E-commerce Link: 'Tis the Season to Buy
To overcome these challenges while increasing sales, the merchant must create greater product clarity online, especially on the product detail page. According to Forrester Research's The State of Retailing Online 2008: Merchandising and Web Optimization Report, 90 percent of retailers stated that the product detail page was a top investment priority for the next 12 months. And 85 percent stated improved product content on the product page as a top tactic.
To design a more effective product page for shoppers, follow these tips:
- Develop comprehensive product descriptions.
- Optimize copy specifically for the Web that is simple, succinct and scannable.
- Provide easily accessible service information and links, including in-stock status, product availability dates, shipping and delivery information, and links to product guarantees and return policies.
The best places to apply these ideas are on product pages with high page views and low conversion rates, on products that are performing in other channels but not online, and on pages with expensive, high-consideration products.
3. Reduce ‘One-and-Outs'
One-and-outs happen when shoppers exit a site after visiting just one page. This happens more than you may know. As a percent of all visits, one-and-outs account for close to 38 percent, claims the MarketLive Performance Index (Vol. 5, 2008). The homepage typically accounts for the majority of this and represents about 13 percent of overall one-and-outs.
To improve the engagement of the shopper on the homepage and reduce the one-and-outs, navigation and calls to action should support key user goals of shopping and service. It is also important to create awareness of the breadth and depth of your product offerings on the homepage by exposing subcategories and testing flash merchandising. Flash merchandising is a technique where a single image rotates every few seconds. Flash provides the ability to show different merchandising themes and promotions using the same screen real estate, ultimately giving the merchant the opportunity to appeal to a larger customer base.