21 October 2021

Don’t Discourage Your E-customers With These Annoying App Features


Marcin Bartoszuk, our CTO, has contemplated if e-commerce has a chance to overtake traditional retail. Well, as the statistics show, it will most likely happen. According to Statista, the number of dollars spent on eCommerce sites is growing every year. In 2020 only, it reached $3.45 billion. According to a global survey across 11 markets conduucted by Shopify, 84% of consumers shopped online during the pandemic.

Now, even more than ever, people are searching for shopping alternatives and e-shopping seems to hit the nail on the head in terms of satisfying their needs. More and more people cotton on to online shopping due to its increasing accessibility and convenience.

With the growing interest and demand for online shopping, opening an e-commerce business seems like a recipe for success. However, as always, easier said than done. In order to succeed, you must provide your customers with impeccable service and ensure a seamless purchasing process.

So, my question is – do you know how NOT to annoy and discourage your e-customers?  

Annoying App Features

To quench your clients, pay attention to the following problems of the functionalities. Check out my examples. 

Poor searches 

We use semantic searches when we want to perform tasks such as finding a specific product using its ID or a keyword,  finding one or more products across all offers in a fast, flexible way, performing full-text search across all product description fields or searching against specific work item fields to quickly narrow down a list of products. 

And that's exactly where poor searches problems can appear. And there's a lot of different problems that can occur:

  • when search box doesn't support proximity searches and doesn’t imply a relationship between the words or tends to produce too many matches
  • when semantic searches don’t support * and ? as wildcard characters
  • when searching is case-sensitive, which means requiring correct input of uppercase and lowercase letters
  • when your search box is not only slow but also consumes more CPU cycles (the time required for the execution of one simple processor operation)
  • when your quick filters are poor. 

What does it mean to e-customers:

  • they cannot find precisely what they want 
  • they see too many matches “suitable” for their searches 
  • they cannot see my result when they misspell a word 
  • they cannot filter the whole offer, only individual categories of products 
  • they have to wait a long time for results (3-4 s maximum is the user's comfort limit) 
  • they cannot find work items using quick filters based on products' range.  

Clumsy interface 

Application’s interface should be eye-catching and outstanding. That, especially in the fashion or beauty industry, gives you an edge over the competition. But, don’t forget about the functional details as they can also work as a deal-breaker when malfunctioning. Here are some most commonly known problems with the interface.

Search results are displayed shifted 

The page is divided into components, e.g. the one with banner, menu, quick filters, or product listing. Each of them has its own height and width. Unfortunately, sometimes there is an oversight on subpages with width divided into 2 or 3 components. It manifests itself at limited screen widths when the components do not fit each other and move against each other or their styles do not display correctly. We call it a lack of responsiveness. This obviously may affect your company's image. 

What does it mean to e-customers:

  • discouragement 
  • wrist pain if there’s a lot of scrolling. 

"Jumping” interfaces 

Imagine the situation. You want to click on category selection and in the meantime a banner pops up, moving everything an inch down. As a result, you click on the banner and enter a completely different address. There's no way around it, you have to go back. You patiently wait until the banner pops up, so as not to make the same mistake twice. The banner doesn't pop up, so you cautiously click on the link, but still, in those microseconds between my intention to click and my finger, the banner pops up again and again I end up not where I want to be. 

What does it mean to e-customers: 

  • irritation. 

User UNfriendly interface 

„User-friendly interface” is a fashionable and often misused expression. Here are some examples of what I consider to be an unfriendly interface.

No one-time purchase functionality 

Have you ever craved something but got discouraged by the obligatory registration process? Are you already tired of creating numerous accounts just to buy a single product? Well, I feel you.

What does it mean to e-customers:

  • they are forced to create an account.

Logging out automatically 

Sometimes, when a user uses the application in a way not anticipated by the programmer, they may be automatically kicked out and logged out of their accounts. 

What does it mean to e-customers: 

  • they lose the context and need to repeat the action on a website. 

No breadcrumbs in branching applications 

Breadcrumb is a graphical control element used as a navigational aid on web pages. We also call it a “trail track”. It allows users to keep track of their locations on the website and it's extremelly helpful in applications with a wide range of products. If there's no such thing, it's pretty easy to get confused when searching for categories.

What does it mean to e-customers:

  • once they find the product they're interested in, they cannot go back to its category. 

Meet the Expectations

There are a few basic principles that the client needs to fulfil. The first one, related to security - these require adherence to certain standard operating procedures. In this case, the user may “sacrifice themself” and suffer through "annoying" functionalities. But, the second one relates to e-business standards which are part of the IT industry's standards (moral standards, ethical standards, but also about language, symbols, conventions - the DNA of IT’s civilization). In this case, it is advisable to be open-minded and keep your finger on the pulse, checking the quality of your own application. Especially now, when customer requirements are becoming more and more demanding every day, it's important to keep them satisfied and meet their expectations. 

Grow your business with us!

Agnieszka Topczewska-Pińczuk
Scrum Master | Project Manager

I believe that anything I do, I do for the end-user. I maximise value by:

- setting a path to the product's goal, helping developers do what they need to do

- frequently inspecting the result of their work to confront assumptions with reality

- adapting to the changing needs of Stakeholders based on feedback and measurable data.

I manage IT products agilely and know how to make your vision a reality. Would you like to work with me?