If online retailers want to be successful, then they need to delve into the minds of their customers. Knowing exactly what might being going through your target audience’s minds when they are browsing online can help you build a carefully constructed website and shopping experience that converts.

Most of all, people want their online shopping experience to be quick, simple and secure. Here are some things that might be going through your customer’s minds when they are shopping on your ecommerce website.

  1. Is this website secure?

First and foremost, people won’t shop on a website unless they feel it’s secure. First impressions are key, so your homepage should instantly make them feel confident. People also need to be reassured at various stages of the buying process that a website is safe and secure. Make sure they can clearly see information such as your privacy policy and secure payment methods.

  1. Do I trust this website?

As someone is browsing a website, they will be considering whether it is a website they trust. Whether or not they decide to stay on your site can depend on the content, design and trust signals that they pick up on. Having things like accreditations, industry awards and reviews at key stages in the customer journey can help to convert customers and build their trust.

  1. What do other people think of this product/website?

Something called ‘social proof’ can influence whether a customer buys something or not. People are more inclined to buy things that they see as popular. If lots of other people have bought a product or given it glowing reviews then obviously it is something that’s in demand. 85% of shoppers read online reviews before using local businesses.

Visitors on your website are probably wondering what others think of the website or product that they are looking at. Having things like a list of your best selling products and saying things like ‘people who bought this also bought x,y, z’ can significantly increase conversion.

  1. Why should I buy from this specific brand?

It’s natural to wonder why you would buy something from a specific brand and not consider other brands selling the same thing. Websites need to communicate a compelling enough message for customers to buy their products. When this is going through someone’s mind, they need to be informed as to how your brand stands out, what your USP is and what makes you different.

  1. Do I really need to buy this product?

Extremely impulsive shoppers may not ask themselves this question, but most people will take a moment to decide whether they really need a particular product. They may look at an item, think about it for a minute and then make a final decision, or they may leave it days, weeks or even months to come back and purchase something.

Online retailers need to make customers feel like somehow they will miss out if they don’t buy something, and create some kind of urgency. For examples, putting a special offer that runs out on a certain date, or selling limited edition products.

  1. Does this product look visually appealing?

Perhaps the most influential factor on a person’s buying decisions is the visual aspect of a website or product. 92.6% of people said that visuals are the top influential factor affecting a purchasing decision (vouchercloud).

Online shoppers will usually only order from websites they like the look of, and buy products that are visually appealing. This is why the design of your websites and the quality of the images you use to sell products is so important.