Online Marketplace UI/UX: Striking Back at the Amazon Threat

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Amazon is coming at you on your own turf.


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The Amazon juggernaut is disrupting industries across board with a tsunami-like business model that engulfs entire industries at a time. It has successfully swallowed industries like publishing, retail, logistics, entertainment, banks, real estate and cloud computing.

In a 2017 Forrester Research report reveals that 95% of all consumers have already used a marketplace and more than 50% of buyers have revealed that it has changed the way they shop. In the B2B space, Amazon has acquired over a million customers in the US with 85000 sellers.

The solution is clear as day. Build your own online marketplace. By standing strong on your turf and creating your own marketplace, you become an industry leader who can help fend off incursions from Amazon and other ecommerce marauders who consume traditional markets.

Owning your own marketplace makes you agile. You can quickly move in on new areas to take advantage of trends and seasonal opportunities. With a marketplace, you can cross sell and upsell, creating new customer markets and profitable product categories.

Of course, the success of your marketplaces is built around 3 cornerstones:

-Quality of your products, services and solutions
-Quality of the content that you offer your customers
-Quality of design on your marketplace through which the sales are delivered

UI/UX is a Key Part of providing the “Amazon-like Experience”

Let’s begin with the difference between UI (user interface) and UX (user experience). According to Harshita Arora: ‘UI is how things look, UX is how things work. UX is a process, while UI is a deliverable.’ User interface is, in essence, the series of screens, pages, and visual elements that you use to interact with a device. User experience is the internal experience that your customers and sellers have, on your marketplace.

When it comes UI, keep in mind that your marketplace should incorporate the following features into its working: ambient branding, seamless design, ease-of-use, user data security and add user contributed experience.

Visual Hierarchy is a marketplace where designers can buy and sell their products. According to Visual Hierarchy, the best practices for UI design involve the three basic elements of visible language–Communication, Economization and Organization: ‘Communication relies on matching the presentation of the interface to the capability of its intended users. Economization is about making the UI design perform with the minimum number of cues. Organization means that the design will provide users with a clear structure that is consistent with its basic concept.’

According to user experience website UX Planet, the key goal of UX is user retention through a positive user experience. To accomplish this, your marketplace has to focus on the four key aspects of UX:

-Utility lies in the nature of the product: it helps users to choose and buy things and services they need.

-Usability has to make the customer journey clear and easy, without unnecessary clicks, time lost on loading overloaded pages or inconvenient menu, frustration of not getting feedback from the system etc.

-Accessibility has to bring up design which can be used by different categories of users, for example people with disabilities (dyslexic, color-blind etc.) or low level of tech literacy.

-Desirability means that the app will get the look and feel which will make the experience enjoyable and users will wish to get back again.

As marketplaces attract millions of customers worldwide, it has become a challenge for retailers to deliver seamless users experiences around the clock. Even if you adopt the simplest platform in a multi-device world, there will be challenges. The team at Think360 have listed the 20 common UX mistakes in ecommerce websites. The

In Closing

The last word on UI/UX goes to Don Norman, the inventor of the phrase User Experience observes: ‘The first requirement for an exemplary user experience is to meet the exact needs of the customer, without fuss or bother. Next comes simplicity and elegance that produce products that are a joy to own, a joy to use.’

Your customers today expect an Amazon-like experience, so keeping the user experience fresh and including modern user contributed features keep up with expectations. In our eBook, Maximizing your Oracle Commerce Investment, we outline the following steps to enhance your user experience: Add Reassurance Copy, Build Trust, Create a Privacy Policy, Add an SSL certificate, Offer Free Shipping Ensure User Accessibility, Offer Personalized Content and Focus on Metrics.

Marketplaces are changing the world by connecting buyers and sellers at a global scale. Once you’ve created a great UI/UX experience and a vibrant ecosystem, you go beyond the traditional retail model to create a top notch customer experience and responsiveness.  And that is it: the secret to beating Amazon on their own turf. Build your own marketplace and capitalize on the very model that makes them a threat in the first place.

McFadyen’s marketplace solution can help you quickly deploy a robust marketplace with an increased catalog, better customer insights, and easy drop-shipping /fulfilment by third parties. If you would like to learn more about McFadyen’s marketplace solution, write to us at engage@mcfadyen.com or connect with us on Twitter @McFadyenDigital

Sources

https://www.usertesting.com/blog/2016/04/27/ui-vs-ux/

https://visualhierarchy.co/blog/user-interface-design-best-practices/

https://www.forbes.com/sites/ciocentral/2013/02/07/5-tips-for-building-a-two-sided-online-marketplace/#3b8927fd2d6e

https://medium.freecodecamp.org/whats-the-difference-between-ux-and-ui-design-2ca8d107de14

https://uxplanet.org/ux-design-for-e-commerce-principles-and-strategies-9df7d81e59d8

https://think360studio.com/20-common-ux-mistakes-in-ecommerce-websites/

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