Generic selectors
Exact matches only
Search in title
Search in content
Search in posts
Search in pages

Category Archives: Website Design

  • -

Top 10 Tips for E-Commerce Websites

Top 10 Tips for E-Commerce Websites

1. Tailored Solution
Our first tip to building a successful online store is to ensure that your newly acquired E-Commerce website is tailored for your actual products or services. There are many off-the-shelf e-commerce solutions being advertised that appear to be cheap and quick to set up – they generally are. What you need to consider is that these E-Commerce solutions are template websites built to serve many different applications and you will end up having to market your products and services with what they have available in regard to features (if any). In most cases, this is far from being ideal and the compromises you are likely to have to make could well loose the business to your competitors who have invested in bespoke sites built for the sole purpose of selling your product.

2. Clear Navigation and Accurate Product Search
Most E-Commerce websites require the visitor to drill down several levels to reach things like product details and attributes. For this reason, visibly clear navigation and extended product search facilities are often required – ensure that your E-Commerce solution makes it easy for a customer to find his/her way around … otherwise you may find them going elsewhere. It is essential that your customer does not get lost and that you provide a clear way backwards as well as forwards.

3. Layout and Product Presentation
A well thought-out E-Commerce website will have addressed the two very important issues of layout and presentation. In a lot of cases, a store owner may need to show a lot of product-related information is a limited amount of space – ensure your E-Commerce solution gives you layout and image presentation options. Examples of items to have in your marketing arsenal include ‘tabbed’ product page elements, ‘expandable’ divisions and eye-catching image Galleries or Slideshows.

4. Data Feeds
Your own website should be only one of many outlets for your products. Data feeds are common practice and ensures that one way or another – the public gets to see your wares. Some common marketplaces include Amazon, Twenga, ShopMania and Yahoo. Ensure your E-Commerce website has the facilities to export your products easily – you do not want to have to copy and paste them every week, especially if your range runs into the hundreds.

5. Customer Confidence
At some point, you are going to ask your customer to put his/her hand into their pocket – and this important step is where a lot of E-Commerce websites fall over. Ensuring that your shopping cart ticks all the right boxes when it comes to security goes a long way to gaining and maintaining your customers trust. To this end, it is important that your E-Commerce solution provides the means to demonstrate the steps that you have taken to safeguard the customers’ personal details. Items to consider here include SSL and PCI compliance certificates, the use of common/trusted payment gateways and privacy policies.

6. Incentives to Buy
Another valuable tip is to give your customer an incentive to buy. Although not always necessary, more and more E-Commerce websites are providing money-off coupons, loyalty schemes and up/cross sells in order to win the business. It is recommended that your E-Commerce solution has something up its sleeve to compete in this regard.

7. Checkout Process
The checkout process is a thing that is often over-looked by store owners, but can be the point at which your customer says ‘bye bye’ – so it does need to be configurable as a minimum. Ensure that whatever E-Commerce website you opt for allows you to configure or even by-pass the signing-up process … ask for too much information, or include too many steps and your customer will abandon the order. A lot of template E-Commerce websites use fixed forms or only allow for minor changes, be careful!

8. Feedback and Product Endorsement
Quality feedback is essential for so many reasons, as is, the ability for your customers to endorse your product by way of recommendations and testimonials. Not all E-Commerce solutions have the built-in ability to solicit for this vital information – ensure that yours does and reap the rewards!

9. Order Fulfilment
Unless your products or services are virtual, you will need to include shipping and carriage – this can result in resentment if you overcharge or provide a poor, restricted delivery service. This can lead to bad press or even order abandonment if you get it wrong. Any E-Commerce solution that you choose should have integrated order fulfilment that you can configure and, it needs to be as robust as is possible providing the customer with options. Provide your customers with several affordable delivery options and safeguard the order. Your E-Commerce website needs to allow you to offer variety or run the risk of loosing the order.

10. After Sales Strategy
Our final tip in respect to choosing the right E-Commerce website is to choose one that allows you to easily access the customer information gleaned from the sale. This is important information that can be used for after sales campaigns – like new product advertising, future sales promotions and seasonal offers. Your E-Commerce solution should facilitate the export of customer information for use in external applications and provide integrated mailing functionality to compliment your after sales strategy.


  • -
HTML5 and CSS3

CSS3 and HTML5

CSS3 and HTML5

The World Wide Web Consortium (W3C) have finally released CSS3 after the 12 year over-haul of CSS2.1. Now, all major browsers are HTML5 compatible and have adopted the new CSS3 features - giving hope to struggling web developers. Combined, these two powerful tools, can create fantastic solutions for modern websites needing to cope with the explosion of differing screen resolutions as the mobile markets come online. Both CSS3 and HTML5 are still not completely 'signed off' and there will be further releases in the future as pockets of 'recommendations' become finalised and ear-marked for general release. An exciting future for sure and a timely response to the many problems facing designers derived from the rapid advancement in mobile technology.

HTML5 Logo

W3C have now modularised CSS and in CSS3 there are currently in excess of 50 modules that we can count - each addressing different subjects of styling and layout. Without doubt, the most important of these modules is 'Media Queries' which quite simply allows website designers to apply conditions to a style sheet to accommodate fluidity.

CSS3 Logo

HTML5 and CSS3 are merely two of many technologies that are evolving and adjusting to the problems presented by the modern internet. Understanding these changes and picking the right solutions (of which there are many) is something that we at Saxon Websites™ do well. All new websites designed by ourselves are built specifically to our clients instructions and will include all of this new technology and lots more besides - we only use current and up to date web technologies.


  • -
Focus on Website Graphics

Focus on Website Graphics

Focus on Website Graphics

Most graphic design companies are market-orientated and are set up to provide a number of solutions across a number of different platforms - platforms like posters, business cards, advertising boards and even TV adverts. Saxon Websites™ focuses solely on websites, so, when it comes to graphic design and company logos, we are able to give you just what you want and need – a 10ft, pixel perfect image costing thousands of pounds is what we call ‘over-kill’ in the context of website design.

Focus on Website Graphics

We know that a quality, 800 x 600 high resolution image is as good as you are ever likely to need (in most cases) – and we don’t need a team to produce it either … all we need is a skilled web designer that knows his way around Photoshop. The benefits of trading solely in website graphic design is that we also understand about loading times, penalties handed out by some search engines for non-optimised images and image security techniques … amongst other things.


  • -
Logos and Graphic Design, Free!

Logos and Graphic Design, Free!

Logos and Graphic Design, Free!

Logos and Graphic Design, Free!

There are many, many companies that provide logos and graphic design services but it’s just another invoice that you can expect in the post if you use them without really needing to use them. In most cases, our clients are happy to use our integrated logo and graphic design services, included free as part of the overall web development service that we provide. To be honest, there is very little that we can’t do that a specialist company can – but we are ‘man-enough’ to let you know when we can’t provide what you require and professional enough to point you in the direction of someone that can. Logos and Graphic Design are services that we provide for free here at Saxon Websites™.


  • -
Corporate imaging - getting started

Corporate imaging – getting started

Corporate imaging – getting started

So how do we start getting your company onto the ladder leading towards gaining a corporate identity or achieving a corporate image? Well, we incorporate your ideas and designs into a ‘style-sheet’ and apply it to the website that we are building for you. It means that things like fonts, colour schemes and layout can be managed dynamically and helps to deliver your message more consistently. We then carefully look at your companies interaction with the customer and ensure that your forms, news-letters and down-loadable material all enforce that very same message.

Corporate imaging - getting started

We will advise you every step of the way armed with years of experience. One such example may be the use of a particular font or colour – although the one you have chosen is great … it may not be installed on client machines as standard and will probably, in a lot of cases, be replaced with a less effective alternative. In this instance, we will point this out and advise a different solution. This is a simple example agreed, but can make a big difference to your chances of success if over-looked.


  • -
Creating a corporate image begins with your website

Creating a corporate image begins with your website

Creating a corporate image begins with your website

Lets make it clear, the world of corporate imaging is massive and we are not experts in the peripheral arenas such as branded goods or tradeshow marketing, both of which are part of the bigger picture … but we can get your website, your forms your newsletters all singing in unison and from the same song-sheet. This, after all, is likely to be where your first contact with the customer occurs and it is important that the process begins here.

Creating a corporate image begins with your website

Once you get your company associated with a given product or service – the marketing benefits associated with your new corporate identity become real and once capitalised upon could transform your business overnight. Two letters, the letter ‘F’ and ‘B’ placed together in a certain font and in a certain colour takes on a completely different meaning – corporate imaging is without doubt something that you should be taking into account when considering launching your new website. Saxon Websites™ has the experience and can get you on track from the very onset of your journey to the top of the tree.