2021 ecommerce web design trendsI’m sure you’ve heard the old phrase time and time again to never judge a book by its cover. This is, in theory, a good principle, but in the world of ecommerce, it’s not something that’s been adopted by customers.

The design of your website does matter and when shoppers arrive on it they immediately form opinions based on what they see. A study done by WebFX found that 94% of first impressions are based on the design of your website.

That’s why you should consider enhancing the look of your site by incorporating a new ecommerce web design trend. In this article, we’ll talk about different ecommerce trends for 2021 and how you can apply them to your website. But first, we’ll discuss the role a good design plays on your website.


Pages of an Ecommerce Website that Need Design

The design is important on every page of your website because it affects how customers relate to your brand. It also impacts the way your brand is perceived. This impression can either encourage them to remain on your site and view your offerings or leave in search of a competitor.

Below, we’ve selected a few pages on ecommerce websites that benefit from good design.


1. Homepage.

Your homepage serves a simple purpose: to communicate who you are and what you do. You should convey your message immediately and give customers an idea of what to expect from the rest of your site.

Your homepage should also be welcoming and inviting as shown in the example below from BigCommerce merchant Burrow. As soon as visitors arrive on the site, they’re greeted by an image of a couple seated on a big, comfy couch. Burrow further conveys what they’re selling through their headline and call to action button.

homepage design

When people arrive on your homepage, this is what they expect to find:

  • Contact information
  • Simple navigation
  • Description of your company
  • A clean design


2. Product pages.

Your product pages should be designed with your ideal customer in mind. They should convey the value of your product in a way that entices customers to buy.

They should also communicate in detail both the features and benefits of your product. Product features include color, size, weight, material, etc., and focus on outward appearance. Benefits describe how your product satisfies the needs and desires of your customers. These are more important and should be stressed over features because they’re often the reason a shopper buys your product.

Product pages should also reflect your brand’s personality while keeping your products front and center. Bliss does a great job of this. Their product page highlights the product, communicates the full value, and reflects their brand personality.

product page design
As you design your own product pages, here are some things you should do:

  • Use high-quality images. Poorly-lit photos can deter customers from purchasing. Your product images are so important that 93% of consumers consider them when making a purchase. You should include several high-quality images that successfully showcase your product.
  • Be clear about your prices. One thing that often keeps people from purchasing on ecommerce websites is unexpected charges at checkout –  it’s the reason for 56% of abandoned carts. Product pages should include all pricing information, displaying any additional charges so that customers aren’t surprised when it’s time to pay.
  • Provide informative product descriptions. We touched on this a bit earlier but your product descriptions should be thoroughly written, completely conveying what customers can expect from purchasing your product. Go into great detail and create unique descriptions that help shoppers make an informed buying decision.


3. Checkout page.

Customers these days are in a hurry; they expect to checkout as quickly as possible. They don’t want to go through an overcomplicated checkout process requiring them to register or create an account. Your checkout page should guide them through the purchase process smoothly and efficiently.

The design of this page should be simple, only including the elements that are necessary for buyers to finalize their purchases. The addition of other elements could cause customers to lose focus and abandon their carts.

A good example is shown below from BigCommerce retailer Natori. Their checkout page is simple and free from distractions – only showing information that’s necessary to complete the purchase.

checkout page design

7 Ecommerce Web Design Trends to Look out for in 2021

Gone are the days of stiff, boring websites. These days, it’s easy to have fun with website design and adopt a new trend that allows you to stand out from your competition. That’s why we looked around and discovered 7 ecommerce web design trends that you should know about going into 2021.


1. Personalized experiences.

More customers are beginning to expect personalized experiences from brands. These encounters make them feel special and valued by your company.

An easy way for an ecommerce store to adopt this trend is through the use of targeted email marketing campaigns. By using URL tracking on your website, you can easily follow the actions customers take and then follow up via email. Continue sending tailored emails to those customers and enhance their experience even more.

Personalize all your email communications, starting with the subject line. A subject line containing your customer’s name will make your email 26% more likely to get opened.

You can further personalize your emails by sending celebratory messages for customer birthdays, anniversaries, and other special events.

This tactic is a great way to set a standard of care and take your customer service experience to the next level.


2. Micro-animation.

Micro animations are small, brief animations designed to help customers as they interact online with your products. These design elements make your website easier to use. They also bring products to life by giving shoppers an amplified understanding of your items.

Brands who adopt this trend enhance their customer experience, making it easier for shoppers to view products online. One example of a micro animation is hovering your mouse over a product image and having it zoom in to get a better look.

Revelry uses micro animations perfectly. They offer bridesmaid’s dresses in a variety of colors and when customers hover their mouse over the different color options, a larger swatch pops up, giving shoppers a better idea of how the pattern looks.

micro-animation design


3. Minimalism and flat design.

Minimalism, also known as flat design, is a trend that’s taken off and can be seen on a variety of ecommerce websites. This design style is attractive to customers because it’s free from distracting elements.

The good thing about minimalism is that it can be applied to ecommerce websites in different industries. It has often been associated with the use of white space, but there’s more to it than that.

Brands have been moving toward colorful minimalism, combining simple designs with a small amount of bold, daring colors.

These bold colors can also be combined with neutral design elements to help customers navigate through your website.

You can apply this trend to your site by taking a simple design and punching it up with the addition of striking typography or bright colors.

But, when using bright colors remember to incorporate them sparingly. Using too many could distract your customers and take away from your overall design.


4. Accessible design.

Ecommerce websites are responding to the needs of people with disabilities, ensuring their sites support the interaction of as many visitors as possible. Having a website that every customer can use expands your reach to a bigger audience.

Accessibility, however, is more than a trend. For ecommerce store owners, the incorporation of accessible designs is mandatory.

Making your website accessible is easier than you might think. It can be done by making simple changes that require very little effort. Some elements that improve accessibility include:

  • Distinct color contrasts between text and backgrounds
  • Adding alt tags on your images
  • Adding visible labels that describe what should be entered on form fields
  • Providing visible focus indicators that show up around links when using keyword navigation

By making these small changes you ensure your site can be used by more people. Therefore, no customer is excluded from the shopping experience.


5. Visual commerce.

Visual commerce refers to highlighting visuals of your product through the use of things like close-up shots, videos, and 360-degree views. It gives customers the opportunity to connect with your brand and learn more about your products.

Online merchants are using visual commerce as another method of improving the customer experience. The basic idea behind it is to elevate ordinary images that customers commonly see and take them to the next level.

You can incorporate visual commerce by leveraging video editing tools and adding engaging videos on your product pages.

These will help to overcome any obstacle your customer may experience – like not being able to touch or handle the product in person. They could also result in fewer returns, eliminating ecommerce buyer’s remorse.


6. Unconventional layouts.

One way to perk up the look of your website is by changing the layout. This can make the experience much more interesting and memorable for your customers.

Ecommerce websites are moving away from traditional layouts and opting instead for ones that are distinctive and unique. These designs allow you to highlight your brand and products while promoting a signature look. They’re also much more dynamic and exciting compared to traditional layouts.

One example being adopted is the asymmetrical website design. This style emphasizes products without adding other visual elements that could cause distraction.

This design works best for ecommerce stores with smaller product catalogs. For larger stores with more offerings, it’s better to stick with a traditional web design that simplifies online navigation.


7. Perfectly designed for mobile.

The majority of website traffic comes from mobile devices. In fact, mobile accounts for 65% of all ecommerce traffic and 53% of sales.

To meet the demand, ecommerce websites are becoming increasingly mobile-friendly. Many online retailers are focusing on designs that look good across multiple devices like smartphones and tablets.

This trend is not expected to lose significance. Instead, it’s becoming more important.

BigCommerce makes it easy to design a mobile-friendly website. As you go through the design process, the platform shows you how your design looks on desktop and mobile. You can then continue to make adjustments until you’re satisfied with the look as shown on both devices.

mobile responsive design


Wrapping Up

Who said ecommerce websites had to be boring? There’s always room to add some pizzazz and punch them up a little, especially since doing so could lead to better customer experiences.

Following trends can be fun and exciting.

It’s important to note, however, that not all trends should be used by every ecommerce store. You need to evaluate if your target audience would be receptive to the trend.

So, now that you’ve seen some simple things that are easy to incorporate, the big question is this: Which design trend are you going to try first?


About the Author – Leigh-Anne Truitt is a part of the content and SEO team at BigCommerce where she researches and discovers strategies to increase organic traffic. Prior to joining the ecommerce industry, Leigh-Anne perfected her marketing skills at The University of Texas at Austin and CanIRank.


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