Some product pages look like works of art. All the distinct pieces are working together, and somehow everything seems to be right where it belongs.
While on the other hand, some product pages just look like…product pages. Let’s explore the differences between the two, shall we?
Here are the 9 essentials elements you need to consider as a designer to create a high-converting product page. Not just in terms of aesthetics, but also usability from the customer standpoint.
In this article we’re going to review:
- How to trim the unnecessary fat of your product pages
- How to choose only quality photos
- Why including a video will improve your product page drastically
- How to write enticing copy
- Why you should optimize your product page for mobile
- Creating transparent shipping details
- Why product reviews are important
- How to display return policies
- When and where to use promotional tactics
Plus, I’ll show you a few other highly effective techniques to consider when designing product pages.
1. Trim the Fat
A high-converting product page is about one thing: the product. Everything that’s not about the product is just a distraction, and will hinder the customer’s decision-making process about whether to buy.
If you can get rid of it, get rid of it. Here’re some quick tips for trimming the fat:
- Plain backgrounds — On other pages, flamboyant or enriching backgrounds may add a lot to a site, but for product pages, they’re just a diversion. A muted, unobtrusive color keeps the focus on the product. We’d even suggest removing the background of product pictures, so they blend seamlessly into the rest of the page.
- Use hidden menus and dropdowns — Not all product information is relevant to all customers, so tuck specialized content away in a drop-down menu. It’ll still be available for those that want it, but won’t obscure the page for those that don’t.
- Minimal navigation — Your navigation panel should always be as small as possible, but especially on product pages. Minimize it on the entire site for the best results.
Helbak, the site for a Danish ceramist, matches the minimalism of the products with the product page design. The majority of the screen is filled with a vivid product image, with all of the necessary information grouped together, finished with another bold and appealing product image before ending with corporate information.
Everything necessary is there, and the product details are just a click away (with a colored embellishment to show clickability and draw attention). The absence of extras, paired with the abundant negative space, give the page a relaxed, easy-to-understand appeal.Everything that’s not about the product is just a distraction, and will hinder the customer’s decision-making process about whether to buy. Click To Tweet
2. Top Quality Images
Video Statistics: The Marketer’s Summary 2016 confirmed that 92.6% of online shoppers say visuals are the most influential factor affecting purchase decisions. Customers prefer to see and touch products in person, and high-quality images are the closest you can get to bringing your online store to life.#Video #Statistics: The Marketer’s Summary 2016 confirmed that 92.6% of online shoppers says visuals are the most influential factor affecting purchase decisions. Click To Tweet
If you want your visual style to stay ahead of the curve, read our previous article on 9 innovative ways to improve your product photos, including eyeless models and secondary objects. If you want more traditional advice, a failsafe takeaway that applies to all product photos is “bigger is better”.
The apparel store Reformation rightly puts a high priority on visuals, as you can see by the amount of screen real estate they use. The higher quality images aren’t just for looks: they also give users a better understanding of how the clothes feel to wear, both in material and fit.
3. Include a Video
Sometimes a photograph just doesn’t do the product justice. Thanks to faster Internet speeds, videos are quickly gaining steam as the new sales booster, and for good reasons. Just read these figures from the Video Statistics: The Marketer’s Summary 2016:
- Video viewers are 1.7x more likely to buy.
- Up to 4x as many shoppers prefer product videos to the text description.
- Sites with video on most product pages had a 68% higher average order value than sites with video on a few product pages.
- When researching a purchase decision, 80% of millennials consider video content.
- 7 out of 10 millennials are likely to watch a company video when online shopping.
And that doesn’t even take into account the SEO benefits. Videos improve a product’s appearance on the SERP simply because there’s less competition for videos.
For familiarizing the shopper with the product, videos take it a step further than product pictures. They display the product “in action,” with the added benefit of visualizing instructions on use that will both address the shopper’s worries and entice them to buy.#Videos improve a product’s appearance on the #SERP simply because there’s less competition for videos. Click To Tweet
“Shower Jelly,” a never-before-seen product from cosmetic company LUSH, is so new and different, it’s flat out confusing. The auto-playing video hero background answers all questions right from the start, without the users even having to ask.
4. Enticing Copy
Product descriptions may be losing some of their significance to visuals, but they’re still a necessary component. The decreasing pressure on the copy just frees it up to be more innovative.
Product page copy works best when it appeals to the user’s emotions. Technical details are best listed in chart form, but the product description has the literary potential to engage the user’s imagination while describing the details. Try using the area to tell a story — or a joke.
Source: Best Made CompanyProduct page copy works best when it appeals to the user’s emotions. Click To Tweet
Best Made Company takes a traditional clothing catalog approach that nears the territory of J. Peterman.
Source: Best Made Company
Their ‘Story’ illustrates how the document case holds up for archaeologists, the types of documents and tools it could hold, how it was made, the materials, and even the tale of the company that made it. Like any good sales copy, it informs in an entertaining way: with a personal touch, conversational tone, and an appetizing word choice.
5. Mobile Optimized
Mobile shopping is not optional — in fact, Anna Dahlström, the GeekGirl, cited that 90% of users start a task on one device and finish it on another. That means your mobile product page needs to be consistent with the desktop version, and capable of saving progress for a seamless transition from one device to the next.
Source: Gitman Bros. (Desktop)90% of users start a task on one device and finish it on another. Click To Tweet
The Awwward-winning site Gitman Bros. keeps their mobile experience as close to the desktop experience as possible:
Source: Gitman Bros. (Mobile)
The same format is used, where the relevant user actions are displayed on the first screen, with the product description, features, video, and related items available on the scroll. Even the customer service tab remains in the bottom-right corner.
6. Transparent Shipping Details
Don’t underestimate shipping. An Econsultancy study revealed that 74% of shoppers will abandon a purchase if the shipping is too high while a comScore study showed that 72% of shoppers value free shipping so much, they’ll leave a site that doesn’t offer it for one that does.
High-converting product pages show their shipping details right up front to ensure there are no surprises later. Of course, this requires optimizing your shipping options so that you have something worth displaying.
The best product pages show their shipping details right up front to ensure there are no surprises later. Click To Tweet
The shipping details don’t need to be garish or take up too much room. It’s enough that they’re present in a highly visible area. Harry’s keeps their page well-organized, with shipping details clearly presented at the top, but in grey to give more prominence to more important details. At the bottom, before the user adds the product to the cart, there’s a small notice about ground shipping.
7. Show Reviews/Ratings
The concept of social proof sums up the phenomenon that people are influenced by the opinions of others. “If ________________ (my friend, a successful company, the sports hero I want to be like) does it, then so will I.”
While social media recognition is a great help, for product pages the best social proof is reviews and ratings. In fact, 63% of customers say they’re more likely to shop from a site with ratings and reviews.
It’s one thing when you’re telling shoppers how great your product is, but there’s a huge leap in credibility when other actual shoppers do it. These are people with no hidden motives – they were in the same place once, too.
Keep in mind that the option to write a review on the product page may come in handy, but is entirely optional. A better time to collect a review is after the sale, with a personalized message – before, it’s just an extra visual element.
A better time to collect a review is after the sale, with a personalized message — before, it’s just an extra visual element. Click To Tweet
Modcloth shows its products’ star rating right next to the price at the top, along with all the other need-to-know information. For more details from other customers, the shopper has only to scroll down for the site’s in-depth review system.
Along with the other star rating and written review options, Modcloth offers a unique but helpful feature for gauging the clothing’s feel. “Fit” and “Quality” are given two different rating metrics, and the reviewer’s profile includes their height and bust size so that shoppers can compare with similar body types. This trims out reviews that aren’t relevant to certain shoppers.
Also, notice the “Helpful” and “Inappropriate” tag options. This is still the Wild, Wild Web, so it’s nice to have a check system.
8. Reassure Shoppers About Returns
Trueship’s “Ecommerce Returns Statistics” show the somewhat surprising significance of return policies for online shopping, including that 66% of online shoppers read the return information. As is the nature of buying a product you’ve never seen or touched in person, online shoppers are more suspicious, and a clear and agreeable return policy puts them at ease.
At the bottom of every Zappos page is all the information to reassure the shopper and secure their trust, including a notification about their free return policy.
9. Don’t Be Shy About Deals
The gladiatorial arena of eCommerce is not the place to be modest. If you’re offering the shoppers an advantage that your competitors aren’t, say it loud and proud.
Pointing out why it’s in the shopper’s best interest to buy with you is a classic sales tactic. This involves:
- Prominently displaying items with sales, even having an entire “on sale” section.
- Crossing out the original price, even calculating and displaying the savings.
- Mentioning a product is only available on your site.
- Any special or shipping deals activated by the product
- Relevant coupon codes the user may have missed.
On a page that uses mainly blacks and whites, the crossed out the original price in red holds special meaning. Like other sites, AYR uses the attention-grabbing color to highlight the deals, but unlike other sites, AYR goes above and beyond in the drop-down for color selection…
The sale status is displayed next to all alternative options. Even when the user is on a product page where the item is not on sale.
Additional Techniques to Create High-Converting Product Pages
New, more efficient product page techniques are cropping up every day, so here are some additional techniques that are just as helpful:
“The sale ends in…” Nothing like a ticking clock to light a fire under the shopper and encourage a purchase. Bonus points if you have a timer counting down seconds in real time.“The sale ends in…” Nothing like a ticking clock to light a fire under the shopper and encourage a purchase. Click To Tweet
Even if the shopper doesn’t have any questions, a customer support option is still appreciated. As we mentioned in our previous article deconstructing three successful online checkouts, you can add a personal touch to your customer support by giving it a human name, like “Melissa.” The Coffee Supreme Shop has multiple options: a “Contact us” tab, and a human-ish “Mr. Woodward” to give personalized recommendations.
Source: Coffee Supreme Shop
Wishlists enable “window shopping” for online markets, but also increase the likelihood of purchases later. Include an “Add to…” option on the product page so the shopper knows the feature is there.
If you’re testing reveals that users are navigating by category instead of direct search, a breadcrumb trail lets them return to their desired category without the occasionally problematic browser back-button.
Options for Additional Sales
As we explained in our earlier article on cross-selling and up-selling tactics, the product page can be used as advertisement space for additional or better sales (as long as it doesn’t make the screen appear cluttered. Amazon is the king, with both “Frequently Bought Together” and “Customers Who Bought This Item Also Bought” bars.
Don’t frustrate your users by waiting until checkout to say you’re out of stock. Make sure you show a product is available or out of stock prominently, almost immediately. If an item is out of stock, it’s best to mention it early, even on the navigation page.
The goal of your product page is to simulate an actual inspection of the product as one would do in a brick-and-mortar store. While a lot of the experience is lost online, there’s plenty of tactics to make up for it that only e-stores can do. Build your product page smartly to take the stress out of online shopping and make it fun again.
Share your favorite product pages with us in the comments below or check out 5 other killer tips to design a product page that boosts conversions.