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The complete guide to eCommerce

Beat the competition with these insights - from finding the best eCommerce platform for your business to responsive design and optimising your checkout experience.

The complete guide to eCommerce

Online shopping is fast becoming the primary way people buy goods and services. It now accounts for 30% of the total UK retail market (up from 20% in early 2020), with at least 82% of Brits shopping online at least once. As it continues to grow, online stores have an opportunity to maximise their business and take on a raft of new customers. Here, we bring you the complete guide to eCommerce, from how to improve your online checkout experience to the best platforms for online stores.

Is retail finance an effortless feature of the customer journey?

Even with the popularity and advancement of online shopping, there is still plenty that eCommerce stores can do to improve the customer experience. For instance, offering a more fluid checkout experience for finance and making the finance application a seamless part of the journey when a customer buys a product helps simplify the process.

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Why improving your online checkout experience should be your #1 priority

Cart abandonment is a genuine problem for merchants, with around 70% of shoppers dropping off at the checkout stage. By improving the checkout experience and offering flexible finance options, online stores can increase the number of purchase completions and increase revenue in the process. Other ways to improve the checkout experience include using auto-fill forms, offering mobile payments and optimising the checkout with immediate purchase options.

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Why mobile experiences are so important for online stores

Smartphones are now integral to the shopping experience, and online stores must keep pace by offering innovative ways for shoppers to buy items with their mobile devices. eCommerce sales went from 52% in 2016 to 72% in 2021, further underlining the importance of mobile devices. Offering excellent mobile experiences can also help increase your customer base as some customers solely use this channel. Websites configured for mobile also perform better on Google and increase your chance of appearing in search engine results. Lastly, research shows that mobile-optimised websites drive 30% more conversions.

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Ten convincing stats that show the power of Magento

Magento is a powerful eCommerce platform built on open-source technology designed to make life easier for merchants. The stats back up its importance, from Adobe buying the software for £1.6bn to Magneto currently powering 1.2% of the entire internet's 1.1bn sites. If you need further convincing, just look at some of the brands using Magento: clients include the Ford Motor Company, Tommy Hilfiger, HP and Coca-Cola. Indeed, it accounts for more than 20% of the top 1,000 e-retailers in the US and Canada.

Find out more Magento stats

Shopify statistics: 10 facts and figures that will seriously impress you

Magento isn’t the only game in town. Shopify is another excellent option merchants can use to power their eCommerce store, thanks to its flexibility. Since launching in 2006, more than 44 million customers have shopped with an online store using Shopify to sell its products and services. In the UK, more than 65,000 stores use Shopify, including Tesla, Gymshark and Redbull. On average, members of Shopify Plus see average year-on-year growth of 126%.

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The power of WooCommerce defined by these 10 stats

WooCommerce lets merchants with a WordPress website sell their products and services online. It's one of the more popular eCommerce platforms, and these stats prove why it's often the platform of choice for online stores. More than five million websites use WooCommerce, which equates to 6.2% of the top one million eCommerce websites. It has been downloaded an impressive 161 million times and powers over 90% 3 of all WordPress eCommerce websites. In the UK, 12,000 businesses use WooCommerce to sell their products and services.

Find out more about the power of WooCommerce

What are the most popular eCommerce platforms?

Merchants have plenty of choices when it comes to choosing an eCommerce platform to power their online store. Shopify, Magento and WooCommerce are three favourites, but they aren't the only ones available. Others include BigCommerce, Wix, Salesforce commerce cloud, Shopwired, Squarespace and PrestaShop. No matter your business needs, there's likely to be an option available.

Find out more about the most popular eCommerce platforms

How to choose the best platform for your online retail business

With so many platforms capable of powering your online retail business, it's important that you make the right choice. After all, your chosen platform will act as the foundation for the store. Consider factors like using a platform with excellent security features, scalability, the ability to use flexible payment methods, SEO friendliness and overall cost. It's also worth considering how well it works across devices and whether or not it offers analytics so you can track performance.

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How can your online electronics store communicate trust at checkout?

Electronics are some of the popular items available, but they're also costly. Consumers can pay several thousand pounds for the latest TV or computer, so they need to feel confident about where they spend their money. As an online electronic store, you must build shoppers' trust at the checkout stage by:

  • Offering an excellent user experience
  • Showing your SSL certificate
  • Providing reliable customer service with fast response times
  • Giving customers options for how they pay for your items.

These actions will help customers feel more confident about buying from your electronic store.

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How to improve the online customer experience for your outdoor living eCommerce store

Experience is everything, especially for eCommerce stores where face-to-face interactions don't typically occur. For an outdoor furniture store, customer experience is vital, considering many customers like buying these types of items in person. However, you can get them flocking to your outdoor store online by offering more ways to pay, so they have flexibility when checking out. Also, think about the navigation on your website and ensure it's easy for shoppers to navigate pages and view items. And remember to optimise your online store for mobile shopping, allowing shoppers to use different devices to buy your outdoor furniture.

Find out more about improving the online customer experience for your outdoor living eCommerce store


You can set your eCommerce store up for success by providing customers with an excellent shopping experience. From offering flexible payments at checkout to implementing the right platform to power your store, you can ride the eCommerce wave and ensure your business is best positioned to take advantage of digital shoppers looking to buy their products and services online.

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