The Dot Bombs of the 1990s created skepticism of the
Internet and it’s actually potential as a medium for massive business.
The gold diggers rush left people unprepared, services unfulfilled and
inadequate and resulted in a catastrophe that tarnished E-commerce for
quite a while. E-commerce laid low for a while and built strength in
its Business to Business format, is emerging into e-tailing with more
Like the cell phones, E-commerce has some developing
to do, but as the bandwidth on home computers is getting higher and
computer and Internet access is getting faster, it is getting easier.
But like any Web site, E-commerce sites are fighting
for consumer attention.
Here are some E-commerce usability tips from a study
done in February 1999 by the Shelley Taylor Association (Note-These
are the numbers as of 1999, but I think the customer questions and concerns
are still valid):
Where am I?
This is the equivalent to a mall’s “you
are here” map. This puts the user’s current in context with
the rest of the Web site.
Help me please
Pre-sale help was only present in 76 percent of E-commerce
How many did I order?
Shopping cart content on every page was only on two
How good is the product?
Third-party reviews that offered comparisons were only
available on four sites.
Is it available?
30 percent of sites offered product availability information.
How do I buy it?
This is key to closing a sale and only 68 percent of
Web sites included this.
Top 3 Reasons for Abandoning a Web site:
1. Couldn’t find the item
2. Disorientation or confusion
3. Pages downloaded too slowly
Factors International, First