THE E-COMMERCE Experience Jessica Frost put together a guide to creating a memorable online shopping platform for your customers.
all and collect and small online shopping operations became the saving grace for a lot of clinics with clients rallying behind the concept of ‘support small’ throughout the pandemic. But with books now bursting with filled appointments, and clients still looking for the convenience of shopping from home between appointments, creating a robust eCommerce experience becomes more important than ever.
Choosing your platform There are quite a few different platforms you can choose from to build and manage your eCommerce site including options to build from scratch or add shopping functionality to your existing website. They can seem overwhelming to navigate, so we’ve rounded up the most popular choices to give you the rundown of each option. Shopify: known for being quick and easy to set up, Shopify is one of the most popular ecommerce software platforms. It can cope with high traffic and provides an intuitive interface with a lot of plug-in options that make it fairly easy to customise your site. WooCommerce: if you have an existing WordPress website, WooCommerce is a free and flexible add-on that will give you all the necessary functions of an eCommerce site. While you can get creative and customise the site quite a bit, it’s not as easy to use as other options but there are online guides with some great tutorials available. Wix: designed for total beginners, Wix and its WixStores 44 | SPA+CLINIC
eCommerce Checklist: Kaelon Atelier Beauty use menu categories to make it easy for clients to shop its eCommerce site.
• is the shopping journey intuitive? • does the online shop match your branding? • is it mobile friendly? • are products described in enough detail? • are you connecting with your client?
plugin make it easy to drop and drag the elements you need to build your site. Its features are easy to use and while the platform isn’t as customisable as others, its limits aren’t too noticeable if you’re just trying to create a nice looking and functioning online store. Magento: as a self-hosted solution, Magento provides complete flexibility and unlimited options for building your site. However, if you don’t know how to code, you’ll likely need a professional on your side to get the site up and running.
The nuts and bolts You can get free or affordable templates, sometimes called themes, for all the above platforms that do a lot of the hard work for you. With the basics in place, you can then upload your images into the galleries, add product copy, change the fonts and colours to match your branding and you’re halfway there. As you’re editing your template, the most important thing to keep in mind is the user experience. Ultimately, it needs to be very easy for clients to find the products they need, add them to their cart, and check out with as few clicks as possible.