Visual experience matters: how product findability affects the sales
You may have the best goods available and offer the lowest prices, but your sales are stuck on zero point. No one will buy the best product if one simply cannot find it behind tons of more easy accessible options. The key to selling an item is the way you suggest to buy it. In this article you will learn how to reduce the bounce rate and increase sales using visual sorting.
Sorting the goods in categories is a key parameter of an online store. Being sorted right, the product will attract the attention of the customer who will end up buying it. But placement in the right category isn’t a magic pill for a higher conversion rate. Complete conversion is a combination of factors.
After the structure of the catalogue was created it seems that the store is ready to welcome its first customers, but is it so? The navigation system which seems obvious and user-friendly from the inside, may be tricky for potential users and lead them nowhere close to making a purchase from you. To prevent that from happening, you can take care of your customers and make sure your product sorting tools are ready to be of any help.
What really matters in visual sorting?
There’s a number of online store navigation features that can sufficiently affect the customer experience. The misuse of product sorting or its complete absence may result in customers leaving forever. However, put into practice correctly, site navigation can change conversion rates to the better. Significant points of the visual sorting for your store are:
- Site search
- Friendly URLs
- Product filtering
- New arrivals, Bestsellers, Discounts, Featured products
- Related products & Recently viewed products
- Compared products
Let’s take a more detailed look at every navigation element and its possible implementations.
About 30% of online store users prefer embed site search to surfing the catalogue to find the item they need. A well-run search is expected to make the way to the basket shorter. That is why customers who are determined to buy something are more likely to choose the search option.
Usually more specific search enquiries come from people in late-stage buying mode, and here is where autosuggestions come into play. 25% of site visitors will trust them and click right away.
What is more, the search bar of your store is a valuable and reliable source of statistics for the most viewed or purchased items. Even if zero results are found for some enquiries, this information can still contribute to fixing the search problems and understanding what is missing from the product range your store provides.
Friendly URLs is a web address that is easy to read and describes the contents of the page.
The clearer the site structure is, the easier it is for the customers to know where they are in the store. Seeing a legible link preview, a customer can expect where the link will take him. This link type makes the navigation easier, because the user sees the whole way that leads to a specific product.
Online stores with many level hierarchy are bound to have navigation trails where a customer can easily go missing. The only way to keep the customer on track is to assist them on the way to their purchasing destination. Perfectly arranged navigation combined with friendly URLs firstly gets the customers to visit your online store, secondly gives them the correlation between their current location on the website and higher level pages. If the viewed item is not what the customer was looking for, the chances are high they go back to one of the previous steps to browse more if they have such an option in front of their eyes. This is why hierarchy based breadcrumbs are proven to reduce bounce rate. Visualising all the steps that have been done reduce user anxiety and encourage to finish the process.
There are no reasons why you shouldn’t use breadcrumbs if you sell more than one type of items. But there are a few tips how not to make breadcrumbs useless:
- Users expect breadcrumbs to be placed on the top. They are easier to find when placed above the content.
- Last items do not need hyperlinks. A link to the same page the customer may be very confusing.
- Full page titles in navigation give more context. It keeps customers focused on what they are looking for.
Only 16% of ecommerce websites provide their customers with quite good filtering experience. This is due to lack of specific user-oriented types of filters. General attributes like price, rating, brand are not working anymore for categories that include lots of products distinguished by a single feature. There are no specific instructions or exact numbers for the filters to make it perfect. Product discoverability depends on how you treat the product options you have. Make the most useful filters, not the most common ones.
Aside from typical size and color options, include category-specific and theme-based filters according to product’s usability. That makes filter selection more obvious and assures the customer you know what you sell.
There are a few simple filter improvements that can boost your conversion rates.
- Keep your filters short. If there are too many options to be included, show only the most popular values and truncate the rest.
- Make filtering obvious. The filters applied and the number of options available should be clearly indicated.
- Hide non-existent filter options. Never deceive your customer with false expectations by simply excluding the matches that don’t exist in your product range.
- Don’t neglect mobile filters. Take care of the customers who browse from mobile and help them to buy from you by adjusting the filters for effortless mobile use.
New arrivals, Bestsellers, Discounts, Featured products
People like to browse preselected categories as it saves their time and offers the best options. New arrivals, discounted items and featured product sections can tell new customer a lot about whether your product range corresponds to their shopping needs. You need to choose the items to display carefully. Once a tempting offer strikes the eye of a wandering site visitor, they are most likely going to click it. If the offer is convincing enough, it can encourage the most indecisive customer to consider a purchase.
There are multiple cross-selling options to drive up sales. The more you can implement in your store, the better. The most common ones are most viewed and bestseller items.
However, the variations are numerous, and you can try different approaches to the needs and wants of the customer. You can use Most Viewed extension for Magento 2 to drive your customers to more purchases. Also check out Most Wishful, Recently Sold and Random Product widgets to boost the interest of your audience to the items that someone has already enjoyed. It always feels nice to know that your interests are taken into account and creates more positive perception of the company.
Related products & Recently viewed products
It is always profitable to sell one item more than was intended. If you already got a customer interested and they are exploring the product page, why not to offer them something that can make his overall purchase a more happy experience? Search history of a specific customer can tell you a lot about what they like. Therefore you can offer them a variety of complementary items which won’t make a huge difference for their order total, but will positively influence your revenue.
Customer preferences are better shaped naturally rather than being based solely on the assumptions of the shop owner. Over time you can see what your customers prefer to buy together, and that will help to improve the quality of recommendations and create product bundles. This works especially good with larger stores, where items from different categories can make a perfect match.
Personalized recommendations are a possibility to study user behaviour. They provide you with a better insight on customer preferences and motives. Options that usually assist in upselling are related or similar items and recently viewed products.
Nevertheless, right time and place matter for a suggestion. People don’t enjoy piles of products shoved into their faces before they choose something, as well as hidden pre-selected options at the checkout. The main goal of recommendations is to help a customer to make a decision, not to make it for them.
94% of the customers invest time in comparing goods online to find the best quality-price ratio before making a purchase, and about 60% expect you to have some kind of a comparison tool in your store.
People like information to be sorted visually and the key points highlighted, because seeing the obvious advantages benefits to the making of the final decision.
Comparison shopping is an exclusive feature of online shopping that can be visually implemented and allows customers to have a vivid comparison of items.
You can help your customers to decide on your product with a credible comparison tool. First of all, make the compare option easy to use. What works best:
- Make compare button obvious.
- Provide grids and list options to display compared items.
- Provide ratings and reviews for selected products.
- Standardize and color code similar product features to improve information scannability.
There is a lot of possibilities to enhance your store usability by paying attention to details. You can analyze what visual sorting options will work best for the type of products you sell and apply them reasonably.
For the most part, people like the feeling of buying things, but hardly anyone likes being aggressively sold to. Making visual sorting of your store more customer-oriented than product-oriented will not only benefit your revenue, but also make your customers happier. Looking forward for the sales growth won’t be long after making your customers a priority.
Check Neklo Visual Sorting by Drag and Drop extension for more comfortable editing and sorting of category pages