Essential Tips for Starting an Online Business with Magento
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Magento is indisputably the world’s most preferred e-commerce platform, empowering online stores of all levels across the globe. Magento was first introduced in 2008 and has been consistently growing since then, in terms of the number of users, the size of the merchants and, of course, it’s capabilities. Here we are trying to cover all the possible tips to get the most out of your online business with Magento.
That said, Magento, like any other e-commerce platform, does have some areas for improvement but these can be addressed without too much of an overhead, particularly with some of the third party extensions and integrations out there and following these essential practices that will optimize the overall performance of your store.
1-Optimize Magento Performance
Magento is a ‘heavy’ eCommerce platform and might run slow if not set up right and there’s nothing more annoying than a website that takes forever to load.
Follow these tips to speed up your Magento store:
–Choose fast web hosting: Choosing a reliable and fast web host will ensure that your website gets sufficient resources and deliver a faster web experience to your users.
-Choose the latest version: Make sure you’re always running the latest Magento as they generally contain bug fixes, security patches, and performance improvements.
-Enable caching: Enabling Magento cache will help increase the performance of an average Magento website.
-Gzip compression: Gzip compresses web pages and stylesheets at the server level before sending them over to the browser.
-Update indexes: Through indexing, Magento transforms your data such as products, categories, etc, and any such transformation should be reindexed to boost the performances of your storefront.
-Expire Headers: Expire headers tell the browser whether they should request a file from the server or access it from the browser’s cache.
-Enable flat catalogue: This speeds up your product collection by generating new tables on the fly and stores every necessary data related to your product or category.
-Image optimization: Almost half of a website weight consists of images so compressing them can drastically decrease the download time.
2-Choose The Right Theme
An eCommerce website needs to provide its potential customers with nothing less than an exceptional shopping experience and your website’s look and feel plays a major role in it.
Your website’s design should clearly reflect your brand and help prospective buyers to understand your business and expectations from your company.
One should consider the following points when looking for the right theme for their Magento store:
-Responsiveness: Make sure your website displays properly on mobile phones and tablets and adapts to smaller screens.
-Magento compatibility: Check if the theme is compatible with your Magento edition and its version.
-Included extensions: While choosing a template, don’t forget to pay attention to extensions, which are included, because it’s more cost-efficient than buying them separately.
-Scalability: You’ll require a theme that can adapt to the new business requirements, so you should check beforehand how deeply you can customize your theme.
-Live demo: Every great theme comes with a Live Demo and you should definitely check it out and play around for a bit before purchasing.
-Read reviews: It is quite helpful to know about the user experience and support services delivered by the theme provider.
3-Structure Your Store’s Navigation
Website navigation, when done right, is great for your visitors and SEO performance. Good website navigation makes it easy for your users to find what they want and for search engines to crawl which results in more conversions and greater search visibility.
You can follow these tips to create user-friendly site navigation:
-Be consistent: Consistent navigation promotes ease of use and increases your visitors’ ability to find relevant information more quickly.
-Well defined categories: Each section, category and their sub-categories in your navigation must be clearly and visually defined.
-All navigation elements must be click-able: When using multiple categorical divisions in your navigation, all heading elements should be clickable links.
-Precise navigation titles: Visitors should have a general idea of what they would find on a page even before clicking the link.
-Add ALT text to every click-able image: This ensures that everybody knows what the link is, regardless of how they are viewing your site.
-Optimize your search: The in-site search feature must produce relevant results and compensate for misspellings and even show related items to avoid “no products found” scenarios.
4-Optimise Product Pages:
-Accurate product information: Avoid any surprise and display relevant details like price, remaining stock, tax, handling charges and delivery all on the product page itself.
-High-quality product images: Products with good images will have a better conversion rate than products without images or with images in less quality.
-Intriguing product’s description: Write engaging product description and the short description and list features in bullet points. Avoid using standard manufacturer’s description.
-Videos for best selling products: Videos would simply allow users to absorb more information faster than any other content form.
-Customers reviews: They are now essential for any e-commerce sites as the study shows that 61% of customers read online reviews before making a purchase.
5-Optimize Checkout Process:
-Avoid repetitive inputs: Ensure that customer don’t have to enter the same information twice during checkout process as users don’t like to spend too much time at checkout.
-Preserve form information: Nobody likes to enter all information again, so save form inputs in case the customer misses out a needed field or in case of validation error.
-Linear form design: Each input field should be one below the other and the input field length should match the expected field input.
-Provide example text: Adding a placeholder text to input fields will make it easier for your customers.
-Display appropriate validation error message: Highlight the error field and display the clear error message.
-Simple password selection: Allow customers to add a password that is simple and easy to remember.
-Avoid surprises: Never surprise the customer at checkout by extra costs.
These are a handful of areas that can be quick wins when making a move to Magento which will have a substantial impact on your online mercantile. Do you know other areas where you’ve seen assured results? Share your comments below – We’d love to hear from you.