Top Crucial Elements Your Ecommerce Website Should Have [2018 Update]

4 min read

Every second counts, when it comes to an ecommerce website development. Time is money, so it takes a fraction of a second for a customer to admire a website.

What is ecommerce website? Without a proper ecommerce website you’ll be able to significantly boost your business.

However, no matter what irresistible items or awesome content your online store has. There is a possibility you may lose potential visitors if your website lacks significant features.

All it takes is a split second for either your website to succeed or to fail. However, how can you get your website has everything necessary? Luckily, you came to the right place. In this episode, we gathered a vital list of features for a successful ecommerce website.

P.s. If you’re patient enough, you’ll find a super important tip at the end of this article.

Call To Action

There’s one thing you can definitely be sure of in the world of affiliate marketing — CTA. CTA (Call To Action) is an instruction to a specific audience that is created in order to engage customers and them effect an instant response.

The CTA should be identifiable and should encourage the shopper to enquire further. Its main purpose is:

  • For making a sale. As soon as a customer clicks a link that says “learn more” or “buy now,” this usually means they are interested in what you want to say.

Interest means sales.

In case, you didn’t make it easy for the shopper, you could miss sales.

  • To gather information. The more people move through your site, the more they understand what exactly they’re looking for. Sometimes, it’s CTA that gets someone interested in something.
  • You want to Inform them. By taking visitors through your website, you help them understand your product better as well as show a great deal of interest in your company and product. Sometimes, a call to action is needed just to get someone interested in something.

Product Search and Categories

Every online store should have an easy navigation through the various products. This will create a friendly user experience. Having added a search option, product catalog as well as an ability to compare several products, you’ll lower a user’s effort to find what they need and speed up their search on the website. Here are the ingredients you’ll need:

  • Product categories and online catalog. Online shipping has its own fair share of disadvantages. Online shoppers do not have the ability to physically inspect or try on the items being considered for the purchase. However, you can help customers understand their needs by designing a product catalog, which will offer an in depth look into the various online products.

Smooth and Convenient Checkout Procedure

The majority of customers consider a smooth checkout procedure as a crucial element to a high conversion rate.

Im most of the cases, customers abandon their carts mid-visit. This happens due to a complicated check out process However, just because customers reached the end of the sales funnel, it doesn’t mean the work is done.

Nobody wants to have cycle through more than a couple pages in order to purchase a product. A simplified checkout process covers one whole page will significantly improve user experience. Nevertheless, it’s not always possible. Everything in between gives customers a chance to be frustrated. Customers are then left with two options — either carry on with the purchase or steer away from the website.

Here are some key elements that can help you simplify the checkout process:

  • Don’t include too many fields. Use the most necessary ones (those that can help you get paid and make the delivery).
  • In case, your ecommerce platform makes them available, you can use some purchase extensions, which will allow improving the customer’s ease of use. To optimize and refine your checkout process, you may use a form creator extension.

Show How You Win Trust

One of the spread obstacles in winning the customers trust is the product reviews implementation. A negative review left by the consumers will influence decision of the potential buyers. However, ecommerce business can combat and tackle such negative feedback using a smart strategy, which researches into the matter and solves the problem for the customer.

Testimonial Placement

It’s really important to mention that a testimonial is not the first thing visitor sees when he visits your website. First and foremost, let them see what your brand is all about. By the way, it should be followed by your products.

Depending on the type of ecommerce website you own, you need to place video testimonials accordingly. For example, if you own an ecommerce marketplace, you can place a video testimonials on the vendor sign up page.

One of the drawbacks of having reviews on your product page is that sometimes negative reviews may hit conversions adversely.

By the way, don’t forget to encourage people to rate reviews. As a result, the most helpful ones will be visible to all.

Admin Panel

Somewhere in the process of the development, we faced the following dilemma: is it better to modify the existing control panel or we should create a custom admin panel from scratch? We realized that this is a serious question as a proper admin panel may become an effective solution and save much time and money for the client.

Here is how we approached this challenge

As a company with an extensive experience in Ecommerce, we inherited fair share of life hacks. We used to work on a project, which was an auto sound website based on 1R Commerce.

We all know, Spree Commerce comes with robust customization capabilities so it would be a waste of opportunity not to unleash its full potential.

Spree Commerce admin panel includes a huge number of various tools for a website management.

Basically, we faced 3 main challenges:

  • Not all options were needed so that we decided to remove the inessential ones;
  • We had to provide various roles for the users as some of them needed to see and manage only their own sections in the admin panel.
  • We developed some must-need features, including Responses or Installation centers. Additionally, the control panel should have been added an option for their management. The main question is whether we should rewrite the existing panel or create a completely new one?

Before we made a final decision, we compared the essential pros and cons.


  • Functionality. 95% of the required functionality already exists in the Spree Commerce control panel. It should take around 1–2 days to determine, find and remove all unnecessary options, considering that Spree is an open-source project. On the other hand, it may take us 3–4 weeks to create the same, but a new one. 1 point to the Spree control panel modification.
  • Test coverage. The control panel in Spree, as well as the other functionality, is fully covered with tests. Writing test manually will take much more time.
  • Reliability. The first version of Spree came out in 2007. Since then, more than 45000 e-commerce websites have been created with its help. Spree has been actively developed and supported till now. This means that the platform was tested by thousands of users. When writing one’s own solution there definitely can be a couple of bugs. We all make mistakes. Besides that, bugs can reveal themselves after some time, and not always right after development is finished.
  • Front-end. Spree control panel is user-friendly and has a nice design. To create something similar in our panel we would have to find and apply some themes. As a result, this may take a few days.?


  • AJAX. Native Spree Commerce panel has no AJAX. All forms are submitted by a common method — page reload. It’s quite inconvenient and time consuming. And if we decided to write a solution from scratch, we may add this feature from the very beginning.
  • Roles differentiation. To differentiate the rights according to the roles, we had to use a special gem spree_admin_roles_and_access, which works on CanCan. We even had to do some tricks and to reinvent the wheel. Why? Because of peculiarities regarding Spree Commerce control panel building and the fact, that the last gem version was developed for Spree 2–4–0-rc3, and we used v. 2.4.6. For example, there are forms with different models in the tab “Settings”. A User with “SEO” role should be able to change SEO and META fields. The others are not necessary for him at all. In gem’s documentation, it is said that there is an option of giving the changing rights only to specific fields in the table. But in fact it does not work, perhaps owing to the old version of Spree for which this gem was developed.

So what does this say to us? In a nutshell, if you are going to rewrite the default panel from scratch, you will definitely face some issues. However, as for the rest (functionality, tests, beautiful interface and reliability), a modified Spree solution goes far beyond in variety of options. To spare you the anticipation, we went for the latter option, which made … (benefits).

The Bottom Line

Since all ecommerce websites are different, there is no single perfect solution for them all. On the other hand, you should always think what your business really needs in the first place.

E-commerce features, which were covered above, are the tiny grains of sand. These features are crucial to the business; sensible, attractive, trustworthy and easy-to-use. Adapting them for E-commerce store will determine whenever your online business will succeed!

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