The Seven Cs

7 Cs Website design elements that drive customer traffic

Dr. Jill Novak, University of Phoenix, Texas A&M University

There are seven design elements - 7Cs - that should be considered when creating a website intended for commerce and sales. Customers shop online for several reasons; the most important are the convenience, cost, large selection and the allure of control over their purchases. Customers can easily shop around from anywhere they have an Internet connection; this gives companies an even greater imperative to create a website that will drive traffic to their website, appeal to their target markets, and create a lasting experience that will create return customers.

  • Context : A website's layout and overall visual design needs to be uncluttered, easy to read and navigate, the color scheme needs to be appropriate for the marketing design. Having some white space will also aid in the overall design and readability.
  • Commerce : If the website is intended for commercial transactions, then it has to be safe and the fact that is has been made safe must be communicated to the customer, most websites use a "lock" symbol in the corner to indicate that it has been encrypted.
  • Connection : Any links that lead the customer away from the website.
  • Communication : How the company talks to its customers ; this can be done through signing up for special offers, email newsletters, contests, surveys, live chat with company representatives, and company contact information.
  • Content : The text, graphics, sound, music, and/or videos that are presented.
  • Community : The website may allow interaction between customers through message boards and live chat.
  • Customization : Companies can allow customers to personalize aspects of the website or it may tailor itself to different users, for example having different colors and graphics for people who speak different languages.

Activity--Ecotourism and Attracting A Customer Base.

"[Ecotourism]...is environmentally responsible travel and visitation to relatively undisturbed natural areas, in order to enjoy and appreciate nature (and any accompanying cultural features - both past and present) that promotes conservation, has low negative visitor impact, and provides for beneficially active socio-economic involvement of local populations."

Activity.

Design your own Ecotourist Resort

1. Choose a destination. Where will your resort will be located? Why this place? How will your resort make as limited an impact as possible on the site? How will energy be provided for the site? What are some conservation measures your site will use?

2. Choose an animal you want to highlight at your destination. Perform research about your chosen animal, including their habitat, physical characteristics, and causes of death, as well as efforts to protect them.

3. Decide who is your target market (or markets), be as specific as possible!

4. How will the local community benefit from your resort?

5. Create an explanation of your website that will include all of the design elements that drive customer experience. (you do not have to create an actual website)

6. Get out some paper and draw a map of what your destination site will look like and what amenities you will be including. What are some of the activities your visitors can partake in and how do these relate to your eco-mission?

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