Tuesday, January 23, 2018

5 ways to adapt your online store in 2018

The new year has arrived, and with it comes an opportunity for change. So, take a look at your online store – what can be done to elevate it into the future? These five ways to adapt it will ensure it strives in 2018 and the years ahead.

Is your hosting provider good enough? 

Think about how your store is doing. Are you receiving more and more traffic as time goes on? Are you unhappy with the reliability and/or support of your hosting provider? If so, it might be time to reconsider. Begin the year with a new hosting provider that fulfils your demands and meets your needs.

Shared hosting is ideal for small online stores, as highlighted by Ecommerce Guide, but if your store is beginning to grow bigger, it may be time to make that step up and invest in a dedicated server. It’ll cope better with larger audiences, with faster speed times and a much lower risk of any downtime.

Ensure your design is set for the future

One of, if not the most effective way of getting customers to stick around on your store is through its design. Consider your store’s ease of access – can customers find their way around easily? Or are vital links and features hidden behind a garish, difficult design?

Although it’s good to be independent and innovative, look at competitors to see where their designs succeed. Flat design is often the way forward and looks to be so for the significant future, so ensure your online store brings your products and services to the forefront, with a minimal design to prevent any distractions or confusion.

Think about mobile browsing

Online shopping via mobile is becoming more popular than ever, and so it’s important your mobile design is just as forward-thinking and easy to use as the desktop version. 62% of e-commerce shoppers used their mobile phones to make purchases in the last six months, which means it’s definitely a priority.

Upon mobiles, online stores should be quick, simple and striking, bringing the product to the forefront and omitting any unnecessary steps – the process from browsing to buying should be minimal and fast. As handheld devices begin to overtake desktops, it’s important to be prepared.
Consider changes in the market

Make sure you remain vigilant and prepared for any shifts or changes in the market. Trends often change and phases of popularity for certain products can be short-lived, and so it’s crucial you remain a frontrunner and get ahead of the competition – innovation is key. Observe the market and be prepared for the tides of new demands and expiring products, and be prepared to reinvent and introduce new ideas to keep customers coming back. Remember – if you’re not forward-thinking, they’ll likely end up looking elsewhere.

Employ new levels of security

Hackers and attackers are always finding new ways to breach the security of online stores, so make sure you’re prepared for any eventuality. Ensure your security is top-level – especially when dealing with a large number of customers – as confidential details could easily be discovered should an attack be successful.

SQL injection is a common threat in e-commerce, but thankfully there are many methods of prevention that’ll protect you from any harm. This is crucial – should a customer fall victim to a hack, they’ll likely never shop with you again.

Do you have any more tips for adapting an online store for the future ahead? Be sure to let us know in the comments below.

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