Website is the most gainful marketing method. Through website people are engaged with its relevant company and see the website actively. Digital marketing has become an integral part of business now. It ensures online presence 24 hours. It is helpful in exchanging information from both sides. This requires a little consumption of money for advertisement. Market expansion of any company gets its goal by leaps and bounds.
Web design refers to formation of websites displayed on the internet. It is a process of making websites for different purposes. It consists of various aspects like layout page, content, production and graphic design. Websites are basically made by using HTML (A markup language). The layout and appearance of website are defined by using CSS. Most of the websites are result of combination of HTML and CSS. A less hardworking method for website design is to make it on Wordpress or Joomla. A web maker gives front-end command and back-end is automatically done by the site. Websites were used to make for desktop browsers but from 2010’s design for mobile and tablet browsers has become important. (Castañeda & Muñoz-Leiva, 2007)
A web designer works with appearance of a website. Appearance consist colors, fonts and images. Layout is categorization of information. A website designed for local vacation must appeal to the aesthetic sense of viewers. The design of website must in such a form that it should contain concise and appealing information neglecting vague and frustrated points. Two most practiced methods in developing websites for desktop and mobile are:
In responsive design content is dynamic while in adaptive design content is fixed. It is very difficult to maintain a layout which is consistent. It offers hurdles in the way of user trust and engagement.
The first stage of this project was the selection of a website of any country promoting the vacations in that area in order to redesign as building and designing an ecommerce site is much different from designing a traditional website. For this case study I have decided a site named as Tripz which is a vacation rental site providing the services related to the vacation planning and the booking for hotel, cab and air tickets. I decided to make changes in the UI and create the webpages for this task in order to improve the user experience and give this site a customized look. The main aim in this redesigning process is to improve the user interface in order to make it easier and attractive for the user and increase the number of conversions and increase the sales of the business to increase the revenue. The changed structure of the site is mobile responsive and also the server response time is also decreased to make it responsive from mobile to increase the traffic on the site and also generate the sales. (D. Thorleuchter, 2010 )
After the selection of the website, next stage was the planning of the website. At this stage we have decided a number of features and things that can impact on the development process of the website in later stages. The next stage in the website designing plan is the logo for the business or website. If the site or business has a logo and want to use that logo in the site then it is ok while if the logo is not good then rebranding of the site can make a major increase in the business progress and attract the customer. While doing the rebranding for any business make sure that the new design of the logo is minimal and gives a decent and trustworthy look to the business and has some information related to the business or highlights the business type to the customers. While using this logo in the designing process, make sure that the logo of the business has a high resolution. So in this case study I have decided the rebranding and restructuring of the complete site so I did not use the ordinary logo of the site previously used. The second most important thing at this phase of web designing was the content of the site. As an owner we know the business very well but as a client or customer who is visiting the site for the first time he do not know about the business of the site and also its services. (Jhons, 2001-2002)
So in the content writing of the site we have to consider a number of parameters such as the content should be short giving a brief idea about the business and products. It should be error free while making a professional impression to the reader and it should not be so lengthy and in an awkward syntax that make it difficult for the reader to go through the site. The second major thing in content writing is that it should be full of keywords necessary for the SEO of the site. For this purpose we selected the key words with more SEO potential. While planning the web design for the selected website the content management is also important. In the content management it is important to manage how much area of content should be displayed at a page and how much should be at the next page.
Another important part of this e-commerce site planning is the selection of database as every ecommerce site has its database as a compulsory part as every ecommerce site has an admin part where admin can change the product listing, prices and take the orders from the customers. This database is also important in order to store the client’s history and data to use for the promotion in future and provide the special customer support to long term clients. So the database selected for this purpose was to be designed in mongo dB. The next part that is planned to make a better user experience was the login credentials for the user and the admin as the frequent buyers do not want to enter their information all the time so they have to save their private information in their account such as their, email, phone identity number and their payment information on the site. (O. G. Fragoso-Diaz, 2008)
To make this process easier and safer for the user we planned the login credentials for the user which the user can create on the step of registration and later on by simply log in to the site and complete any purchase through his saved payment method which is also secured and no one can steal. The installation of different types of payment methods such as master card, debit or credit card is also planned in the designing structure of this website designing and development process. The UI of a site is the first and most important thing in website design as this is the first place of user interaction so it was planned to arrange in such a way that it has a minimum written data and more visual aid of the company business and services so that a person visiting for the first time can understand the company business, its services and products from their first interaction.
It was also planned to include the animation of video and pictures of the spots that are being most visited in the season and any sale or discount price pop up at the top of this page to attract the user to see the offer and get discounted prices. The color scheme was planned according to the services and dark, eye catching colors were decided for the UI of the site. The page interface was kept in such a way that it should give a separate page for every different service. So if a client wants on book a ticket then this page should give the information and prices of only air tickets and a separate page for cab booking and hotel room booking. A feedback page was also planned after a service so that the user can help the owners to improve the visitors experience and overcome the flaws that are stopping the business from the customers to purchase the things from that e commerce store. (O. G. Fragoso-Diaz, 2008)
A section for the careers and contact us page was also planned so that if any customer need to talk to the admin or the management of e commerce store then he has the immediate access to the admin and can get the run time assistance as well as can ask them to resolve the queries and can register the complaints immediately and then directly follow the status of that specific ticket generated for his complaint. In this stage the complete structure, pages, functionalities and technologies were planned and a scheme to implement these things with a relevant time frame was planned to make the process flow continuous and set the goals according to their deadline.
At the implementation stage of this site where I have made five pages for this website planned in the previous stage. While implementing this site I have used the framework of java script. The page flow of the site is kept in such a way that at the first step on the landing page and then there is a login page. If the user is already registered on the site then he will go to the sign in option and simply by entering his email and password he will be able to login and see the products and data on the site. If the user is not registered on the site already then he has to register on the site while completing any purchase. For this purpose user has to enter his email, first name and last name, password for the site that he want to select and then sign up to get register on the site. Below diagram shows the data flow of the user side page for the login. This show that the user will submit the request to log in and if the data entered in the log in section is right then it will go to the database where the data of the customer is checked and then the customer page is displayed. But if the entered data is wrong then the user will remain in the same page.
User Registration Diagram
This registration process is necessary and has great importance for the frequent users to save their information at once and then they have no need to enter the information manually in next visit. If the user has created his profile on the site and has mistakenly entered wrong data then there is an option for him to open his profile and edit the information that he has entered on the profile in order to change the invalid information at any later stage. (Sheth, 2003)
There is a feedback form on the site where user can give the feedback about his experience with the services and also with the site and can suggest the management about any further improvement and also can highlight the bugs. The diagram below shows the customer log in page where the customer submits a request for the login which is then sent to the HTML which sees if the information is correct then it checks from the database and if the entered information is correct then it will display the customer page and in second case it will display page having an error message in it.
Customer Login Function
Next implementation was the admin registration and login to the site. When the admin logs in to the admin area of the site then it t=checks the admin credentials if they are entered accurately or not. If this data provided by the admin is correct then it opens a page for the admin where the admin can have the access to the admin webpage where he can manage the webpages and the data on them. The below diagram is the MVC diagram that shows the overall flow of the site for user and admin how both pages are communicating with database. (THORLACIUS, 2007)
MVC Diagram of Online Shop
The site is for air ticketing, cab rental and hotel rental business. As the word ecommerce refers to the selling and purchasing of the goods and services electronically using internet so this site is also an ecommerce site as it fulfills the criteria of ecommerce business. It is for the online booking of different services. If user wants to book an air ticket for him, he can visit the site where a number of air tickets, the time of flight and the price of tickets is already mentioned along with the discount on every price.
Database is very important part of e commerce store as it save the information of products, users, admin and store the activity of the user. The activities stored in this data base can help the business to suggest the services to the client on the bases of his visit using machine learning techniques. The database used in this designing project is MySQL data base which is used to store the data for this site. It has a number of tables to store different type of information such as separate tables for storing the information of admins, services, categories, customers’ products and orders. (Wei Jiang, 2014)
There are two types of interfaces in the web development and design. First one is the customer or consumer interface and the second in admin interface which has more accessibilities than the customer interface. The user or customer interface layout was designed in such a way that the admin can add remove or replace a product on the page while the consumer or customer can browse the product of his requirement, then compare the prices of a number of products available and then by adding that into the cart he can checkout to the payment gateway. The main homepage of the site is the page that will be displayed whenever a user browse the name of the site and at this page the information of the services provided by the site are clearly displayed as shown in below screen shot.
The above page is designed in such a way that the visitor can select the option of his desire either he want to book a cab or buy a meal. Similarly at the lower section of the site there is a feature destination section that encourages the visitor to visit these areas as their best scenes are captured below along with the lowest price to attract the customer attention and encourage them to buy something from the site that will increase the revenue of the business. The management interface is designed for the admin to enter his username, email and password and proceed for the login where HTML will check the accuracy of the entered data. If all the data is entered correctly then it will give the access to the admin to its area in the site otherwise it will ask him to re-enter the field which is entered incorrectly. The development of this site was completed while keeping a number of factors in mind to reduce the implementation cost of the site and all the functionalities of this e commerce store were needed to be carried out in an orderly manner. (Štula, 2018)
At e commerce page the flow of site is in such a way that the user will enter the page where he want to purchase any service. He will click on the add to cart button in front of that special product an d this product will be added to the cart and then the user has to checkout for the payment and. On the admin side, once the order is placed, the admin will get a notification for that specific product and the information of the client to whom this specific service or booking belongs and the admin will make the requirement arrangements and follow the procedures to complete this sale. The database will store the data for the customer visit and his previous history as well as the information such as his email, contact number; previously purchased things etc. the products on the product page are sorted in an ascending order. The product with minimum price is displayed at the top of the board. There is a feedback page on the top of every page where a registered user can give feedback related to the services. As the conversion rate in e commerce store is very less so to increase this conversion rate and generate more revenue there is a section for the discount implementation.
When the admin want to change the price or want to insert some discount prices he can simply put that amount for the discount in terms of percentage and all the prices belonging to that specific criteria will be changed according to that specific percentage and makes it highlighted as discounted price to attract the user’s attention. This site is a dynamic site whose development is based on the java script as this is a client side language that is easy to use and learn and it is comparatively fast for the end user. It has the extended functionality to web pages and there is no compilation needed for this language. This is a platform independent and easy to debug language. It is an event based programming language and it is used in dynamic web pages and interactive by implementing customized client side scripts. This language is widely used in the dynamic webpages of a huge number of website.
The conversion rate of ecommerce sites for vocational and holiday planning is very low as compare to other media and marketing sites which is about 4% in this case while for the other sites the conversion rate is up to 10% which is far away from the conversion rates of these sites. The issue behind this low conversion rate is that the registration process on these sites is very complex, like most of the sites ask the user to register his payment method at the start of visiting the site without let him showing interest in any product. This thing leads the visitor to leave the site without any action. So the registration process should be as simple that the user can sign in by using only his mail and name. The database queries should be well managed so that it only shows the results related to the users interest while the packages should be displayed in ascending order so that the minimum price package is displayed on the top.
There should be filters for the price range as well which can allow the user to search the packages within his budget limit. There should be a clear a best view of the location while suggesting a location for travel so that it attracts the user’s interest. While selecting a package there should be a clear visualization of reviews in terms of stars like if there are total 100 reviews on the package and there are 50 reviews for five stars 40 reviews as four stars and 10 with three stars then it should clearly display the reviews in terms of the counts so that it help a user to decide either the location is good to go or not. There should be a filter for negative and positive reviews so that user can access any of them immediately instead of viewing all the reviews. (Štula, 2018)
There should be an immediate chat box to chat with the customer support in order to resolve the user queries immediately. There should be trustworthy payment methods integrated on the site which make it easier for the user to trust the site while paying. There should be a one click access to every service like a button or a drop down menu where user can access his interest without typing anything to see like if the user wants to book an air ticket or a hotel then there should be different pages where the user can click and find the specific deal. There should be a package for all the services provided like air ticket, hotel booking and car rental for the users who need all these services. This will help the user to select a single package in which the site can also give a special discount and attractive price to client in order to convert it in a sale. The discount price should be displayed in terms of amount and not in percentage to attract the user to purchase something in order to avail that discount. (Sheth, 2003)
We can change the main interface of the designed site in such a way that the homepage shows a short documentary of upcoming hot deal or the event which is to be organized in near future to attract the visitors to visit that event and also a complete discounted deal for that event including travel, food and residence to help the visitor to decide if he should go there or not. There should be a minimum price tag with every destination so that it attracts the visitor’s attention while looking at the price tag. The user should be able to visit all the pages without getting register on the site and once they are moving to check out with a product then they should be asked to create the account and register the payment method. The discounts related to every page like travel, food and rental services should be highlighted at the top of the page. There should be a pop up for the recommendations and the interested user should be notified using send grid to send the mails in case of special discounts. There should be a social media popup of for the site from which the user can follow the pages of the site on Facebook instagram and other channels. There should also be an animation of images of different events and locations along with the price tag animating at the top. (Štula, 2018)
A gallery section for the users to post their photos from the previous trips approved by the site admin to show the visitors how the clients enjoyed the previous destination with our services. Color scheme of front page should be attractive and the pages should be integrated easily. The notes for the destination should be written in easy to read font. There should be a choice of selecting few different services and a combination and then compare the price to select the one most suitable for the tour and also a single click check out procedure for all the products. While selecting the packages there should be a window on the top of the screen showing the previously selected thing to compare the price with new one. There should be an automated mail generated after the completion of the tour of the user to remind him to post his review on the site. This will help the users to see the site as trustworthy. A page for the recommendations of the event by accessing the user location and then by finding the nearest events to his location, the cost to visit that, place, restaurant or hotel and the images and videos of every single event and location can encourage the user to visit that. In the hotel booking section there should be a clear price tag along with the hotel images, room images, services provided by the hotel and the public reviews in the form of stars to help the user in his selection. It should recommend the things of user’s interest on the bases of his previous searches using machine learning. (Wei Jiang, 2014)
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