Improve the shopping experience on your eCommerce store with the best UX practices.

Get useful pointers on e-commerce user experience, tablet interfaces, mobile UX, responsive design, holiday banners, email design and more.

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  • Use pop-ups to directly notify your visitors of your current promotion. When you offer discounts on excess inventory, use pop-up on your homepage to effectively notify the potential buyers of your current clearance sale. You can also use pop-ups to show personalized offers to visitors based on their demographics, interests, location, behavior, traffic source etc or even combinations of these and create a unique experience for your visitors.

    eCommerce homepage promotional pop-up

  • There are some cases where you need to get user input to continue shopping. For example, if you run an international store, an entry pop-up is a good choice to ask the first time visitors to choose the country of their choice to continue shopping. You can also pre-select the country that can be changed. Make sure you remember the chosen country for returning shoppers and allow them to change the country any time.

    eCommerce homepage pop-up upon arrival

  • Social media is one of the most effective marketing mediums. Encourage returning shoppers who visit your store often to become your followers on social media or to invite their friends. While doing so, specify the number of your social followers as it would give you credibility. Also, incentivize social sharing as it would help you reach potential shoppers since your visitor’s social circle potentially has more of your target audience.

    Homepage pop-up to get social fans

  • Pop-ups are one of the easiest and fastest ways to build your email list. Welcome your new visitors and offer them the right incentive such as a coupon to subscribe as it is a good way to encourage purchases as well. Specify your newsletter frequency and provide a link to the privacy terms. Acknowledge the subscription by sending a welcome email.

    Email subscription pop-up

    Instead of giving discounts, you could even run a contest for a big ticket item to grow your email list.

    Email subscription pop-up

  • Pop-ups can be used to attract a shopper’s attention. When they are designed well they are one of the best ways to grow your email list or to improve your visitors shopping experience, to get social fans, or to promote your best deals etc.

    • Ensure the pop-up is not shown everytime a user lands on the homepage. Show the pop-up once a week or once in 15 to 30 days

    • A pop-up that shows up upon arrival is good to use only when its absolutely necessary to get user's input in order to continue using the site or to improve the user's site experience

    • Another thing you could do is to check the average time spent on the homepage and time your pop-up a few seconds before that or show the pop-up after the user scrolls down through say, 75% of the page

    • Let the shoppers know exactly what you are offering. Use a powerful headline, clearly state the benefit and have a prominent call to action

    • Use no more than one or two form fields. Avoid using images if possible or use no more than one simple image

    • Make sure it loads quickly, and make it easy to close. To grab your shopper's attention, use a lightbox effect (background shading)

    • Show different messages for new and returning visitors

    • Users are likely to ignore the pop-ups as advertisements. So, ensure that any critical content or important information is also available elsewhere, so they can find it later if they want to

    • Don't show more than one pop-up per visit and don’t forget to test your pop-ups before they go live

  • If you support multiple currencies on your site, then use a drop down to enable shoppers to select the currency and/or the country. Ensure the option to choose the currency/country is highly prominent. If you can automatically detect the geographic location of the shopper, then set the default currency/country based on the location.

    eCommerce website header - Currency selector

    Since automatic country selection is not always accurate, you can also ask the users to choose the country when they first enter the site and allow them to change it any time.

    eCommerce website header - Country selector

    If your store is localized in 2 or 3 languages, then list them using the language’s own name itself across the website header so that the user can toggle between them.

    If yours is a multilingual store, then use a drop down language selector that lists all the languages in alphabetical order.

    eCommerce website header - Language selector

  • Help customers who are stuck to find answers irrespective of what page they are on by providing a link to help/customer service along with the contact number on the website header. If they can find the information easily, then they don’t need to contact you for assistance and that would save your time and your customer's time.

    Customer service along with the contact number on the website header

  • A happy and prosperous New Year on behalf of all of us at eCommerce UX Design. We look forward to deliver fresh eCommerce UX and design ideas in 2015. A huge thank you to all our readers! Follow us on Twitter and Pinterest, add us on Google+ and like us on Facebook to stay in touch.

    Here’s a roundup of our 2014 posts.

    We are excited to hear your thoughts on your favorite posts.

  • The navigation menu should help visitors find the product they are looking for. It has to give them an overview of the available range of products.

    • Make your primary navigation prominent and simple with 5-7 choices

    • When naming your categories, use words that your users are familiar with instead of inventing creative category names

    • Make sure the top landing pages of your site are accessible from the main navigation

    • Use top or left navigation based on the nature of your website

    • Show the navigation menu consistently throughout the site except on the checkout page

    • Indicate where the user is by highlighting the link in the navigation menu.

    Navigation Menu

  • Promote the unique selling point of your store or feature your store’s most important perks/offers such as free shipping, easy returns, major markdowns, special deals etc in the promotion bar that appears on every page of the website. For more pointers on how to design a nice little promo bar, read this.

    Promo bar in the website header

  • A wishlist allows shoppers to save the products so that they can purchase it later. Provide a wishlist or save for later button on the website header, but make sure it is not too prominent that it distracts the other important elements. Show a link to the wishlist even if the user has not logged in and prompt to sign in or sign up when a product is added to wishlist as it is a good way to gather email addresses.


  • Many shoppers webroom before purchasing a product. If you have physical retail outlets, then help shoppers find ones that’s closest to them. Include a link to the store finder on the website header. You can even include stores in your search results when users search for cities or zip codes.

    Link to the store finder

  • Provide your customers with a private account where they can check all their previous orders and the status of their current order. Offer a link to the user account section if the user has logged in. If not, display registration and login links. If you offer any interesting incentive upon sign up, then mention that near the signup link.

    User account

  • Show off your order tracking link on the website header instead of hiding it behind help or customer service links so that the customers who use the guest checkout can easily access the order status page. Even shoppers who have a registered account might want to know the status of their order quickly without having to log in.

    Option to track order in the website header

  • The simple act of adding a phone number, preferably a toll free number on to the website header establishes trust and help customers feel comfortable shopping with you. Displaying the contact number on the website header will make it easy for shoppers to locate it irrespective of the page they are in. Do keep in mind that doing so will be of any good only if you have enough staff to respond to the incoming calls. Also, clearly specify if you answer the calls only during specific hours.

    Feature your customer service phone number