These days, anyone with something to sell, some money and some time can set up shop online. However, building an ecommerce site \u201cis not like the Field of Dreams,\u201d says Danielle Savin, director of digital strategy and digital marketing at LYONSCG, an ecommerce\/digital agency. \u201cJust because you build it does not mean that anyone will [come] to your web store.\u201d\n[ Related: 11 ways to build your online brand ]\nIf you want online shoppers to buy from you, you need to have not just great products, you need people to be able to find you and to make your store a place where people will want to shop, repeatedly. How can you do that? Here are 8 suggestions from ecommerce pros.\n[ Related: 8 ecommerce categories that will be hot in 2016 ]\n1. Your ecommerce site should look good \u2013 and function properly \u2013 across platforms and devices, especially mobile devices. When designing your ecommerce site, make sure it can be viewed on whichever platform, browser and device your customers are using. Mobile optimization \u2013 how quickly your site will load on a mobile device and how text and images will look on a small screen \u2013 is particularly important as more consumers are using smartphones to research, browse and purchase items.\n\u201cCreating a seamless user experience across all platforms is vital for any ecommerce business,\u201d says Arthur Thompson, director of storefront engineering, Wayfair. \u201cMobile optimization, in particular, is essential. Whenever possible, go above and beyond simply tailoring the desktop interface to mobile by embracing unique mobile features that can enhance the experience, [such as] real-time sale notifications and seamless checkout solutions [such as] Apple Pay and Android Pay.\u201d\n2. Your ecommerce site should feel credible and trustworthy. \u201cBe sure to have an SSL certificate and serve up your pages via https,\u201d says Marc Nashaat, digital PR manager, Powered by Search. \u201cAs an ecommerce site this is absolutely critical. Google will be unlikely to rank transaction-oriented sites that do not secure the transmission of private or financial information. More importantly your customers will be less likely to trust you or the safety of their credit card information.\u201d\u00a0\n[ Related: 10 ways multichannel companies can build trust with customers ]\n\u201cClearly display what steps you take to protect your customers from theft and fraud,\u201d says Alex Drysdale, founder & CEO,\u00a0Crik Nutrition, the makers of a cricket-based protein powder.\u00a0\u201cHave a valid SSL certificate so your site displays https. Have a recognizable third-party security company, such as McAfee, scan your site and display their mark.\u00a0 An easy-to-understand guarantee and returns policy [also] go a long way [toward] reassuring potential buyers to take the leap.\u201d\n3. Your ecommerce site should be easy to navigate, so visitors can find what they\u2019re looking for with minimal clicks. The fastest way to lose a potential customer? Make it difficult for her to find what she\u2019s looking for. Therefore it\u2019s critical that ecommerce businesses make products easy to find, by having clear top-level navigation (menus) with product categories clearly labeled and pop out subcategories.\n\u201cStrong search functionality is [also] essential,\u201d says Darren Hill, cofounder & CEO,\u00a0WebLinc, a commerce and operations management platform.\u00a0\u201cIt\u2019s been estimated that up to 30 percent of visitors [to ecommerce sites] utilize site search. Search users can convert at 50 to 80 percent higher rates than non-search users. But if site visitors don\u2019t find the products they\u2019re looking for, they\u2019ll hit the back button and visit your competitor\u2019s site. [So] when designing your site, [include an] easily visible [search box], so shoppers [can] quickly find what they need.\u201d\n4. Your ecommerce site should have great original photos and helpful product descriptions. \u201cOne of the biggest mistakes I see looking through hundreds of [ecommerce sites] a day is homogeneity of experience \u2013 the same stock images and the same stock descriptions used on store after store in the same niche,\u201d says Joe Sinkwitz, CEO of Intellifluence, an influencer marketing service for ecommerce stores.\n\u201cNot only is Google not going to provide a ranking benefit for duplicated content, a consumer that is shopping around is going to think you\u2019re all the same and make a decision solely on price,\u201d he says. Instead, \u201cgo the extra yard to differentiate: create videos of your products, take custom photos and write descriptions as though an actual human is reading them instead of a robot.\u201d\n\u201cA picture is worth a thousand words,\u201d says BJ Nickol, cofounder & president, All American Clothing Co. \u201cPeople are very visual and will often form an opinion about your business and\/or products within seconds of seeing your site. If you want to give people a good first impression and improve your conversions you need to have great imagery.\u201d\n\u201cHigh quality, professional photos are a must for increasing conversions,\u201d says Drysdale.\u00a0\u201cCustomers want real pictures of your actual product.\u00a0If you're selling someone else\u2019s products it's worth it to take your own pictures and add something different to them that helps you stand out from the competition.\u201d\u00a0\n5. Your ecommerce site should feature customer reviews \u2013 and make it easy for customers to leave reviews. \u201cCustomers trust fellow customers much more than they trust retailers or brands trying to sell them something,\u201d says Faraz Mohammed, director of advanced technology solutions, R&D, at Nisum, a digital services and consulting company. \u201cFortunately, ecommerce sites can make the most of digital word of mouth by [providing] online reviews and responding accordingly.\u201d\n\n\t\n\n\u201cHaving product reviews drives traffic and conversion, [by] up to 44 percent,\u201d says Erik Skurka, vice president of Product at PowerReviews. \u201cShoppers expect unbiased and informative reviews from fellow shoppers to help drive their purchase decisions. Make sure those star ratings snippets are on your category pages, and above the fold on product detail pages to help drive visibility.\u201d\n[ Related: 5 ways ecommerce businesses can improve customer service ]\n6. Your ecommerce site should provide excellent customer service (and not just on the site). \u201cWhen you launch an ecommerce [site], you immediately have a 24x7 global business,\u201d says Alan Berkson, director of Community Outreach, Freshdesk, a customer support software company. And \u201cyour customers will require pre-sale and [post-sale] customer service from you. A critical success factor is setting and managing the expectations for the availability and speed of your responses\u2026 and being prepared to track, manage [and respond to] all inquiries [in a timely fashion].\u201d\n\u201cFocusing on your customers and making sure their expectations are consistently met is critical to your website\u2019s success,\u201d says Buffy Simoni, president, Paper Mart.\u00a0 \u201cFor Paper Mart, that includes being available to our customers through whichever channel they prefer.\u00a0[Whether] it\u2019s though our call center, chat, email or our social media channels, everyone gets the same great service and attention.\u201d Something not just Paper Mart but all good ecommerce companies do.\n\u201cOne essential tool that we use constantly is a chat box,\u201d says Rob Boirun, CEO, Flagtopia.com. \u201cOnce we added this to our ecommerce store we saw a 245 percent increase in sales. What we offer typically needs customization, and by offering an easy entryway to start communication when the customer is needing it, we are now able to provide the expected customer service in real time. [Live chat is] becoming more popular these days and I would suggest that this is a required component going forward.\u201d\n7. Checkout should be fast and easy. \u201cThe more steps it takes for customers to pay, the greater the chance they'll drop out,\u201d says Sajal Agarwal, chief innovation officer,\u00a0Ingenico ePayments. \u201cEcommerce sites should offer a range of solutions to help speed up payments, from one-page checkouts to recurring purchases and the ability to save card details.\u201d\n\u201cShoppers don't always want to create an account, but many ecommerce systems still require consumers to register for one before purchasing,\u201d says Craig Smith, founder & CEO, Trinity Insight, an ecommerce consulting and optimization company.\u00a0To ensure shopping carts aren\u2019t abandoned, \u201cecommerce businesses should [also] have a guest checkout option.\u201d\n[ Related: 12 tips for creating a must-read business blog ]\n8. Your ecommerce site \u2013 and team \u2013 should be social. You may have a fabulous site, but if no one knows about, or is talking about it, it doesn\u2019t matter. That\u2019s why you need to promote your ecommerce business \u2013 and get others to promote it \u2013 on the popular social networks (i.e., Facebook, Twitter, Instagram and Pinterest).\n\u201c[We are on] all the social media platforms where customers could possibly connect to us,\u201d says Daisy Jing, founder & CEO, Banish, a skin care solution company. \u201c[And] we reply [to and] assist them and constantly post [content] to connect with our customers [and] followers [on social media]. We also use these platforms to advertise [and] connect with the influencers [on] each platform to gain more exposure\/potential buyers.\u201d As a result, Banish has attracted many loyal followers.