E-commerce is one of the fastest growing sectors in different parts of the world, including Singapore. With a population of about six million, the country boasts of being one of the wealthiest across the globe. Its economy is stable, and people work with one of the fastest Internet connections, which contributes the rapid shift from traditional ways of doing business to e-commerce.
Combining all these aspects explains why Singapore is currently one of the fastest growing Asian economies. With good Internet penetration and speeds, over 80 percent of Singaporeans utilize and access the web every day. For this reason, e-commerce thrives with the high number of people accessing the Internet. Also, the fact that most people in Singapore are tech-savvy encourages e-commerce because they prefer making online transactions over walking into a physical store.
E-commerce in Singapore has been in an upward trajectory for the past few years, and that’s because most of these online retail stores have been investing heavily in great design ideas for their websites.
How were they able to achieve this? What factors qualify a particular website into an absolute winner and another — despite stacking the same products and an almost similar structure and layout — still falls flat?
Well, if you’re an ecommerce developer, then you don’t need to be reminded that developing a fully functional ecommerce website is NOT an easy feat. There’s a lot to streamline and take into consideration for the site you’re creating to match the industry standards.
The list below contains a number of ecommerce sites in Singapore that we handpicked after taking few things into consideration. It’s also safe to say that these e-commerce websites are among the most successful ones in Singapore, and this is partly because their designs are almost seamless.
40 Inspirational E-commerce Websites in Singapore
1: Jadia Logistics
Items: Logistics services.
Description: The design sets out what it is all about from the start. It has a button that lets customers book services right from the homepage.
2: Happy Office People
Items: Office furniture.
Description: Given its type of products, this site uses colourful imagery to help buyers explore their options using their eyes.
3: Kartoon Kracker
Description: The website design is colourful with banners of popular superhero characters that seek to call out the target audience of children.
Description: Mayer’s website is easy to navigate around at first glance. It is clean with quality imagery, which displays the various items on sale.
Items: Honey products.
Description: The design features excellent, breathtaking imagery with a yellow theme that exudes the kind of things on sale on the website.
6: The 3 Kraters
Items: Alcoholic beverages.
Description: This website features a simple yet classy demeanour with elegant-looking imagery. The drinks are available according to different types of categories including age, price, brand, and type.
Description: AliExpress is one of the largest e-commerce websites in the world. It serves almost every country. The website features a clean and straightforward interface that is also mobile-friendly. Additionally, it is pleasing to the eye given its bright orange-themed colour scheme and a centred search bar at the top.
8: Lovera Collections
Items: Home Décor.
Description: The website leans more towards photography to present the available items. It shows an array of sophisticated wares that would, undoubtedly, appeal to anyone looking for things to decorate their homes and kitchen.
Items: Booking service.
Description: Hotel.com is a global hotel booking service that also serves Singapore. It features a simple design with a calendar to help in setting dates. This site is flexible and does not have many distractions.
Items: Beauty and skincare products.
Description: Sephora’s site is also simple in design with a black and white theme that is easy on the eye. The homepage shows new products and a search bar, which is available for specific searches.
11: Lorna Jane
Items: Sporting Apparel.
Description: Another niche site, Lorna Jane is clear at first glance about what it sells. The colours are vibrant, and the design is classy-looking with some gorgeous fonts. The design features moving images to make the shopping experience worthwhile with more for the shopper to see.
Description: Crocs features large clear images that make it easier for the buyer to shop. Different categories appear side by side for easy selection, making the shopping process quicker than having to scroll through a list of items on sale. A buyer can also perform a quick look at a product without leaving the search page.
Description: The Shopee website design is quite straightforward and manages to give an overview of everything it sells in the home page. It includes a search filter with many parameters for a buyer to set. Like other great sites, this one is also simple with minimal distractions.
Items: Electronics and Furniture.
Description: This site features a large banner displaying discounts and the available hot products. As such, buyers can easily access common items without having to perform a search. The interface is clean with great colouring and high-quality images.
15: The Tea Depot
Description: The site’s design is minimalistic but rich in imagery that highlights the different types of tea, which one can find.
Items: Designer Wear.
Description: Considering the items on sale, the user interface features fancy fonts against a simple design. Since the customers on this site are after designer wear, it would only be right if the website design looks elegant. It does not have too many listed items considering that it focuses on the rare and expensive products.
Description: The Yoox website is quite smooth with a clean black and white theme. This design makes the products stand out since it has little going on around the items. Categories are well-defined, making it easy for individual shoppers looking for ideas on what to get
18: Oto Body Care
Items: Fitness equipment.
Description: The site deals in wellness and fitness products. In this regard, the site’s design exudes what healthy living entails with its imagery.
Description: Aesthetically, Zalora almost resembles Yoox. The categorisation aspect is also the same. Finding products is also easy with the simple theme and detailed search bar.
Description: Lazada borrows a lot from AliExpress in regards to simplicity and a clean user interface. Categories, popular items, and other listings come against a white backdrop that makes everything clear. As a result, navigating through the sight should be a walk in the park for anyone.
21: Visual Mass
This one is quite a looker. It’s an ecommerce website that specialises in selling spectacles.
The first thing that catches your eyes when you first check the site is the slider, featuring the photo of a girl donning one of the spectacles.
You scroll down, and there are more of these photos, and every time you hover around one, it enlarges, giving you an even clearer view.
Everything on the site is sleek and clean. Their photos are professionally done and convincing.
There’s a lot you can achieve with a minimalist design, and Visual Mass is clear proof that you don’t need to be extra to be attractive.
22: Runaway Bandit
Runaway bandit is as conspicuous as you’d want your site to be. You place it among several other sites, and the first site that will be popping up all over your face, and leaving an impression that will be sticking with you for longer is Runaway Bandit.
For a site that sells women clothing, Runaway Bandit focuses on catching your attention from the get-go.
The ladies in the slider are designed to work all the magic. You look at their photos, and the next thing you know is that you want to dress like them.
Our bet, you don’t need any further convincing to make up your mind and place an order. Runaway Bandit knows how to capture your attention without putting a strain on their effort.
Qanvast is a home renovation, design, remodelling, and furnishing firm in Singapore. They’re the best in this line of trade, and their website does all the talking for them.
Let’s just say they have one of the most stunning websites around. But what you’d love the most is the whole concept behind it.
Saying it has a wow factor would be an understatement. What Qanvast is doing is serving you with website goals, and trying to capture their customers attention in a way that most of them will have a hard time resisting.
Everything you need to know about Qanvast’s services can be found on the site. They’ve provided virtually any relevant piece of information on the site, and all you have to do to find it is keep scrolling.
25: The Boldr Watches
The Boldr Watches is an ecommerce store for watches. The site is everything you’d want a site of its kind to be, and they’ve managed to accomplish all this without doing anything extra, and by being as minimalistic as it can get.
The site is clean, neatly designed, big images, and most importantly, with a clear and conspicuous call to action.
Scroll further down through the site and you’ll be meeting close up photos of the watches with their specific details tagged alongside each one of them.
26: Go Bear
Not exactly an ecommerce website, but it deserves a mention on a list like this.
It’s an idea you could jerk if you have a few products you’re selling, and are looking to make everything fun.
The first thing that captures your attention is the bear. It’s cute and colourful.
The designer also had a lot of fun playing around with the colour and contrasting them.
Their interface is also great, and you can tell the company was more focused on branding while designing the site. And the results were spectacular.
Gmarket decided to rebrand a few years back. It changed the name and almost everything you knew about it, and Qoo10 was the result that came out of all that effort.
As it stands, Qoo10 is one of the biggest shopping sites in Singapore. It’s among the few sites that come to mind whenever someone suggests that you go shopping.
The site sells just about everything – shoes, sunglasses, mobile phones, makeup, Korean food, electronics, and food, to name a few.
As you can see, the rebranding worked. It didn’t take long before Qoo10 grew to be one of the biggest ecommerce platforms in Singapore. At the time of writing this, the platform boasts about 1.6 million registered users, with a monthly revenue stream of about SGD 26 million.
Three graduates from the National University of Singapore (NUS), Lucas Ngoo, Marcus Tan, and Quek Siu Rui, teamed up a few years back and started Carousell. What they didn’t know is that they were starting what would be one of the biggest online marketplaces in Singapore.
Carousell is a platform that allows people to buy and sell all kinds of items in Singapore, whether new or old. It’s a platform where sellers list their items, and then wait for interested buyers to click on them and make a purchase.
Carousell is pretty simple to use. Buyers and sellers are guided by intuition, where they just know where to click to complete an action.
RedMat is a popular ecommerce platform in Singapore. It’s an ecommerce platform that allows you to order groceries and other home essentials from any part of Singapore and at any time of the day. The ordered items will then be delivered right at your doorstep within two hours, regardless of the day.
This online shopping platform was founded in 2011. It would be sold to Alibaba-backed Lazada fives years down the line, in 2016.
Honestbee is the new kid on the block, and apparently one of RedMat’s biggest competitors in Singapore.
Founded in 2015, Honestbee has grown to be one of the most reliable online concierge and delivery services for groceries in the country. It strives to relieve you of the daily, time-consuming grocery-shopping chores.
They’ve partnered with different supermarket chains in Singapore so they can deliver all the groceries you need right at your doorstep, upon ordering.
Hipvan was launched in 2013. Targeting Singapore’s home market, the company has grown to be one of the leading providers of lifestyle products and designer furniture in Singapore.
This came after the company noticed that the issue of low-quality products, coupled with low-quality furniture options, was affecting the Singapore market. So, they introduced HipVan as a solution to these two problems.
One might as well say that the company has been true to its words – it has grown to be one of the leading online stores for quality furniture and lifestyle products in the country.
At the beginning of 2019, the company would decide to set up their flagship store in Dhoby Ghaut, thus making it even easier for them to run their operations.
FairPrice is an ecommerce platform for groceries, food items, and baby products for Singapore customers. The company stands out because it delivers your order right at your doorstep at the time of your choosing.
It’s ranked as one of the largest supermarket chains in the country, where users can still visit it and shop from their physical store.
For orders that are above $59, the company will deliver the ordered items for free. For orders that are between $29 and $59, customers have to visit one of their 51 locations to collect the items.
33: eBay Singapore
The local version of eBay is ranked as one of the most popular ecommerce platforms in Singapore. Originally created as a platform where consumers were to trade among themselves, the company has grown to be a buy-and-sell marketplace where seller list their products and wait for customers to buy them – just like they do in an ordinary ecommerce platform.
This version of eBay is also ranked as one of the most stylish ecommerce platforms in the country. At the header section of the website is a nicely designed slider that gives you a sense of what to expect once you log into the site.
The platform cannot compete on the same scale as Shopee and Carousell, but its popularity has been pretty consistent over the years, even more than that of any other platform in the country.
34: Ezbuy Singapore
Ezbuy is an eCommerce platform that specialises in clothing, beauty products, electronics, and automotive. It’s a multinational company with stores in Thailand, Indonesia, and Malaysia.
The company imports much of its products from Korean, America, and Taiwan.
It was started in 2010, and since then it’s been striving to make it easy for their customers to both buy and ship products from the countries above.
The company doubles as an ecommerce platform and forwarding company, and the best part is that they don’t have to spell it out there for their customers. Instead, they have one of the most intuitive websites that leaves nothing to be explained – all credit goes to their UX designer behind the entire concept.
Biocair site isn’t just special, but amazeballs — simple, with a minimal amount of information, and hitting straight the point.
It probably didn’t take the developer so much time to set up the site, but it did take them more time to come up with the whole idea, and the results were amazing.
BioCare uses a flat design for their site. Everything is planned and strategically placed to somehow clue you in on their earnest approach. It’s a clean design that doesn’t struggle to impress you with extras. You look at the site, and your mind can process what it’s all about within seconds.
36: Modern Link
Modern Link retails houses. Their site is clear, loads faster, and context-rich. It’s purposeful, with categories that break up everything to an intuitive level.
The slider plays its role by giving you a sense of what the site is all about. And then there’s a link to almost any piece of information you want to dig out. It never gets much easier than this.
37: Ocean Health
Ocean Health specialises in health enhancement products, as listed on their website. Alongside each listed product, there’s an easy to understand product description.
Their descriptions are clear and written in both English and Chinese without making you choose anything. Everything is all there for you to read, and it’s upon you to hover your eyes to the language you understand while ignoring the rest.
38: Books Actually
Booksactually is an independent book store. It’s one of the bookstores in Singapore that stock a huge collection of obscure titles, even those that are out of print.
Now their books store takes an entirely different approach. Where you could have just expected them to list books, they have gone an extra mile and played with art, just to ensure it perfectly blends with the front book covers they upload on site.
Each book will capture your attention from the get-go, and get you to consider clicking on them for furthers details.
Their books are also arranged in categories, in a manner that communicates to you, unlike all the other bookstores you know.
ShopBack offers shoppers the added incentive of earning cashback for the purchases they make. This isn’t some new concept, considering most ecommerce store in the UK and the US have also been offering cashback on e-purchases. So, it’s safe to assume the company borrowed the idea from them.
The founder of ShopBack has been able to run with the same idea and even managed to bring other ecommerce stores on board, including Lazada, Taobao, and Zalora.
There’s a buffet of merchants on their website, filling up their landing pages in all categories. Everything is clear on the site – as a user, all you have to do is make a purchase using a link provided, and you’ll be eligible for a certain percentage of the amount you spend as cashback.
Guardian is a well-known pharmacy chain in Singapore. Launched in 2014, Guardian not only offers a wide range of health products to the people of Singapore. It also serves as a virtual consultation platform, where people can reach out and talk to a qualified physician about their problems via a live chat.
After you’ve described your problem, you can be prescribed a drug, with an option or link to buy the drug directly from the site.
The site is simple to figure out. Their business model is also intuitive. You have a health complication, so why not talk to a physician who’ll either advise you to go to the hospital or purchase one of their over-the-counter drugs, depending on the nature of your problem.
The Rise And Necessity Of Providing E-Commerce In Websites Now
Major merchants in the country allow the use of credit card for online shopping, which further motivates individual Singaporeans to become online shoppers. Reports place the worth of the Singaporean e-commerce sector at approximately 5.4 billion dollars by 2025, representing five times its value back in 2016. At the current pace, the numbers in question are achievable. Different e-commerce websites are available to cater for the high demand in Singapore, with some operating as general stores while others niche-based. Competition is high among these websites, and simple aspects like design may be what separates the best from the rest. Here are some of the elements of a great e-commerce website.
Characteristics of a Good E-commerce Website
A great e-commerce website should have most, if not all, of the following essential elements for it to succeed.
- Mobile friendly because most people use smartphones for online transactions these days.
- An easy checkout process that is clear and swift.
- Have guest signups instead of forcing customers to fill long registration forms.
- Quality pictures and photography to attract buyers.
- Clear return policies to help customers with purchase decisions.
- Comprehensive product descriptions.
- Simple design with clear labels to increase conversion rates.
Consistency is Key
Your primary concern is with branding your business. You want to keep the design coherent with the products you’re selling.
As a rule of thumb, ecommerce web designing demands that your customers should be able to associate your website with your product. With a sweeping glance, they should be able to tell the kind of products to expect once they decide to check out the site.
When designing an ecommerce website, it’s crucial that you start by making sure that every single element of the site — starting from the images and the color schemes, all the way to the text and font choices — perfectly defines your ecommerce brand.
For instance, if you’re planning to sell toys, it’s vital that you focus on making the site more playful and colorful. Also, if you plan to sell electronic gadgets, then the ecommerce web designer you choose should be focusing more on making the site look more techy and modern.
To keep it brief, the design idea you choose should be one that strives to match your site with the merchandise you’re selling to a T.
As cliche as this sounds, there’s more to gain by banking on simplicity than cluttering your site with unnecessary complications. Part of the reason some ecommerce websites stick out despite leaning more on the minimalistic side is that the designer behind the ecommerce webshop has mastered the art of less is more.
They know what their site’s visitors are interested in, and instead of being tempted to offer more, they try to provide them with the best of what they think will be enhancing their user experience.
Simplicity should be among the top things to prioritize on while developing an ecommerce web portal for your business. The best part is that it’s possible to achieve elegance while still cashing on simplicity; you just have to be creative about it.
Confirming this is a series of recent studies, most of which appear to comport with the fact that about 76% of consumers out there think ease of use is one of the most critical characteristics of an ecommerce shopping site.
Your objective should be to come up with an ecommerce store that helps the shoppers you attract get what they want much faster and without encountering any hardship while at it.
If anything, online sellers want to be able to go through with a purchase in a matter of minutes, if NOT seconds, once they decide to buy.
One thing with ecommerce web designing is that all your focus should be directed on user experience. The designing idea you come up with should factor on how you’ll be arranging the shopping categories and filters while allowing for easy comparison of the products in your ecommerce store.
The customers’ reviews should also be a cinch to find. Not forgetting, the FAQ section of the site should only be a twinkle away should the shopper decide to reach out for it.
Mobile responsiveness still applies to ecommerce websites. Google made a directive that the online community has NO option than to conform to as is.
Google made it clear that any website that won’t be loading fine enough on a mobile device, as well, is at risk of tanking down in the SERPs. But that’s NOT even the scary part when you come to think of the fact that more than half of all the purchases online shoppers make will be carried out on a smartphone.
By responsive we mean the site should be able to automatically adapt to any screen size without losing its structure or any other vital element. Users are also NOT expected to feel the difference when loading the site whether on mobile or desktop.
An easily Recognizable Logo
Whether you’re running a branded store or startup shop, the first thing you’d want to do is to come up with an easily recognizable logo for your business.
Think of a logo as a reassuring symbol of your business or an element of trust that squashes any doubt your potential customers have concerning your business.
That’s one trick that favorite brands always have up their sleeves. They first created an easily-recognizable logo for their business, then spend the bulk of their time working around their brand, trying to develop a solid reputation for it.
So every time they release a product and slap the logo on it, users have no trouble trusting it.
You can start by looking for a qualified ecommerce graphics designer and share your idea of a logo with them. They should be able to help you create a stunning logo for your business. But even with this, be reminded that simplicity is still the way to go.
Back on your site, it’s essential that you try to make your logo visible by placing it at a strategic point on the site. Don’t go on over-complicating things, if your brand is popular enough, then a logo or mascot, accompanied by a beautiful image of your products together with the ‘Buy” button is enough for an amazing ecommerce design idea.
An Easy Checkout
An easy checkout system means your site’s visitors will have an easy time shopping on your website. This is an important first step to increase the conversion rate of your site. It also goes a long way to enhancing user experience.
If anything, there isn’t much difference between your ecommerce webshop and a standard brick and mortar store. When a customer visits a store, they have the option to ask questions or pick an item they want and then proceed to the counter to make payments.
One downside though is that the customer may be forced to queue as the account clerk attends to other customers. Or it could be that the clerk is briefly NOT available — and if this is the case, the customer is likely to be tempted to leave the store and buy the item elsewhere.
So in a way, your e-shop should be trying to mimic a functional physical store offering top-notch services. Starting with how potential customers visit your site. Just like we have aisles in physical stores that work to distinguish where to find a particular item, a good ecommerce store is expected to have everything organized into categories.
A simple organization will also demand that filters be among the first thing your visitors see upon landing on your site. But most importantly, the site should feature an easy checkout, live chat, and visible contact information that your visitors can use to contact you just in case they’re stuck and would like to use your help.
Also worth mentioning is that you should also be willing to offer free shipping and painless returns with money back guarantees, just in case any of the customers are dissatisfied with the product they get.
A Guest Sign-up or Check-out
Customers’ experience is of great importance in ecommerce. In whatever you do, the last thing you want to do is force your customers into doing something they’re NOT comfortable doing.
For instance, you don’t want to force them to sign up on your site when they’re NOT positively sure if they’ll be making return trips for another purchase.
So what you do is that you allow them to proceed with guest sign-ups or check-outs. It could be that they’re in a rush and as such lack the time to go through with an endless form-filling. With guest sign-ups, your customers are only allowed to enter relevant information while skipping the rest of the formalities to save time and unnecessary hassle.
They can enter their email addresses, followed by their billing and shipping address and that’s it. It’s also essential that you be extra polite while at it to get them to come back and consider signing up with you later on when they have the time.
In addition to enabling a quick transaction, guest checkouts also make it possible to remain anonymous while at it.
Use Quality Pictures and Illustrations
Images make it easy for you to sell a product online — NOT just any image, but high-quality ones that visually walk your customers through the details on the products you’re selling.
Ever visited an ecommerce store and saw a product that had a great description but with NO image placed next to it? What was your immediate reaction? Didn’t your level of trust drop from where it was to zero?
Same goes for blurry images that hide the details.
The first thing that pops up in your mind every time you come across a listed product with no image or has poor imagery is suspicion. What is it that the company is trying to hide? Is the product in poor shape or standards?
The underlying customer knows so little about you and your business, and the only way you can get them to trust you and make up their mind to proceed with a purchase is by assuring them that you’ve got nothing to hide.
You’re even NOT supposed to create room for the idea to crop up in their mind — because once it does, it grows like a weed. And eventually, it becomes even harder for you to remove it.
Comprehensive Product Descriptions
Business owners often underestimate the importance of creating a selling product description. The web development aspect of the site can be up to snuff, but unless you dedicate enough time to crafting witty product descriptions that drive potential customers to make up their mind and make a purchase, then your site is far from doing you any good.
One common mistake many people make is copy-pasting the product description on the manufacturer’s website directly to their ecommerce store. Well, as a serious business owner looking to drive massive sales through search engines, then this is the worst mistake you can ever think of doing.
For what’s worth, Google has a harsh penalty on anyone that duplicates content. So unless you’re NOT looking to secure a prime ranking in the SERPs, then copying any piece of content directly on the internet and directly to your site is bound to do you more harm than good, soon or later.
Rewriting manufacturer’s description is NOT an option either. When you look at it, manufacturers always focus on the technical and feature specification of a product, most of which are too stilt and sometimes complicated to be understood by an average shopper.
What you should be focusing on instead is how you’re going to get your customers to make up their mind and proceed to check out — and the best approach to take is by trying to focus on product benefits while drafting the descriptions
Your customers want to read about what the product will be doing for them, and NOT what it’s made up of. They want to be told about how their life will be changing for the better once they decide to purchase the product.
When writing the description, try to wear the face of a salesperson on the spot. Your end goal is to get the customer to buy the product, so what should you be telling them to get them to buy?
Let’s Wrap it Up
While these post touches on some of the vital aspects of a great ecommerce store, most of the time, a great web designing idea will be operating within a brand’s standards. Meaning, it’s upon you to look deep into your business and analyze its needs before you can go ahead and consider hiring the services of a web developer to help you build a cool ecommerce website for your business.
For more information regarding ecommerce or help in setting up a stunning ecommerce store, you’re kindly invited to reach out to MediaOne today for free consultation or web development.