Designing for the User in eCommerce

When it comes to UX design, Avensia’s Seyamak Arkannia believes a useful parallel can still be drawn between the physical store and the e-commerce site. In a physical store, the customer journey through aisles to products and assortment is key to determining billboard and ad placement. That very same principle goes into designing an e-commerce site. 

Having the customer journey at heart in e-commerce means putting user experience, behavior and needs first, all of which are aspects of Interaction Design. With this in mind, the design process for an e-commerce website could be divided into three main steps. 

1. Understand your user. See their needs and how they might use your site. A B2C customer may want to browse extensively, whereas a B2B customer would benefit from a more to-the-point design.
2. Create prototypes. Start with Wireframes and try them out so that you can benchmark the Interaction Design before moving on to Graphic Design. 
3. Think of different devices. How do your users approach your site on different devices? What do they need? Ask yourself these questions, and develop accordingly. 

There are multiple examples of e-commerce sites that have focused too much on Graphic Design or tried to squeeze a desktop site into a mobile version. These are often messier and harder to navigate.