Designing An E-commerce Platform For Effective Online Shopping

Design Overview

The goal of this e-commerce designing project is to build up a useful web based business store where any item, (for example, books, CDs, cell phones, home appliances, electronic devices) can be purchased from anywhere using  the Internet.  The proposed site will contain the following modules Product Management System, Individual Account Management System, user order management System, Shopping cart; search Module, for the customer as well as for the administrators of the e-commerce site (Huang & Benyoucef, 2013).

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From the different researches done previously it is found by the authors like (), the y observed that different interface configuration can help in expanded sales of the products as a result of increased traffic. For instance, our site will have a FAQ (Frequently Asked Questions) segment for the products available on our site which will help in enhancing the amount of traffic to our site. In addition to that, the efficient product list on the site will prompt in increased sales, while having more links in between the different product categories ( such as links to the complimentary items purchased by the user)( Huang & Benyoucef, 2013). Moreover the home page of the site will include featured product promotions in order to have improved sales and visitor traffic.

While designing the page we are concerned about providing the visitor a good and efficient user experience as well as enough information about the site. In addition to that, the design of the site will make it clear within first few seconds (5-10sec) to the visitors about the products   that are available for sale on “EverySale”. The footer of the site will contain some digital SSL security certificates (Such as Verizon, Visa etc) which will make the visitors feel comfortable to share their credit card information in order to complete order placement by the user. Contextually the site will also consist of search bar on the home page so that a visitor visiting the site knowing what they require can find the product in less than 30 seconds and lesser amount of effort.  The design and the development of the site will be done in such a manner that if a visitor comes to the site to search products, the site will provide suggestions about the complementary products related to the searched product.  Different pages of “Every Sale” will contain relevant and unique content and interactive animation that will help in engaging the new visitors and to change them into loyal customers (Huang & Benyoucef, 2013).  The checkout form for the registered customers will be short and concise so that it makes easy for the users as recent researches had shown that single-page checkout forms are preferred by the users and outperformed the two-page checkout option of different sites by 21.8%. Even though, there are several benefits of having multi-form checkout options for the e commerce sites in the scenario where any user leaves their shopping cart, then the admin of the site will at least have their email address that can be used for later marketing of the products and convert the visitor into a loyal customer.

Project Scope

In addition to that, we will include a contact page and about page in order to attract the potential customers connect with the business organization. Some video and text on the different pages will be present to attract the new visitors to interact with the site. Other important items for this e-commerce include:

Descriptive photo of the products:  As people try to get details of the product as much as possible.

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A logo for the site:  This logo of the website is important for branding and recognition of the e-commerce site.

An efficient color scheme:  This is important for providing users better readability of the content on the pages of the site.

This design of the e commerce project is planned to be completed in three distinct stages, with each stage extra functionalities will be added to the project that makes it more usable and user friendly as well as helpful in acquiring new customers for the business.

In the first stage we will add futilities and interfaces that will enable the user to add a product to the shopping cart using the developed application.

 This includes the user’s ability to browse product categories when they arrive at the home page of the site EverySale.

After that the users will be able to select a product category and browse the items under that specific category.

Next as the website will be designed in such a way that the customer will view detailed description about a chosen product from the product list. After this the user will be able to add a product to their shopping cart.  In the next step the users can continue shopping or go to checkout option with the selected product.

  1. In the next stage of designing it is ensured that the users are able to use the application to look at the products in the shopping cart and to modify the selection.

Check out the things, continue shopping, and delete the things to refresh the shopping basket.

  1. The application requests client verification before logging in to the site and buy products. Add things to the cart.  Check out with the selected products Log in with a substantial username and password used at the time of registration (Huang& Benyoucef, 2013).
  2. The application must provide the order   confirm page before the checkout of the user. The user have to complete the required data on the confirm order page and at last place the order for the product.

 The site will be designed in accordance with the user requirements that will provide the following services,

Usability Documents  

Site content for Every Sale

The Every Sale will provide item’s pictures, corporate identity for the different product provider, with appropriate text styles, hues, and realistic compatible with all copywriting (Huang & Benyoucef, 2013).  The home page and product promotion pages will contain slideshow page to make them attractive and retain the user’s attention on the pages.

Users

1) On this module the business owners can post their products on the site for sale.

2) Visitors or customers can visit the site and category pages to buy the products as required. 

Usability Documents

Each sort of client will have an alternate flow of tasks as contingent upon their necessities all through the site.

Required functionality

  • The site will contains deferent functionalities, for example, shopping carts, shipping elements, tax incorporation, and secure online installment preparing.
  • Management of User accounts.
  • Sort items by categories.
  • Email affirmation receipts to clients after they confirm a product order.
  • A blogging stage on the webpage for staff to post new updates about the products and new launches.
  • Offer personalization for clients to customize also, shpping items. Clients will have the capacity to scale and position work of art on the gadget. Alternatives of shading on items base are additionally given.
  • Options for clients to subscribe for newsletters to get updates, or, on the other hand getting refreshes on their most loved new products.

Website improvement

  • SEO services and consultation will be offered as an additional administration for “Every Sale”.

Site maintenance

  • Short-term suppport for any specialized issues faced by the ecommerce site “EverySale”

Business requirements 

Offering maximum convenience to the customers: The business organizations targets to provide maximum convenience to their users or its customers.   Therefore one of the main business requirements for finally designed and developed application is providing easy and convenient shopping experience to the customers or the users of this e commerce platform.  Through this site customers will visit the pages of the site that will provide them products from multiple vendors at any time any day to check out products, compare the pries from different vendors. After this they can make purchases with the selected product, without wandering around from one to another physical shops (Sharma & Crossler, 2014). Contextually it can be said that in few scenarios the users can immediately get the product or service from “Everysale” (in this the products may be software, EBooks etc.)

Providing online platform for the sellers: For the seller of the products, web based business platform or the offers an approach to cut operational expenses and grow their business sectors. The do not have to assemble, staff, or keep up a physical store or print and circulate marketing mails and maintain product inventories for the business (Fang et al., 2014). The automated product request tracking and billing system of “EverySale” will help in reducing the extra operational costs. In addition to that if the service or the products are downloadable from the store then online business organization “EverySale” do not have to pay for the delivery charges reducing the cost for the business. Since the items can be sold offer over the Internet, sellers will be able to advertise their items comprehensively and thus are not restricted by the physical region or barriers of the physical store.

In addition to that some other important business requirements are listed below,

Beautified Content:  For an e-commerce organization it is important to have descriptive and beautiful content for the products that will attract the user’s attention.  Therefore it is important to use appropriate keywords to describe the product or service and utilization in the contents of that product. This key words will be also important to make sure that the website is SEO friendly as the web crawlers look for the webpages that contains some specific keywords that matches with any users search string (Sharma & Crossler, 2014).  Therefore it is important to have precise content about the products that is informative and can be easily understood by anyone (even for the non-technical individual when they are trying to buy some computer peripheral).

Business and User Requirements

Maximum functionality and Minimal designing: For any users on an e-commerce site the most important factor for their interaction with the website is the ease of navigation on every page of the site (Huang & Benyoucef, 2013). Therefore it is determined that the designs and stylesheets will be used at minimal level and on the contrary highlighting all the features of the site.  Therefore it is determined that for the visitors they will be able to see  the  ‘help’ ,‘buy now’, ‘support’ featured on each page of “Everysale”.

Personalize promotions for the users: This feature of the “Everysale” will be helpful to have the ability to provide user specific product or service promotions on the homepage of the site (Fang et al., 2014).  This design feature is also helpful in providing or generating promotions based on purchase behavior of a certain user. This process may consider the value of different previous purchses and transaction amount or the purchase history.

User Requirements 

Enhanced product display with descriptions:   The Images of the products and related videos of the products must be available on the pages (Li, Wu & Lai, 2013). This specification will help the targeted customer segment to get a better idea about the products that are available for sale on “EverySale”.

Use of the SSL for transactions:   The customers always checks for secured environment for the transaction of the financial data. This is considered as a security feature of the website that protects the classified data like Mastercard information of the customer (Sharma & Crossler, 2014).  Therefore ensuring that this e-commerce site uses legitimate SSL certification will encourage the users or the customers to share personal and financial data.

For developing and designing the e commerce site “EverySale” following are the assumptions made by the developers and designers.

Guest check out option: As most of the e commerce sites asks the visitors to register and create an account on the site to check out with the product. In case of the “EverySale”, it is assumed that, the site will provide guest check out option. This feature will help any visitor to book or order a product without registering to the site and be anonymous in order to avoid the marketing mails sent from the e-commerce site.

Customers know about the product: In the present scenario, it is assumed that the customers know about the product or service they required. Therefore it is determined that the website will provide search functionality on every page of the site and is easy to use by the customers (Fang et al., 2014). In addition to that it is also proposed that the design will utilize the autocomplete feature that will help the new or the experienced users to find out the products or items they need or the products that are related to searched product.

Lightweight design of the pages:  While making the pages of the website “EverySale” more attractive and feature rich it must be kept in mind that the more number of CSS and javascripts are used the slow the pages will be loaded on the browsers of different devices. Thus it is assumed that, the CSS or JavaScript resource files will be combined in a single file that will help in improving the load time of the website (Huang & Benyoucef, 2013). In addition to that, the site will use the caching methodology in order to reduce the required time spent transferring data among the database server and web server.

Precondition: The shopping cart must contain at least one product in order to show the checkout button on the webpage.

Basic Flow: Browse Everysale.ccom-> Add selected products to the cart->go to view-cart webpage-> select checkout option->go forward the order-form page

The design of an e-commerce site includes some key phases which ensures the successful completion of the process as well as the success of the business through achieving the desired business goals through the website. The steps in designing the website “EverySale” are discussed below.

Consultation with the difference stakeholders:    Through the consultation process with the different stakeholders it can be made sure that what are business goal that is desired to achieve through the e-commerce site (Huang & Benyoucef, 2013).  The short term and long term goals set for the some certain period of time. In addition that the way new ecommerce website fit into that vision will be also discussed in this consultation process.

Requirement assessment:   In this step the developers and the stakeholders to find out the précised list of different requirements. This incorporates deciding the intended customer segment, business goals set for the website, features for different pages, and other relevant information that needs to be integrated while developing the site (Fang et al., 2014). Example of such feature can be stated as linking and displaying the related products for a searched products.  This linked products should be displayed with a prominent space in the pages and not in thumbnails else it would not attract the customers.

Detailed planning:  In this phase the business model as well as the categories of the products and services will be determined. In addition to that the way they might be categorized on the webpages is also determined.

Integrating the social media on the pages: As the social media has grown as the largest platform to market for any business that sells products and services. Thus, while designing the pages social media sharing functions will be also made a prominent part of the product pages. This feature will make it very easy to share the purchase made by the customers (Li, Wu & Lai, 2013). This can helps in getting valuable but free advertising on the largest platform.  It has to be made sure that share buttons are presents on the product pages along with the complete purchase page.

Easy navigation:  In case of the “EverySale” e-commerce site, instead of having general two main ways of navigation techniques we added filtering navigation technique too. Usually the e-commerce sites includes navigation styles which are menus and search.  The menus usually includes drop downs that contains sub-menu (Huang & Benyoucef, 2013). The size or content of menu and submenu depends on the size of the website and the amount of products available on the e-commerce platform. This ecommerce site will have more granular search and filtering options.

Designing descriptive product page:  The product pages of this website will be created in order to provide experience same to shopping in real life. The product pages will have plenty of descriptive information about every product products (Fang et al., 2014). Descriptions along with the relevant photos and specifications will provide as much as possible on the pages.  

Real time customer support using the online chat option: In order to handle customer issues related to the products and order the website need to have good customer support team who will easily and promptly resolve  the customer issues in real-time basis.  In addition to that it is also mandatory that the customer service will be available round-the-clock basis so that customer can get a resolution as soon as they face an issue with the product or service.

Ease of navigation: The most important factor that is required for the success of the proposed e-commerce “EverySale” is the ease of navigation for the users. As the customers do not have too much technical knowledge thus the easy navigational control will help the users to easily find out or search for the required product on this site.

Use of user review forms:   Different forms on the website should be optimized so that the customers can provide valuable feedback about the products and services they ordered or purchased from the website of “Everysale”.  It needs to be made sure that, every feedback about the products visible to other visitors (Sharma & Crossler, 2014). It will have influential effect encourage the new visitors to make their purchase depending on the reviews of the products and services.    

Aims of the evaluation of the site 

Following are the some of the aims for the evaluation of this site

Ease of navigation of the interfaces:  The website is developed in such a way that even a non-technical visitor/user can easily use the functionalities and navigate between the pages of this site.

Performance: This evaluation will determine that if the developed application achieves the desired level of performance when this site is used by the real users commercially.

Errors:  In this evaluation the possible errors and how the site will recover from any failure.

Customer Satisfaction: Determining the user satisfaction level while using this website.

Evaluation Methodology

Following is the used methodology to evaluate the design and performance of the “EverySale” e-commerce site.

Continuous Use: The website is evaluated based on continuous use of the site and the different technical and performance related errors.

Questionnaire:  In addition to this a survey with different user interface related questionnaire is also done. The list of questionnaire is given below.

4. Strongly agree

3. Tend to Agree

2. Tend to Disagree

1. Disagree

0. NEUTRL

2

Is the time satisfactory for browsing and placing an order on the site?

3

 Is the navigation between the pages are easy?

4

Adding products to the cart and check out process is easy to use?

5

Are all the pages of this site are user friendly?  

Test audience and ethical consideration

For this survey and evaluation process we selected few technical experts and some non-technical users while asking them to find out the different flaws in the design.    

The users responses against the given questionnaire will be evaluated using the excel sheets and comparison between the responses will be done.  

References 

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