Is Poor Usability Killing E-Commerce?

Did poor usability kill e-commerce? No. First off, despite the closure or dramatic downscaling of many sites now that the dot-com bubble has burst, e-commerce is not dead. Second, sites have gone under because expenses were greater than revenues, and usability mainly impacts the second of these parameters. If Users Can’t Buy, You Don’t Make

Helping Users Find Physical Locations

The Internet may be virtual, but customers live in physical space and often need to visit companies in the real world. Given this, geography determines business success in a very simple way: Customers can either identify and find your location or they cannot. Websites play a major role in helping customers find their way to

Profit Maximization vs. User Loyalty

The classic example used in most presentations about differential pricing is to monitor a user as he or she is moving through a site. If they just keep looking instead of putting something into the shopping cart, then the user is considered unlikely to buy at the current prices and is offered a discount. This strategy probably works, but only until it becomes common knowledge. Then all users will start clicking on lots of random products until they see the prices drop. Another common example that is very easy to implement involves giving lower prices to users who enter the site from a shopbot

Web Research: Believe the Data

I recently asked the marketing director for a major e-commerce site why they didn’t have an affiliate program, even though this way of encouraging inbound links is known to be one of the best marketing methods on the Internet (the top scorer in the Forrester study). The answer was basically that the software effort to develop an affiliates program was too burdensome. Many others probably have similar reactions, which could explain why the best marketing method is the least used. This is a major opportunity for somebody to develop an utterly simple way for websites to set up affiliates

Web Research: Believe the Data
Why People Shop on the Web

A recent study of users who have bought products on the Web has three important findings with implications for Web design: Convenience and ease of use are the main reasons people buy at websites Shoppers only buy 5% of the time they visit e-commerce sites: facilitate product research, cross-shopping, and other non-buying tasks that account


E-commerce | Top 10 Web Design Mistakes of 2002