"It's not the looks that matter, it's the inner values that count". We have to vehemently disagree with this often-used phrase, at least when we think of e-commerce and well-designed online stores. Of course, the inner values count here too, first and foremost a good loading speed and SEO texts. However, an appealing design and clever user guidance are what convince potential buyers of a store in the first step.
The first impression counts!
So that you can make eyes at potential customers with your online store right from the start and thus stage your offer perfectly, you should pay attention to a few aspects. Learn how to turn your Shopify store into a design masterpiece in this post!
Table of contents
Step 1 - Shopify theme selection
Deciding on the right theme and thus the basic building block of the design is one of the most difficult ones. Therefore, in order to make it, you should ask yourself a few questions beforehand to find out what is important to you:
What products do you offer and how should they be presented? Do these products require a lot of visualization through videos and large images?
Who is your target audience? Are you selling B2B or B2C?
What kind of experience do you want to create for your customers? - The layout, image sizes, placement of text, etc. all contribute to the atmosphere that ultimately shapes the overall user experience.
What features do you want your store to have? Do you need a wide Instagram feed?
How are your competitors performing? Keep an eye on their online stores to implement things better than they do.
What's the budget for website design? - Additional plugins and apps can also cost more money, so plan your overall budget before committing to an expensive theme.
Reading tip: We have summarized more information about Shopify Themes for you here.
Step 2 - plan the structure of the page
The design and structure of your online store is essential, because what good is a pretty but dysfunctional page that few customers want to use (or can use) and drags down your conversion rate?
That's why you need to think about coherent navigation. This is an umbrella term for all the elements that allow users to reach specific information on your website. This includes the header navigation menu, product and category pages, filters, and the footer. Consider which elements and pages need to be in the main menu and which pages and links can be a little more hidden in the footer.
Keep one thing in mind: you don't have to reinvent the wheel. Let's be a little more drastic: You don't get to reinvent the wheel! Most users who shop online are used to certain placements. For example, no one would think to look for the main categories in the footer. Likewise, your visitors won't expect to see the T&Cs in the main menu. So take a look at how other successful stores divide their navigation and subdivision into main and sub categories and learn from it!
The following pages play an important role for your online store:
Homepage, as the first touch point between your products and the visitor, this has great hero images (or videos), the main product or current offers, recommended products or special categories, as well as appealing offers for customer loyalty (e.g. newsletter, Instagram feed).
Category pages, as a thematic organization of your individual products and for quick discovery by the customer, they should have descriptive texts and an SEO-friendly URL, and in the best case contain filters for sorting the products.
Product pages are crucial for selling your products. Therefore, pay attention to good product photos in multiple perspectives, all features and specifications, possible buttons for saving to watch lists and related products (up-sell and cross-sell).
Checkout page, here most visitors get out and leave your store without buying. Most often, this is due to sudden costs and complications. Therefore, enable the purchase as a guest, reduce the number of required fields to a minimum, show all accepted payment methods and inform through a banner, from which value free shipping is possible.
About Us Page, one of the most important pages to build trust and pick up the customer on an emotional level. Here you should tell a story about your product, your team, how you came to be, your values and vision, and your partners and initiatives. This is not about sales platitudes, but a look into the heart of your brand!
Contact page, give customers the opportunity to contact you! Just the fact that there is such a page creates trust.
Of course, you can integrate other pages into your store, such as a lookbook or FAQ page. However, these are primarily the pages that you must not neglect in any case.
Reading tip: We'll help you decide: buy Shopify Shop or build your own Shopify website?
Step 3 - Image and color world
The CI of Shape Republic is clearly recognizable and runs through all pages and channels.
According to the motto "show, don't tell" you should design your store. Of course, your texts must also be convincing, but it is your design that is most important for your store visitors. Without further ado, here is a checklist for images, colors and fonts of your online store:
Use sharp, high-resolution but compressed images.
Create product images from multiple perspectives - both atmospheric and cropped.
Use consistent image sizes and formats.
Enable a 360-degree photo tool on product pages so shoppers can see the entire view of a product.
Enable a zoom feature on product photos so buyers can view your items in more detail.
Use videos about your products or company when possible.
Use your logo as a guide - both in terms of the colors you use and the fonts -> fonts and font weights used here should be picked up in the store design.
Stick to the existing corporate design or existing design templates to create a consistent and coherent image on all channels.
Ideally, use only two different fonts and no more than three different colors.
Use color-contrasting call-to-action buttons to help customers navigate.
Don't be afraid of white space! Feel free to place elements with spacing. The rule is: create spatial proximity, for what belongs together, and spacing for things that cover new content.
If you paint up a wireframe before you start your implementation so you can decide which element to place where, you'll save yourself from feeling overwhelmed once you get started. However, Shopify is a very flexible store system that allows quick changes in most cases without much effort.
Reading tip: Here you can find an overview of frequently asked questions about Shopify and Shopify Plus.
Step 4 - User friendliness
Make sure the page loads quickly so potential buyers don't get frustrated and bounce. You can contribute to this by:
Compress images - free online tools such as tinyPNG can reduce the file size by about 50% without noticeably affecting the image quality
remove unneeded apps and code
Avoid carousels with many large images
To increase user-friendliness, you should also integrate a search bar in your store. This should be easy to find, in the best case have an auto-complete feature and provide results even for misspelled words.
Step 5 - Integrate trust-building elements
What good is it if your store looks flawless, but users don't trust you enough to actually make purchases? A contact and about us page can save you a lot of trouble, as already mentioned. However, there are other elements that can help you secure the trust of online shoppers. Therefore, think about the following points:
Customer ratings on your product pages
Seals from Trusted Shops, the Händlerbund and Co. always visible in your footer
A live chat function that works 24/7 and helps your customers with all their questions and problems
Customer support by mail or phone
The most common payment providers as well as a selection of popular shipping service providers
Reading tip: Do you already know these 6 Shopify hacks?
A key factor in creating an effective e-commerce site lies in the way your products and services are presented to visitors. Website design is incredibly important when it comes to visualizing and communicating brand messages. It can help meet users' expectations of your business and convey the story behind your brand.
Schlussendlich kommt es nicht nur auf Farben und Schriftarten an, sondern auf das Zusammenspiel mehrerer Faktoren. Haben Sie Ihren Shop fertiggestellt, sollten Sie Freunde und Kollegen zur Probe shoppen lassen, um herauszufinden, ob diese sich durch den Shop navigieren, wie von Ihnen erdacht und ob es irgendwelche Hindernisse gibt, die sie stört oder nicht verstehen.
If you prefer to leave the construction and design of your store in experienced hands, we are happy to assist you as a Shopify agency with many years of expertise. We also create design entirely according to your wishes. Get in touch with us!
Frequently asked questions about store design
What is UI and UX?
UI stands for User Interface and refers to the design of the user interface. UX, on the other hand, stands for User Experience and refers to the user-friendliness. Both are aspects that should be considered in a store design.
What makes a good store design in Shopify?
When it comes to store design, there are a few things that should be considered, including:
Choosing the appropriate Shopify theme.
The planning of the layout of the pages
The image and color scheme
The integration of trust-building elements
Can I customize my Shopify website design freely?
Shopify is designer friendly, which means that with Shopify you have complete control over the look of your store. All templates or assets can be edited with any text editor.