Table of Contents
First impressions matter.
They matter so much so, in fact, that brands that redesign their site regularly report a 20-300% increase in revenue within 3-6 months after launch.
The industry average for year-over-year revenue growth is less than 25%. You hit even the bottom of that percentile and you’re already well on your way to being one of the fastest growing brands online.
Brands that redesign their site regularly report a 20-300% increase in revenue within 3-6 months after launch.
Now, one of the biggest aspects of — and reasons for — a redesign doesn’t actually have much to do with the design itself.
Yes, first impressions matter, but on the web, we employ our senses far beyond that of sight. Sight mingles with touch when it comes to online design.
- Does a button do something when I click it?
- Am I going to where I thought I would be sent when I clicked it?
- How fast do I get sent there?
- Is this new page equally as appealing as the last?
And any online consumer wants to get the answers to those questions above in 2 seconds or less.
Sight and touch: they make up online design and user experience. They also determine if the traffic landing on your site will convert –– which in turn decides if you will make any money at all.
So, how do you design a site that is both beautiful and functional? Well, that’s what this guide is for.
We’ve found 162 of the best ecommerce web designs that convert.
The “that convert” piece is important, because good design alone isn’t enough. Your site must be both attractive and easy to navigate, clearly explain your product, have a short purchase funnel and so much more.
Best Ecommerce Site Design of 2018
In this guide, you’ll find the best of the best of site design for 2018, giving you 27 examples of high-converting, well designed sites.
Then, we’ll dive into the best of the best by industry, giving you explanation as to why each industry has different design and UX requirements.
After all, you don’t shop for baby clothes and auto parts in the same way –– and you’ll clearly see how the best designed brands out there account for those differences online.
So, let’s dive in. Here are the best ecommerce site designs of 2017.
Want to see the best ecommerce site designs of 2016? You can toggle over to see 2016’s winners right here.
Want to see the best ecommerce site designs of 2016?
You can toggle over to see 2016’s winners right here.
1. Best Overall Design: Hyphen
As told to BigCommerce by Shaun Pennington, Vice President at Hyphen.
Just like our Hyphen mattress, we wanted to create a design that was unique, appealing and functional. We feel the design is a true reflection of what Hyphen stands for and that it appeals to our core audience. We’re extremely happy with it and it is absolutely a large contributor to our success.
2. Best Homepage Design: Native Union
As told to BigCommerce by Arthur Maitre, Ecommerce Manager at Native Union.
Our website is the “window” to the Native Union Brand. Often times, the first touch point a customer will have is to see our products on shelves in retail locations. Although our products tell a story, being able to create an exploration experience on our website allows users to discover our brand values and product lines in a much more controlled and aesthetically pleasing way.
We worked with Groove for the custom design, which was 100% led by Native Union.
We launched our BigCommerce re-designed website in August 2015. Our average conversion rate decreased by 15%, but this was expected given a sizable 67% traffic improvement. It still led to 41% more orders with +8% AOV!
In total, since the redesign, traffic has increased by 67%, orders have increased by 41%, AOV increased by 8%, and page download speed decreased by 19%.
3. Best Category or Product Page: Soundwall
As told to BigCommerce by Adam Goodman, President, Soundwall Inc.
Pavan Bapu, our head of marketing, had wonderful insight around this redesign and put a focus on being as literal as possible about the Soundwall product and its features. “Stream Music from a Work of Art” was the primary message. From there, we expanded on key features paired with simple illustrations. We wanted site visitors to truly understand the product prior to guiding them toward the art selection and buy page.
Since we relaunched, average time spent on site has increased by over 200%. Average pages per session went from 1.25 to 2.5. We’ve seen a 60% increase in engagement from home to shop page with a 4x increase in average time on site and 50% reduction in bounce rate.
Bottom line, we saw that site visitors were moving through the site with ease. They were navigating the site to learn more about Soundwall.
That said, the real conversion came from the subsequent inquiries not by individual consumers, but by those in commercial verticals. The big win stemming from this redesign was the ground swell of interest from the hospitality space that led one of the largest distributors of goods to the hotel industry globally to pick Soundwall up as the newest featured luxury product in their line.
4. Best Customer Experience: Human Solution
As told to BigCommerce by Greg Venditto, Human Solution.
Our inspiration came from our standing desk customers. We know they love to build custom desks, select options, add accessories, and more, and we wanted to give them an online experience that would let them quickly and easily build the desk they’ve always wanted.
As a customer begins to build their desk, they’ll notice that the desk image changes with each selection. Our customers are able to choose their desk style, size, color, and desktop material – watching their desk come together on screen. Accessories are also important, and we wanted to showcase each of them. Customers can see their desk setup – complete with their LED task light, standing mat, storage options, keyboard trays, monitor arms, and more – before they ever order it.
It’s all showcased on the desk, giving customers an idea of how it will look before purchasing. We also took the “build” concept to our ergonomic chairs, and customers can compare options and colors before they place their order. We didn’t just want customers to see our UPLIFT Desk products, we wanted them to interact with them on our site firsthand.
Our new site is a full redesign, and since the launch, we’ve seen a 21% increase in our conversion rate. Our mobile site has seen even larger gains. This led us to a revenue growth opportunity, where we were previously using mobile primarily to educate our potential customers about the benefits of an ergonomic lifestyle.
5. People’s Choice Award: KidsChoo
As told to BigCommerce by Mark Withers, KidsChoo.
This store is simple and elegant, utilizing a variety of color and embracing the flexibility of the BigCommerce technology design platform. The store has been designed with scale in mind, with further categorization to be added to focus on natural foods resulting in healthy kids.
Best Ecommerce Site Design Runners Up
As told to BigCommerce by Jarod Pulo, Bulk Nutrients.
Bulk Nutrients is an Aussie owned and operated online supplement store. We pride ourselves on supplying pure supplements at very affordable prices to all Australians.
At Bulk, we’re very customer driven and do all we can to involve our fans in what we do, because to us they’re integral to who we are!
This played a major role in our website design, as it’s the main contact point where we meet our customers. We’ve created a bright, engaging and user friendly space which truly puts our customers first.
It all comes down to two key aspects, the bright, engaging design and our focus on the customer.
Our website looks striking. The clean, crisp colors and bold CTAs have all been customized to represent our brand values.
To make browsing an extensive range of products, we created an easy to use drop down menu. This lessens a customer’s potential choice paralysis and makes navigation easy.
At Bulk Nutrients, we want to match the right product with the right customer. So, we’ve built our website to achieve this goal.
Browsing is a breeze via the search bar or hovering over the category menus. If it all seems too much, customers can use our “Shop by Goal” section, and we can help them find their ideal supplement in just a few clicks.
The individual product descriptions are a highlight of our website. Each product has its own description, full ingredient breakdown and reviews from customers up the right-hand panel.
Our proteins, for example, each have quick facts so each customer can visually see the nutrient breakdown of the product and just below is a link that can take them to all recipes that the product can be used in!
Bulk Nutrients’ Bigcommerce website has is a carefully balanced, innovative and captivating website design in which usability by our customers is paramount.
As told to BigCommerce by Sam Thomas, Diamond Exchange.
Our original site was run on Magento. We engaged Randem Digital Consultancy to redefine our online go to market.
On Magento, our mobile conversion was 0% of our revenue and we had lots of challenges with our diamonds (and there are over 100, 000 diamonds that are uploaded daily) feeding into our system correctly.
Today, our mobile conversion has hit 50% of our monthly income for the first time in 8 years! And our online revenue has been increased by 20% every month.
SUCCESS Partners migrated 11 sites from Magento to BigCommerce and saved $1,000,000. Learn how they did it.
As told to BigCommerce by Jen Knobel, Everything Orgo.
Our site was completely redesigned with a sleek and modern look. We have improved the check out process and added the option of pre-ordering our new collections.
As told to BigCommerce by Troy Hawkins, 101 Design.
The website has not only had a visual enhancement which has led to an increased conversion rate of 32%, but also increased speed and stability using the BigCommerce platform.
The previous website was an obsolete custom shopping cart which was full of bugs resulting in major browser issues, and major customer checkout issues. The bulk product edit option has been a huge time saver for the clients as well, due to fresh produce pricing constantly changing. All in all a very successful website design not only for the customers but also the business owners.
As told to BigCommerce by Kevin Wanner, KMP Accessories.
My store has come a long way over the past ten years. Thanks to the help of PSD Center, I finally have the look and feel I have been searching for with a modern design that is very competitive.
As told to BigCommerce by Eamon Rodeck, Little Tree Shoes.
We think that the strength of the landing pages (Home page, Womens, Men) as well as Product Pages with more than 1 image make this site stand out. The navigation, and overall style is clean and focused on usability at all screen sizes.
As told to BigCommerce by Steven Webb, MotoXart.
We have spent a lot of time developing the store from its original beginnings, making good use of the available, out-of-the-box tools in BigCommerce such as product options and custom fields.
Our website is a redesign of the Skate and Surf theme. We chose this theme as a starting point because it allowed us to resize our product images and allow us to have large thumbnails which our customers find very important when casually browsing.
Since we re-designed the website ,we find that customers are more attracted to the site and browse longer, visiting more items which has led to a 25% increase in sales over a 12 month period.
10. My Magic Mud
As told to BigCommerce by Justin Armon, Creative Director at My Magic Mud.
We’ve made our store extremely fast, and we’re the top ranking site in our category.
We started as a small BigCommerce store, and now our products are in over 5,000 locations worldwide.
As told to BigCommerce by Brandon Chatham, NatoMounts.
We designed our website to tackle the growing mobile market, and allow visitors to checkout in less than a minute.
We specifically used the new one-page checkout provided by BigCommerce and modified the cart page design to accomplish this goal.
Now, our website experiences upward of 6% conversion and even higher, with more than 70% of our traffic coming from mobile.
12. Nektar De Stagni
As told to BigCommerce by Nektar De Stagni, Nektar De Stagni.
We’ve been a long time BigCommerce customer, and our designs have been recognized by The New York Times and The Wall Street Journal among others. Currently, our products are featured at Nordstrom and Bergdorf Goodman.
Our online store features high caliber product photography by leading stylists. The custom store design features a clever masonry layout that allows different content to easily adapt to each page by simply changing the width of the image, making for low bounce rates and high conversion.
As told to BigCommerce by Emmanuel Chekwas Nwokocha, Onychek.
ONYCHEK.com, an ecommerce store for luxury fashion made in Africa, has a very simple design that makes potential customers focus on the product.
We also lay emphasis on product photography and overall feel of the website. We are targeting sophisticated consumers and with our designs and can say that customers receive it well.
We send NPS surveys to all of our customers, and so far we have had NPS score of 10 and 0 returns.This is because with the minimal design, we describe our products well enough that customers know exactly what they are getting.
Our conversion rate this April increased by 138.46% compared to March. We put UI and UX in the forefront of our design idea to make it really easy to shop. Here is an exact quote we received:
“I love your site, it’s simple and focuses mainly on your products.”
This confirms that we think of the customer as build a really easy UX.
As told to BigCommerce by Scott Szeglowski, Carolina Panthers Shop.
Our mobile conversions are through the roof. We earned our ROI back in days on BigCommerce!
15. Wabi Cycles
As told to BigCommerce by Curtis Kline, CEO at Wabi Cycles.
Wabi Cycles developed a completely custom BigCommerce site reflecting a modern take on a classic bicycle. We used engineering drawings as a background to help push our core brand ethos: quality above all else.
As told to BigCommerce by Chris Gerbig, Founder at Pink Lily.
We have customers tell us daily how beautiful our website is!
We started out of our garage 3 years ago and now we have 25,000 customers per day. They are coming to PinkLily.com because the website is beautifully designed and our products complement the look of the website.
We also feature images of our customers wearing our clothing on the front page of the website, which also adds to the aesthetic. You can see colorful products, beautiful customers, and wonderful design elements all at PinkLily.com.
As told to BigCommerce by Jeff Steitz, Founder and CEO at Serengetee.
We have continued to improve conversion through A/B testing and design upgrades. Last year, conversion was 4.2%; this year, we are at 4.6%. The average conversion rate in our industry is somewhere in the 2-3% ballpark. This has given us an edge against other clothing brands.
19. Solo Stove
As told to BigCommerce by Jeff Jan, Solo Stove.
We have designed a fully custom site that is fully responsive. Our site has a killer design that built with the customer and brand in mind.
21. Style Rocks
As told to BigCommerce by Pascale Helyar-Moray, Founder and CEO at Style Rocks.
StyleRocks was one of the first to move to the new BigCommerce Stencil themes when they were introduced. Arcade Light was chosen for its ability to quickly and easily show our fine custom jewelery that we offer.
In addition to showcasing the product beautifully in a suitably premium environment, Arcade Light also translated well into mobile and tablet environments. The theme also allowed for a bigger showcase of the beautiful product photography we have, with the carousels being wider than ever.
Customer reviews, always very important when it comes to decision making, were a strong feature of the theme too.
We customized many parts of the theme, including the home page, cart and checkout, to ensure our USP was being easily and correctly communicated.
Since implementation of the new theme (in November 2016), we have seen our conversion rate go from 0.39% to 0.57% for the period 1 Jan – 31 March, 2016 compared to 2017. We have also seen the average order value increase from $730 to over $800.
In short, the implementation of the Stencil theme on www.StyleRocks.com has led to improved business performance.
As told to BigCommerce by Krissy Sexton, The Hair Bow Company.
Our site was designed to be a boutique shopping experience online.
With mobile friendly use for the customer in mind, we built the site to work well across all platforms, to be visually appealing, and also to be a smooth shopping experience.
We have continually worked with our designers to improve the unique customer experience by offering things such as custom one-page checkouts, estimated calculated delivery dates, as well as similar interest product upsells when customers add items to their cart.
We work with some amazing photographers to provide visually appealing images as well.
16 Experts on Ecommerce Site Design
Andy Sowards, Founder + CEO, AndySowards.com
It may sound cliche at this point, but the best approach is to keep it simple. Minimal interface design and streamlined calls to action are what make conversion happen.
In this day and age especially, people are strapped for time and mental real estate. Make it clear and simple for people to get the message you are trying to get across.
What are you selling? It should be apparent, and tantalizing, and most of all – EASY for them to say “YES” when it comes to your product or service.
Stick to the bare essentials and design accordingly with less. It sounds simple but striking the perfect balance between call to action, design, and product details can be quite difficult – but achievable.
Yates Jarvis, Managing Director, Client Solutions & Strategy, eHouse Studio
Conversion is really about satisfaction. Assuming usability is accounted for in your storefront, the key is to triple check with customers that your value prop is as relevant today as it was yesterday, and then use design and content to spotlight the celebration of that story.
Zach Bluett, Director of Design & Development, Intuit Solutions
Ecommerce design is not ‘one-size-fits-all’. Create a user experience that focuses on your specific product dffering by asking yourself, “What information does my customer need in order to make a purchase, and at what step in the process?”
Kevin Richards, Founder & CEO, Ventura Web Design
Successful store owners create long term growth and success by creating a unique buying experience that cannot be replicated. Customizing your store creates a barrier to entry that protects you from your competitors. Store owners that invest in their own webstore today will own the future of ecommerce.
Joe Chilson, Head Writer + Account Manager, 1 Digital Agency
Great user experience should always come first –– before an old logo, or a well-worn font, before any gimmick, or design trend of the week. The first focus of your design should be to communicate with your customer as clearly and simply as possible.
Stav Sarandiev, Chief Growth Officer, Digitawise
My favorite expression is, “We are in the business of rain making. Are you thirsty?”
In my opinion it describes everything.
Be a smart ass, be creative, think out of the box, but make it simple, make it understandable for the wider audience.
The UX is the most important factor. It is a complex, but the design comes first. Then everything follows. The customer buys with his eyes. Happy customer, happy business owner. At the end of the day, only this matters.
Dane Downer, President, Brand Labs
First, embrace flat design and use Google’s Material Design philosophy as your guide. It’s a solid framework for designing a great ecommerce site experience.
Second, know that design is an evolutionary and iterative process that never truly ends. There is always room for improvement.
Jeff Dyksen, CEO, Diztinct
Be distinct: find ways to be memorable and separate your business from your competition through design, unique selling proposition, branding, and features. If you don’t differentiate yourself from others you’ll be competing solely on the price of your products, which tends to be a race to the bottom where no one wins.
Corey Susin, Creative Director, Designer at DIGITLHAUS
Increase conversions with what’s pleasing to the eye.
In today’s market, consumers have the attention span of a goldfish, 8 seconds, which means we need to attract and engage the audience as soon as the are landed on your storefront.
We no longer buy according to quality, size or descriptions, we simply buy what looks good.
The number #1 piece of design advice we give our clients is to showcase beautiful and luxurious photography. This includes product, lifestyle and general stock photos. You could take apple.com for example, take away all the product and lifestyle photos, and what do you have? You have a really great UI with a poor visual appearance.
When consumers can relate to a high quality visual of a product being used, or a scenario shot, the chances of them pursuing further into purchasing is promising.
We recommend to showcase beautiful, luxurious photography through home page elements, this can include marketing banners (hero), interactive tile hover-overs, social feeds or product and category call outs.
If you lose your buyer on the homepage within that 8 seconds, you can guarantee that they will be purchasing elsewhere.
James Brown, Senior Digital Solutions Manager, RANDEM
Steer clear of blindly implementing ecommerce received wisdom, and constantly seek first-hand, verifiable and repeatable customer data and feedback to fuel your decisions around customer experience and design.
Brandon Kirkland, CEO, epicShops
Think Conversion Rate Optimization first when designing a website.
It’s not want you want or what the business owner wants to see in a design. In fact, 99% of the time, you and the business owner aren’t even the target market, so those opinions are moot and you’re left lying to yourself. The answer to great design that converts is to create what the customer wants.
My advice is to use data to understand the customer and design around that, with CRO in mind.
Hannah Griffin, Designer, Groove
Successful ecommerce design always comes back to differentiating your brand’s lifestyle. Without a brick and mortar storefront, every pixel of your site should reflect your personality. Invest in owned creative assets, follow a dedicated style guide and leverage product and lifestyle imagery for a consistent and engaging user journey.
Jared Alexander, Graphic Designer, NewLeaf Innovations Inc.
My #1 piece of design advice for increasing conversions for online businesses, is getting the customer to the product page in the least amount of time and clicks possible. This can be achieved by having clear and concise categories on your homepage with minimal text.
Catherine Erath, Graphic Designer, NewLeaf Innovations Inc.
A well designed website will lead to higher conversions because it demonstrates to your customers that you have high quality products or that you are a knowledgeable leader in your industry through showing not telling.
Paul Rogers, Ecommerce Consultant
I think that the functional aspects of eCommerce design / UX is something that is often compromised – with core functionality being hidden away or not as prominent as it should be. The search box is a good example of this, as are things like related product recommendation blocks and filters, particularly on very design-orientated sites (such as luxury or fashion stores).
Search in particular would generally drive better results for a merchant than a category-led user journey, however lots of retailers choose to hide it behind a small icon.
I would say that the same applies for layered navigation more recently as well – with lots of modern-day fashion stores hiding it by default now.
This would be my general advice in this area – basically just not to overlook the aspects of the store that drive the most value from a customer experience / user journey perspective.
JT Hamman, Senior Designer, EYStudios
Don’t make your customers think! In a sea of hungry competition, it is vital customers are presented with clear navigation, well-merchandised products and an easy flow to checkout. These factors add up to create an intuitive, visual shopping experience that leads to higher conversions and lower cart abandonment. Additionally, customers will remember a positive experience and are more likely to return in the future.
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