always important. The design of your ecommerce website must exude a sense of comfort and trust.

So how do you know what makes a great ecommerce website design? Where do you get ideas and web design inspiration? Well, here are some design tips to give your ecommerce website design a better chance of success.


1. Choose the right colors

Color is an emotional, powerful and very critical part of any design. Selecting proper colors for a new site may appear difficult at first, but if you follow the basic color theory principles when choosing your palette, it becomes really simple.

The majority of successful ecommerce websites utilize a white background, dark colored backgrounds tend to radiate an uneasy feeling. Use bright accent colors to attract customers to specific calls to action, like Buy Now. However, don’t go overboard with color, try to use one primary color and up to 2 secondary/accent colors.

2. Use professional photography

If your products don’t look good, then people will buy somewhere where the photos do look good. The photos subliminally speak to the quality of the products that they will receive.

Spend the extra money and hire a professional photographer. If you can’t afford that, then purchase a Light Cube and take the photos yourself. A Light Cube will give your products a nice limbo white backdrop which can give your products a professional feel.

3. Design “in-store” promotional banners

From your homepage to every major catalog page, it pays off to display self-promotional banner graphics promoting products either deeper in the site or even on the same page. Rather than leading customers through pages and pages of thumbnailed product images, the banners will increase the visual interest of the page while adding to the perceived value of the website.

You can use glamour shots of your products or photos of people happily using the products. Use stylish design fonts to get your message across.

4. Keep it clean

Don’t junk up your site with a bunch on useless gadgets and gizmos. Let the focus stay on your products and calls to action. You want them to wind down your sales funnel, not get distract by an irreverent videos or animated widgets.

A general rule of thumb is, if it doesn’t help you sell more products, then take it off.

5. A look of trust

Aside from price, trust is the key factor behind a buying decision. Even if your prices are even slightly higher than a competitor, you could still get the sale just because your website looks better and more trustworthy.

Be sure to include “trust” logos into your design, like SSL logos, any security validations, the credit card you accept and shippers you use. Showing logos of recognizable affiliations will add to your trust value in the eyes of potential customers.

Get some design inspiration

So where can you find examples of great ecommerce design and current trends? Well Cart Craze of course. Sorry for the shameless plug, but that’s why we built it. It’s a research tool for getting ecommerce design inspiration. You can search through 1000’s of ecommerce sites in numerous niches.

You can also check out template websites, like ThemeForest. You can search for ecommerce themes with the highest sales or the best feedback. You’ll quickly begin to see the common components of successful ecommerce website design. 

Written by Bob Kruse

Bob Kruse's picture
I am the Executive Producer at 2440 Media, a web design and development firm in Pittsburgh, PA. I've been building websites for over 20 years. I don't feel that old though.Follow me on: