5 Secrets to optimizing your product page
5 Secrets to optimizing your product page.
Before providing some tricks on how to optimize a product, it is important to clearly understand what it means to be user-centric. Being user-centric means designing, planning or creating any product, service or experience where you focus on the real needs of users, understanding frustrations and sympathizing impartially with users.
1 - Collect user feedback and collect qualified data
The most important trick to optimizing any product page or any product in general is to collect qualitative information from users or customers.
To arrive at the best optimization solutions, you really need to understand and get to know your target audience in a more inclusive and unbiased way, based on facts and without assumptions. Although quantitative data collected from analytics such as demographics, user trends, and others based on secondary research can help bring a good idea to find problems within any product, it may not always provide all the answers.
A crucial mistake is to rely on the implicit assumptions and biases of others. You must always remember that all users have different personalities, traits, physical and mental abilities, cultures, economic situations, and digital knowledge.
Surveys and feedback forms are the number one weapon for gathering qualitative information. However, what exactly should you be concerned with to obtain valuable qualitative data and identify problems for optimization? Below are the top 4 qualitative metrics to monitor:
- Customer Satisfaction (CSAT): How satisfied are users with the overall shopping experience? This data is usually collected after purchase through forms in which users are asked to rate the experience from 1 to 5.
- Emotional or Star rating: While the CSAT gives you an overview of a linear shopping experience, the star rating captures the overall mood of a user. This can be done at different points on the Web site and sometimes even using emoji with values from 1 to 5. The most common question might be "How would you rate your experience on our Web site (or app) today?"
- Customer effort score (CES): This is a very important metric that helps measure usability within a Web site or product page within a single activity. This metric indicates the effort or difficulty required for users to perform a task or arrive at a desired result. CES can be requested at the end of a purchase with a rate experience from 1 to 5, accompanied by an optional comments section. CES focuses on individual actions or activities, such as "how easy was it to add items to the cart" or "how easy was it to search for a product with filters?" CES is a very strong metric that helps identify the difficulty of the action and get feedback to identify problems. Why is it good to track CES? Well, according to the Harvard Business Review in 2020, 94 percent of customers reporting low engagement would repurchase products from the company while 88 percent would spend more.
- Net promoter score (NPS): "How likely are you to recommend service or company X based on your visit today?" NPS is usually a metric of the relationship between users and the company and can help you understand if you need to build loyalty and look for areas to improve to get returning customers. This is generally rated from 1-10, where scores of 1-6 are detractors, 7-8 passive and 9-10 promoters. The formula for your NPS is (% promoter) - (% detractors), if the result is greater than 0 then this is a positive NPS.
Sympathizing and listening to your customers without falling into deviant assumptions is the number one trick to help you optimize any product page to its full potential while remaining customer-centric. The data gathered from this first trick comes in support of all the others.
These are some of the best feedback tools for collecting these metrics: Hotjar, SurveyMonkey, Usertesting, Usabilla, Crazy egg.
2 - Monitor site speed
In addition to focusing on user experience, speed is always the key to determining success on a product page. People hate waiting. And waiting for clunky pages to load brings a high level of frustration to users. Frustration will not only generate a low emotional rate, but also create impatience that will likewise negatively affect the overall shopping experience.
Several studies conducted by Google and other specialists have suggested that 0 to 2 seconds is the ideal page load time to increase quality score and user satisfaction.
However, how could you increase the speed of product pages to get better results? These are some secrets for doing so:
- Abandon over-designed pages and keep things simpler. The fewer components and elements, the less time will be spent loading. Always consider all kinds of connessio speeds that each user might have, so if you've done a good level of analysis, you can find out what browsers your users are using, their Internet connection, and even how much loading time each of them is spending. Knowing this will help you decide on good layouts and simple, lightweight designs.
- Optimize all images. As simple as it is, make sure your product images are set up in the right format and with different loading options, from low resolution to high resolution.
- Reduce redirects: several reasons to reduce or even avoid them. First, redirects require more server responses and can increase the amount of time it takes for pages to load completely. Second, come on--redirects are frustrating, and most users agree that it is frustrating and annoying.
- Use a fast hosting provider: if the hosting provider is slow, there won't be much you can do. So be sure to find a fast provider, especially one that has experience in e-commerce.
Here are some supporting charts and source studies that show that speed is a great optimizer for product pages and for all sites in general:
3 - Monitor navigation
This is one area where many things could be taken for granted, especially if there is not a good deal of qualitative research or user testing.
Building intuitive pages and websites is a good example of the importance of sympathizing with users and showing your user-centric instead of product-based approach.
An intuitive site is one that any user can easily navigate, read, and complete tasks without hassle or assistance. But how to design a site with the user in mind in an intuitive way? There are two main points:
- Be creative but not overly creative: If I asked you how would you open the water in a sink? Or open a door? Or make a phone call? I would immediately bet that some actions come to mind such as turning a sink handle, pulling a door handle, or dialing numbers. These are actions that are already set in our brains and we do them without thinking. However, there is always the risk of trying to reinvent the wheel. Introducing new features or behaviors can be risky, especially if you are not one of the major technology companies like Google or Microsoft who are always trying to introduce "new wheels" . If you can, avoid strange behaviors and use navigation methods or layouts that users can recognize.
- Distinguish desktop from mobile: Have you ever heard of the iconic phrase "build for mobile first"? This works because it is often more difficult to translate features from desktop to mobile than from mobile to desktop. In addition, there are other aspects and rules to follow when building a site for mobile. The site must be fully responsive (responsive), which means that layouts that are multi-column on desktop, should transform to single-column layouts that have clear intuitive readability and interaction for mobile devices. Pages are often simplified for mobile devices, with fewer actions per screen so that things can always be clear and simple. Should you always be Mobile First? Depending on your target audience, a good check on your analytics should tell you where most of your traffic is coming from and dedicate you to providing the best experience on that device. However, keep in mind that we are in the era of pushing M-commerce. Some statistical sources that verify that M-commerce is growing every day:
However, secondary research of common trends and understanding users with feedback will give you the perfect guide on how to create intuitive experiences.
4 - Yes clear, simple and informative
Now the following trick requires fewer metrics but more honesty. Whatever you promote and sell, ALWAYS BE HONEST. In other words, avoid all kinds of deceptive schemes such as hiding crucial information, clicking, or intentionally confusing users. Instead, be clear about what is being promoted or listed and NEVER hide costs! It should come as no surprise that if you want to maintain high credibility, all information and costs should be transparent. Let's look at this in detail:
- Always be honest: avoid all kinds of deceptive schemes such as clickbait, disguised advertising, forced continuity, spam, hidden costs, misdirection, price avoidance comparison, cockroach motels, and shopping cart sneaking. All these should be avoided at all costs.
- Clear titles - This is simple, a very clear and concise title of the product being offered. Not verbose. No need to be overly descriptive. (Unless SEO is what you are aiming for).
- Readable and uncluttered content: make sure that the entire content (title, images, pricing, discounts, taxes, shipping, etc.) is clearly visible and organized so that users can scan the page without hassle. Also, consider a content layout that should optimize scanning. Improving this will help users make quick decisions and increase their chances of purchasing a product.
- Make it simple but informative - Just as Colin Chapman said, "Simplify, then add lightness." Descriptions should be well written, not long-winded or confusing. Be sure to reread everything so that the details of the product or service are clear to all types of users. This is where it comes in handy to know your target audience very well, especially demographics. If there is an understanding that they are multilingual, add several language options. Also, keep in mind the use of slang that is easily understood by all.
- Good use of images - In addition to optimizing images for fast loading, they should be optimized for users' view, which means they should be easily understandable. Try to provide images of the product alone without distractors so that users can know what they are buying. Also provide zoom in and different angles. Consider that users cannot physically see the products before they buy them, so do your best to provide as many images as possible so that users can get a good idea of the product. Nowadays, we have new technologies that can create 3D images in which a user can interact and rotate them.
- Informative videos to answer questions: sometimes videos can provide more information than images alone. If possible, try to display the product, its functions, and even add voice explanations of how it works or how to use it.
- Clear call to action - It is suggested that CTAs or calls to action be short and simple. It is also suggested to use a single action within a CTA phrase, such as "Buy it now" or "Add to cart." Be careful about creating confusing CTAs or intentionally misleading users with an action that is not what they expect. For example, a CTA that says "Add to Cart" and then goes straight to asking users for their payment information without even sending them to the cart first to review the product.This may seem simple and obvious, but it is often underestimated. The trick is to always be honest and study exactly who your target audience is, so you can clearly provide the right information your users need.
5- Show user reviews and interact with them
No matter how perfect and clear the information and descriptions you can provide, and all the pictures and videos to show, many users will always have doubts and questions. Product reviews from other customers or experts will provide additional support for the sites and new information.
Sometimes user reviews and testimonials from other people who have purchased the product can also help reduce anxiety and even increase sales of certain products. There are times when thanks to a review you can quickly answer a question that other users might have as well. In addition, reviews and other human interactions increase the feeling of unification, so users do not feel alone and increase the chances of completing a sale. However, the fear of negative reviews and a potential drop in sales remains understood. No matter, always let users review,either positively or negatively.
There have been several studies that can show that many users tend to skip negative reviews first and view positive ones. Also, it has been shown that many users prefer to skip all reviews. The problem is not to be biased and expect negative reviews to affect sales. Sometimes there might be a chance that a negative review could increase a sale. It all depends on what is considered negative.
Another benefit of reviews is that they help increase customer trust and thus increase NPS (net promoter score). There may be instances of users fearing that the reviews are true, but fortunately there are services that can help verify that these reviews are certified and real (ex: Trustpilot)
Moreover, it is not only quite easy to post all kinds of reviews, but also to interact with them. Interacting with your customers can create bonds and increase customer satisfaction and experience. There have also been several studies showing that "companies that respond to reviews win more customers" Source chart:
Another source of support showing that reviews are useful for increasing sales and optimization: https://www.abtasty.com/blog/customer-reviews-grow-sales/
Optimizing each product page can be done in different ways and with more in-depth suggestions in addition to those mentioned above. However, all of these will always have something in common. The most important trick of all is to be open-minded and non-biased. Really get to know the target audience, sympathize with them, study their needs, goals, and values, interact with them, listen to them, and, in general, ALWAYS run user tests.
The closer you get to your customers and begin to see them as human beings with needs rather, the more you will see sales increase. Only then will come better solutions to optimize your product page, create qualified leads and have a successful business.
Optimizing your product page is an investment and an ongoing process that allows you to maximize your revenue. Especially now with the high cost of campaigns and declining effectiveness, it is imperative to optimize other factors as well. Not taking care of UX can result in a significant loss of revenue. This is demonstrated by Forrester's June 2013 "Business Impact of Customer Experience" research, in which it was estimated that having a good user experience results in savings and increased revenue, while a bad user experience can have a serious impact on sales, satisfaction and costs.