Kitchen Economy

Since 1978, Kitchen Economy has been Cardiff’s local Euronics provider of high-quality home appliances. They work closely with some of the biggest names in white goods including Beko, Zanussi, Cannon, Belling and Hotpoint. Alongside selling a wide variety of these great products, they also have a dedicated spares department to help fix any issues you may have with your appliances!


They work to provide the best possible service to Cardiff and the surrounding area and you can find them situated in their long-standing appliance store in Roath. As they aim to cater to each and every one of their customers, Kitchen Economy opted to go for a full redesign of their website to make it as user-friendly as possible.
They found their old website had become out-dated and came to us to achieve a more modern look for their brand. Alongside a fresh new look, they also wanted their website to become fully responsive across all devices.

What did we do?

Our design team worked to provide a modernised version of their existing functional e-commerce website. The redesign included making the website more visually appealing, with large and high-quality images, alongside clear call to action buttons. We also integrated the Kitchen Economy blog onto the category pages to provide new and useful information while customers browsed the website.

Looking to compete with the likes of AO and Currys with their modernised new design, we worked to provide a responsive, secure and attractive new website. The Kitchen Economy website is now served entirely over HTTPS, meaning that all information users send via the website is encrypted and secure.

We are very proud of the new website and if you’re in need of any new electrical appliances, we’d love if you checked it out today!

Here’s what they had to say about their new website:

Kitchen Economy Tweet

Are you also looking for a fully responsive, secure and SEO friendly website? If so, get in touch with us today for a free quote

Beer Pong Shop Website
 
Invented in America sometime in the mid-20th century, beer pong is a drinking game that has achieved international popularity in recent years - it's become a staple fixture of student house parties, and it's not hard to see why! While avid players have come up with countless different variants, the basic rules of beer pong are very simple and incredibly easy to pick up: all you have to do is throw a ping-pong ball at your opponent's formation of cups, and if the ball goes in, they have to drink that cup's contents (usually beer). Empty cups are removed from the game, and play continues until one player runs out of cups.
 
This deceptively straightforward premise has spawned a whole industry: you can now compete in beer pong tournaments, hang out with your friend at beer pong bars, and purchase all kinds of beer pong products and accessories to help you play. All of which brings us to Designer Websites' latest project: www.beer-pong.co.uk, an ecommerce website dedicated entirely to beer pong!
 
The Beer Pong UK website has a fun, modern design and a layout that's as simple as the game itself. From one page, beer pong fans can browse beer pong sets, brush up on the rules, and download handy printables (including a tournament bracket and a 'how to play' guide). The website also has a 'Drinking Game Ideas' blog in case you need any inspiration for your next big party!
 
We're very pleased with the finished version of this new website, and its responsive design means that you can buy your beer pong gear via smartphone or tablet just as easily as you can on your PC. Visit the Beer Pong UK site now to take a look at our latest work, or contact Designer Websites if you need a quote for your own online project.
 

Really Wild Bird Food are family-run business based in Hampshire, who specialise in growing, harvesting and supplying seeds and feed mixes for garden birds. Since their business was first set up in the early nineties, their selection of products has expanded rapidly, which means that their website is now a one-stop shop for a variety of garden bird and wildlife products, including:

  • Suet products, peanuts and live/dried mealworms 
  • Bird feeders, tables and stations
  • Feeder cleaning and hygiene products 
  • Bird baths and nesting boxes 
  • Food, habitats and accessories for attracting other garden wildlife 
The farm and business is headed by husband and wife team Richard and Lesley, who came to us with a vision of a new, user-friendly ecommerce website, which retained their approachable, hands-on image. In addition, they also wanted the ability to easily manage their product listings and company blog, which was especially important for a couple with such a long to-do list!
 
We are now happy to say that the website has been completely revamped, to include an eye-catching, user-friendly design, highly optimised SEO and copy, and a functional content management system that's easy to use. In addition to these many benefits, the site is now fully responsive, making it easy to navigate on mobile devices, and optimised to perform well in mobile search results.
 
Whether you're looking for seeds and wildlife products for the budding bird-spotter in your life, or you'd simply like to have a closer look at the new design simply click here to visit the new and improved Really Wild Bird Food site!
 
Would you like a functional, attractive and SEO friendly ecommerce site for your business? Get in touch now to request a free quotation.
How to Bring Customers Back to Your Ecommerce Website
 
Previously on this blog, we shared 5 top tips for instilling trust in first-time customers and encouraging them to buy from your ecommerce website. Today, we'd like to look at the next step: enticing those customers back to your website for a second purchase.
 
Converting one-time customers into repeat customers is arguably an even bigger challenge for ecommerce retailers than securing that key first transaction. According to Entrepreneur, only 32% of ecommerce consumers placed a second order with an online seller within a year of their first. However, it's well worth making an effort to clear that second-sale hurdle; once a customer has made two purchases from your website, there's a good chance they'll make a third...then a fourth...and so on.
 
But how can you magically transform your one-off buyers into regular customers? Below are five useful tips from the ecommerce experts and marketing specialists who work here at Designer Websites - read on to learn how to bring customers back to your site time and time again!

1. Marketing Emails

The most obvious and most popular way to bring customers back for a second purchase is simply to email them. If the customer entered their email address at the checkout (and opted in to receive correspondence from you in the future), it's definitely in your best interest to stay in touch with them, and services like MailChimp have made it easier than ever before to do this.
 
When constructing an email marketing campaign, it's important to strike a balance between silence and spam. If you don't email your past customers often enough, they may well forget all about your brand and the service you provided for them; send too many emails, however, and your customers may get annoyed and unsubscribe from your list altogether. Think carefully about how often you'd want to hear from a company like yours - once a month is usually a fairly safe starting point, although the ideal frequency will depend on the industry you're in and the actual content of each email.
 
Rather than including your entire customer base in every generic email campaign, you may get better results if you split your mailing list into segments (e.g. 'People who bought shoes', 'People who made a purchase near Christmas') and send tailored mailers to each of these segments.
 
Here are a few ideas, with specific examples given in bold:
 
Arrival of a new product that's similar to one the customer bought previously.
We know you love Adele - her new album is available now!
 
Special offer on a type of product the customer purchased previously.
25% off all perfumes and fragrances

One year on from a seasonal purchase the customer made previously.
Autumn is here again - do you need a new coat? 
 

2. Social Media

Social media platforms like Twitter and Facebook are perfect for keeping in touch with past customers and making sure you stay on their radar. Once a customer has followed your company on Twitter, for instance, all you have to do is tweet regularly and your brand - your logo, your company name, your latest news and updates - will keep appearing in their feed, reminding the customer that you exist and that your online shop is still very much open for business.
 
Of course, the tricky part is actually persuading people to follow you on Twitter (or Facebook, Instagram, etc.) in the first place. Here are a few ways to accomplish this beyond simply asking people to follow you when you send them the receipt for their order.

Be easy to find.

Display recognisable social media icons prominently on your website and in emails, and make sure that these buttons actually go to the right URL when clicked. Far too many companies put the Twitter logo in their website header but forget to actually link it to their Twitter account!

Post well and post often.

In order to make your social media page an appealing prospect to potential followers, you need to demonstrate that you're a) active, and b) interesting. You'll have a hard time attracting new followers if your last post was six weeks ago, or if every single post is just a link to a product on your website.
 
You - or your social media manager - should be aiming to post frequently, and to post a good variety of content that is nevertheless consistent with your brand and the wants and needs of your customers. It's a bit of a balancing act, for sure, but get it right and you should find that your customers are far happier to follow you online.

Make your company's brand compatible with the customer's personal brand.

Individuals have their own 'brands' just like companies do, and if a person considers their social media account to be an integral part of their personal brand, they won't follow anyone who is inconsistent with that brand. Someone who sees themselves as being glamorous and trendy might be reluctant to follow, say, a pest control company on Twitter, even if they frequently use that company's services.
 
With this in mind, here's a useful exercise. Ask yourself who your customers are and how they perceive themselves; now, ask yourself how your business fits into that perception. If your customers are serious, no-nonsense business owners, then present yourself as a serious, no-nonsense business on Twitter. If your target audience mostly consists of stay-at-home parents, then tailor your social media posts to stay-at-home parents.
 
This isn't just a question of tone (although that's certainly part of it). Think of it this way: if, every time you liked a Facebook page or followed a company on Twitter, you had to put a bumper sticker on your car saying 'I ❤ [Company Name]', which companies would you follow? Which brands fit your personality well enough that you'd be happy to endorse them to the driver behind you at all times?
 
This may sound like an odd comparison if you don't really play the social media game yourself, but a lot of people curate their 'following' list very carefully as they consider it a reflection of their own personality. Your goal is to be the sort of company they don't mind associating themselves with.
 

3. User Accounts

Allowing your customer to register an account on your website will make it a little bit easier for said customer to come back sometime in the future and place that all-important second order. If, while finalising purchase #2, Mr Jones can simply enter a username and password instead of typing in all of his personal details from scratch, this will give him a better overall experience, thus increasing the chance that he'll both complete this order and use your website again the next time he needs a present for his mum.
 
A word of caution, however, while some customers will happily create an account in order to save time in the long run, others will resent you for forcing them down this route instead of just letting them check out as quickly as possible. The best idea is to let people decide for themselves: many of the ecommerce websites we've built let people register an account if they want to, but also offer an 'Express Checkout' option for people who want to go straight to the payment screen.
 

4. Personal Notes

If you want to turn a one-time customer into a customer for life, it's crucial that you do whatever you can to endear yourself to that customer. The most important part of this is just providing a solid service, both while they're on your website and afterwards; in other words, you need to make sure that your website is easy to use and that your courier delivers the goods on time and as described.
 
Ticking those two boxes lays a good foundation for consumer loyalty, but in order to really seal the deal, you need to go the extra mile - do something that will set you apart from the competition and make sure the customer remembers you fondly. The easiest way to win hearts? Include a personal note in package you send to the customer - not a generic form letter, but something genuine that's specifically for that one person.
 
There's no need to write an essay here, nor to hunt down your customer's Facebook page so that you can include specific details about their personal life. Simply thank them for their custom in a genuine way that makes them feel like a valued part of your business. Here's an example:
 
Hi Edward,
Just a quick note to say thanks very much for using our website. Hope you enjoy the book - I read it myself when it first came out and I have to say I couldn't put it down. Fingers crossed you find it just as compelling!
 
If there's anything else we can help you with, please don't hesitate to ring the office or drop me an email. You can also find us on Twitter, so feel free to say hello if you're on there too!
 
Best regards,
 
Signature
 
Georgina R. Owen
Managing Director of Great Reads Online
 
A note like this shows the customer you care and gives them a glimpse of the real people behind the company - often a sticking point for retailers who sell exclusively through an online storefront as opposed to a bricks-and-mortar shop that's staffed by smiling faces.
 
As an added bonus, these letters also give you another place to plug your social media accounts (as in the example above) and/or offer the customer another little incentive to revisit your website soon. What sort of incentive, you ask?

5. Loyalty Discounts

Here's another version of that note from Georgina R. Owen, the fictional boss of fictional company Great Reads Online:
 
Hi Edward,
Just a quick note to say thanks very much for using our website. Hope you enjoy the book - I read it myself when it first came out and I have to say I couldn't put it down. Fingers crossed you find it just as compelling!
 
In case you fancy exploring the rest of our crime section, here's a discount code for you to use next time you're on our site. Just type this into the box on the basket page and it'll knock 15% off the total cost of your order:
 
GR8RDZ123
 
If there's anything else we can help you with, please don't hesitate to ring the office or drop me an email. You can also find us on Twitter, so feel free to say hello if you're on there too!
 
Best regards,
 
Signature
 
Georgina R. Owen
Managing Director of Great Reads Online
 

Not only does this letter endear the company to the customer and encourage him to follow the company on social media, but it also gives Edward an extra reason to go back for another purchase. Once he's finished his book and needs something new to read, he'll know that he can get his next page-turner for 15% less if he goes back to Great Reads.

 
If you need an eCommerce website that functions flawlessly and keeps customers coming back time after time, we at Designer Websites are the people to call. Click below to request a quote, or telephone 01446 339050 to discuss your requirements.
 
Ecommerce Tips - How to Earn Customer Trust
 

If you sell products online via an ecommerce website, one of the biggest challenges you'll face is convincing new users to take the plunge and buy from you for the very first time. It's common for e-shoppers (particularly those who are accustomed to huge online stores like Amazon and eBay) to be a little uncertain when using an ecommerce website that they've only just discovered; at this early stage, they probably have no idea whether or not you're able to provide a satisfactory service, and more cautious users may even worry that your online payment system isn't secure enough.

For this reason, establishing trust should be a key priority for any ecommerce website owner. If you don't do a good job of presenting yourself as a reliable and trustworthy retailer, the people who stumble upon your website may be very reluctant to actually purchase anything.

But what's the best way to earn customer trust? Here are a few quick tips for helping customers to feel confident when using your ecommerce website:

Use reviews to demonstrate your reliability.

One of the most popular ways to instil confidence in online consumers is to show them reviews from people who bought the same item(s) from the same website in the past.
 
Most ecommerce websites allow users to leave reviews, usually in the form of a star rating (one to five) and a few comments about the purchasing experience. If you want to do something a bit more in-depth, you could go further and allow users to rate different aspects of your service separately, like this:
 
In-depth review
 
However you choose to present them, populating your product pages with reviews from previous customers will really help new customers to feel less like they're venturing into the unknown.
 
Of course, the one drawback of this system is the possibility that customers might leave negative reviews, thus potentially making newcomers even more reluctant to purchase anything from your website. Fortunately, there are a few different ways to combat this problem. Some websites allow sellers to post public responses to customer reviews, meaning that anyone on the receiving end of a one-star rating has the opportunity to explain what happened and possibly redeem themselves in the eyes of future visitors. Alternatively, you might consider implementing a review moderation system that allows you to decide which reviews actually get published on your website (this is a good way to prevent people from posting abuse or lying about your company).
 
Still, if you provide a satisfactory service, you can probably depend on your customers to be kind in their reviews. And even if you do occasionally receive unflattering feedback, your site will probably still look more appealing to new customers than if you had no reviews whatsoever; a site with fifty positive reviews and five negative reviews will generally be seen as a better bet than a site offering no information at all on the experiences of previous customers.

Choose a trusted, well-known payment system.

For most of us, buying something online is now just as humdrum and as commonplace an activity as popping to the corner shop for some milk, and yet we're still very careful about giving away our financial information online. We're right to be cautions, of course - in 2014, fraud losses on UK-issued cards totalled roughly £479 million - but that caution can be hugely problematic for honest ecommerce retailers who need people to have faith in the concept of online payment.
 
The most straightforward way to convince customers that your checkout is secure? Use a well-known payment gateway like Sage Pay or PayPal. People tend to recognise names like these (in the case of PayPal, they may even have an account already set up), and this will help them to feel at ease when they're entering their card details on your website.
 
If you decide to use a different payment gateway, be sure to do your homework first. Find out whether or not the payment provider is trustworthy and reliable, and make absolutely sure that payments will be handled over a secure connection (HTTPS). 
 

Show the human face of your business.

There are many reasons why consumers are generally more comfortable spending money in brick-and-mortar shops than on ecommerce websites, but one big reason is the lack of human faces. When you buy a book from your local Waterstones, the payment is handled by the person behind the till; they answer to a supervisor or manager, who in turn answers to someone at head office. There's a sense of accountability that's often absent when purchasing online, where it's easy to feel like you're buying from a machine with no human oversight.
 
Happily, this feeling is easy to dispel. It's a good idea to a 'Meet the Team' page to your website (here's ours) in order to introduce your customers to the people behind the machine; if you've got time, you may also want to consider sharing some photos from around the office on your blog and/or social media accounts.
 
 
Christmas Jumper Day
 
This is a great way to demonstrate that your online business is every bit as 'alive' as any high street shop, and that there are real people dealing with each order and reading each email.

Ensure that your website is functional and modern-looking.

A visitor's trust in your website will erode very quickly if they're encountering problems like these as they navigate the buying process:
  • Broken links that lead to 404 error pages
  • Pages that load slowly...or not at all!
  • Non-intuitive navigation (i.e. you've made it difficult for the user to find what they're looking for)
  • Missing (or low-quality) images
  • Poorly-written site copy that's rife with spelling/grammar mistakes
If you're raising any of these red flags, it will massively affect consumer confidence - after all, if you've made mistakes on your website, what's to say that you won't make mistakes with the orders you ship?
 
On a related note, it's important for any serious ecommerce retailer to invest in a clean, modern-looking website design. Your website is your shop floor, and if you don't make it look appealing, people will be markedly less inclined to stay and browse. This isn't just an aesthetic issue, either; a poor-quality design can be difficult to navigate, and if it looks particularly outdated, people may even get the impression that you're no longer in operation - they might think you've abandoned your online store entirely and moved on to pastures new, leaving the site to gather dust in some forgotten corner of the Internet.
 
We'd also recommend opting for a responsive website design, as this will provide mobile and tablet users with a far better purchasing experience. Millions of people now regularly use portable devices to shop online, so you're potentially missing out on a big chunk of the market if you stick with a non-responsive design.

Make yourself easy to contact.

Nobody's perfect, and even the best companies make occasional mistakes. It would be fantastic if you could eliminate all issues within your business, but in the first instance, it's more important to ensure that customers can easily report and resolve their issues when they arise.
 
So here's what you need to do: list your company's contact details PROMINENTLY on your website (e.g. in the site header, or on a contact page that's linked from the main site menu) and make sure that those contact details are up to date and active. You should ideally list as many different contact methods as possible; some people will want to send you an email, while others may prefer to speak on the phone. You might also consider listing office opening times, in case anyone is expecting you to answer the phone at 8pm on a Saturday.
 
Offering a live chat option is another great way to be there for your customers, but don't make this commitment unless you're actually prepared to answer all the chat messages that come through!
 
Live chat window
Live chat isn't email - when people see a window like this, they'll expect somebody to answer their enquiry straight away.

In summary...

People who shop online take a leap of faith every time they place an order. If a user gets to that point on your website, it's because you've done a good job of convincing them that:
  • Their payment details will be handled securely
  • Their order will be dispatched quickly and delivered within the stated timeframe
  • Their item(s) will arrive in good condition and match the description on the website
  • Any problems they happen to encounter will be taken seriously and resolved efficiently
In order to earn the trust of new customers, you need to do whatever you can to reassure them of those four things. We hope this blog post has shown you a few ways to do that - if you can think of others, please do let us know on Twitter!

How we can help

Designer Websites is an established web development company specialising in ecommerce websites. Over the past decade, we have helped countless businesses to succeed online - here are just a few examples of what we can help you with:

To request a free quotation for your ecommerce project, please click here.