Bad Widgets, Good Widgets, and Your Ecommerce Store

There are a lot of things to think about when building an ecommerce website. One aspect of your website is the widgets you would like to include.

A widget is a small block that performs a specific function on a website. Often you will see widgets in sidebars or in the website’s footer. Widgets provide an easy way to give a website some structure, content, and function.

You’ve probably seen widgets for email sign ups, recent blog posts, best-selling products, or social media plugs. But what widgets should you have in your own ecommerce store?

If you’re learning how to build an ecommerce website, you’ll need to decide what widgets you want to include. Some widgets are fun and useful, but others are just kind of stupid. Here are a few good and bad widget ideas for you to consider:

Bad Widgets

Social Media

Don’t be mistaken, having links to your social media profiles on your website is a great idea. However, there’s a right way and a wrong way to go about it.

Some websites have big, clunky social media widgets that are created by Facebook or Twitter. You’ve probably seen the boxes that display the latest posts or the follower count.

However, your potential customers don’t really need to see this information in a widget on your website. It’s clunky, unnecessary, and distracting. Just include social media icons in a less obnoxious location that link to your relevant profiles.

Clutter

The general rule of thumb is to keep your widget areas relatively clean. That means leaving room for white space, and only including widgets that have a clean aesthetic.

Simple text, high-quality images, or other well-designed elements make much better widgets than clunky alternatives. Don’t waste your time cluttering up your website. Clutter will only overwhelm your customers and drive down conversions.

If you have a lot of things you’d like to include, consider breaking that content out into pages your website visitors can view for more information.

Purposeless

Every widget on your website should have a clear reason for being there. Don’t place widgets on your website just for the sake of it. Each widget should enhance the experience of the user and guide them to completing a goal, such as filling out a form or purchasing a product.

Good Widgets

Email Sign Ups

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If there’s one thing you should display on your ecommerce website (besides your products) it’s your email sign-up form. Many ecommerce entrepreneurs choose to use pop-ups, but they often display too early for a potential customer to share their email address.

Having an email sign-up form in the sidebar or footer at all times ensures your visitors will always have an opportunity to join your email list. Don’t forget to include a strong call to action and an incentive to share their email address. A discount or other enticing offer should do the trick!

Product Reviews

Product reviews often display right on the product page, but there are other widgets than can display random reviews wherever you’d like on your website. Product reviews are a great way to build trust with prospective buyers. Often customers will trust reviews from fellow customers more than the company itself.

Be sure to give your customers a chance to rave about how much they love your products!

Product Categories

Your customer will need a clear way to navigate your website and all your product offerings. Display your main product categories so your customer can browse and find exactly what they’re looking for. But don’t display too many categories or sub-categories, as that will overwhelm your website visitor.

Remember, the key with website widgets is to focus on your customer’s experience and the direction you want to lead them. Keep that in mind and you can’t go wrong!

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