Shoppers will go elsewhere if they cannot locate what they are looking for within milliseconds. That’s why e-merchants keep them engaged by allowing them to browse, buy, and connect.
What is eCommerce Product Discovery?
Product discovery is no longer a new term in the eCommerce industry. Specifically, it refers to how digital shoppers find and explore products on your website. Text, visual search, tailored suggestion carousels, smart merchandising, and even inspiration galleries are various ways to make a holistic journey of discovery. The goal is to present relevant products to each customer at the appropriate time, which will enhance the customer experience as well as boost store conversions.
Some, always, or most of the time, 87.6% of shoppers say they are confronted with an overwhelming number of product options. Consequently, being unable to find preferred items is the top reason for abandoning an eCommerce store without a purchase. Thus, an effective discovery process should be the foundation to solve customers’ pain points.
Modern Product Discovery Journey
Consumers can shop and discover things through a variety of methods, from social media to online marketplaces. They often have up to 4 phases with a brand before making a final purchase decision, according to ChannelSight.
Low Intent Phase
The low intent phase is the first one. Before jumping to transactions, consumers look for some inspiration through mediums like social media, marketplaces, search engines, blogs, TV, or influencers. Social media is the most cited channel when getting product details. Many shoppers also turn to more authentic sources. 41% of them count on bloggers or influencers for purchase ideas.
Shoppers now consider brands as a whole. The product, the experience, the service, the brand story, the values, and other factors all contribute to their overall impression. For example, 73% of global consumers respond that they would change their consumption habits to reduce their environmental footprint. As they become more conscious of what they put in and on their bodies, they are also interested in purchasing and sometimes paying more for products that benefit the environment.
Younger customers, particularly Gen Z, are passionate about their style. They respect brands who recognize and understand the aesthetics they are attempting to achieve. Thus, recommending appropriate items on-site, in marketing emails, and in social ads is a must to win over these consumers. You should also provide deals on items relevant to them so they remain brand loyal in the long run.
Consumers today expect their eCommerce experiences to be as quick and intuitive as their mobile phones. Just one negative experience with your website can negatively impact their perception of your brand. Also, if they move from your store to your app and back, they expect each experience to blend to form a seamless omnichannel journey. To put it simply, they hold brands and retailers to the same standards as tech behemoths.
Why Does eCommerce Product Discovery Matter?
Let’s say you are driving huge traffic to your store via social media, effective email marketing, paid advertising, and influencers. But if they click away in a few seconds, then what was the point? The most effective way is to take them directly to what they want, and this will increase your chances to convert high-intent shoppers.
Likewise, according to Gartner, customer experience drives more than two-thirds of customer loyalty, outperforming both price and brand. Product discovery in eCommerce has a significant impact on brand loyalty. The advantages are too great for online merchants to ignore.
- Meeting your customers' demands for a seamless journey to discover and purchase increases your revenue. It boosts conversions, customer lifetime value (CLTV), and average order value (AOV) by providing a satisfying and intuitive customer experience. Recent research indicated that product discovery can help the brand see 130% higher conversion rates as well as a 2.3% increase in revenue per session.
- Personalized product discovery increases brand loyalty and affinity by making shoppers feel understood and valued. Products that are compatible with your customers' desires and interests generate spontaneous purchases, increasing AOV. Compared to new consumers, current shoppers are 50% more willing to try new items and spend 31% more on average. Also, after a single favorable experience, 77% of customers would suggest a brand to a friend.
- Product discovery gives e-merchants valuable insights. An intensive analysis of what your customers are looking for (like the most entered search terms) allows you to forecast trends, manage inventory, and ultimately make more intelligent and revenue-driven business decisions.
How Brands Can Drive Efficiency of eCommerce Product Discovery
Implementing and optimizing product discovery is a huge subject. However, there are a few basic steps you can take to get your business on the road to generating excellent product discovery.
- Create an engaging homepage: Remember that you only have 15 seconds to impress shoppers. Display collections of popular and trending products, new arrivals, inspiration galleries, and instructional or social content that gently promotes your stuff.
- Make your website simple to navigate and filter-rich: Make it as simple as possible for customers to navigate your site, identify products, and refine their searches. Product filtering should be powerful enough to allow shoppers to overlay selections without disrupting the purchasing experience. A recent study proved that search bars and product filters are the top ways shoppers actively engage when hunting for products.
- AI and ML technologies to level up personalized product discovery: To stay ahead of the competition, make sure you choose the right recommendation engine. It should truly enable tailored experiences based on shoppers’ behavior rather than simply based on their demographics.
- Data analytics: Data allows you to create a full picture of your consumers' wants and intents. It also influences your conclusions about how to improve conversions, CLTV, and AOV. To strengthen the individualized suggestions, you can mix image data with other shopping data. Search data can also be used to improve inventory management and other company activities.
Ready to Drive More Sales with Product Discovery?
To achieve success through eCommerce product discovery, brands must not only meet but also surpass customers’ expectations. Connecting shoppers to the items they are looking for in a convenient, personable, and seamless way will keep your brand top of mind.
Moreover, you can keep an all-encompassing perspective of your consumers’ interactions with the help of reliable technology. It gives you an overview to make strategic decisions that will impact your business and the relationship with customers in the long run.