Fact is, the online merchandising space is still one yet to be fully explored. For this reason, we’re still far from reaching the full potential within the field making it quite an exciting time for those budding online retailers out there. As we learn more about the practice of online merchandising, the ins and outs, what works, what doesn’t and how  we can optimise our merchandising to the full potential, we learn, develop, hone and build up a wide range of best practices and handy tips for the most successful online merchandising techniques out there. Keep reading to find out some top online merchandising tips from Locayta.

The problem…

Despite the progress made within the online retail arena, we still find that a huge 97% of online shoppers abandon a site on their first visit without making  a purchase. On top of this, it’s been revealed that the vast majority of online shoppers will only look at the first two search results pages before abandoning or redefining their search. It’s such factors that give us motivation in the search for more efficient, productive and effective online merchandising in order to push our eCommerce businesses forward. So what can be done?

Visual Merchandising:

It can be hard to replicate the physical practice of visual merchandising online, that usually occurs within stores, but the concept remains the same; creating engaging product displays to enhance and develop tempting and enticing product offers. In the initial stages of online retail, this presented a real problem for eCommerce merchants, however since then, technologies have been able to overcome such restrictions, and Visual Merchandising tools from Locayta can help. Enabling a flexible, yet highly powerful element of control over your product display is key here. The ability to manipulate and manage the sequencing of your products within category pages and search results is invaluable when it comes to driving those key measurable elements such as conversion rates and basket order values. In order to use such control to its maximum effectiveness, both dynamic and manual configuration methods are useful here; being able to programme the display of products according to your own metric drivers is a big advantage, presenting the appropriate products based on elements chosen by you (for example, newest in stock). Visual Merchandising remains to be one of the most effective elements of online merchandising, and as well as enhancing user experience, its been proven to significantly increase online sales, enhancing the viability of your online offer.

Display Advertising:

When it comes to figuring out how best to manage your display advertising, it pays to be well informed about the possibilities out there. Whatever your format, knowing what’s out there technologically, can really help you get the most out of display advertising options rather than opting for the first thing that comes along. Too much static un-targeted advertising can clutter websites, devalue your brand and result in poor performance in terms of conversions and click through rates. Instead, it’s essential to ensure your display advertising targets specific customers with relevant content. Recent developments have started to work on such a basis providing individually targeted advertising for each page view, and Locayta’s Display Advertising tools is one of them. It’s only logical that your display advertising takes lead from user behaviour seen on site, and the ability to track, learn and use such information is essential for enhancing the success of your display advertising. Analysing the content of each page within your site allows you to discover which display advertising would be relevant. Following this, new technologies are able to match the user activity data to the page analysis, and suggests display adverts that would be a good match for that users activity. This enables you to optimise your online inventory in a time and resource saving fashion.

eCommerce Search:

Another common problem when it comes to online merchandising is internal site search; technological developments are consistently occurring within this specific space, which results in constant updates, changes and developments to on-site search and practice. This presents a real problem when it comes to ensuring your on-site search is performing at it’s maximum and not resulting in lost customers. To avoid this common online merchandising downfall, Locayta have developed a unique search that learns. It’s beneficial to ensure your internal site search is dynamic in this way, that it is able to develop and programme it’s own search results in accordance to what works well for your customers. Learning from user behaviour, search functionalities are able to dynamically update results to deliver optimum options to significantly increase purchase probability. Advanced search functionalities will also allow you to manipulate results using your own metrics for your own benefit, include fail safe spell correction and auto complete as well as an intuitive guided navigation framework.

Moving forwards…

Becoming fully aware of all the new developments, practices and happenings within the ever-changing online merchandising arena is no mean feat, however taking guidance from those pioneering the space is always a good way to go. The benefits from companies such as Locayta are far and wide and go way beyond the financials; the integrated easy to use platform allows for the best most progressive features out there in the market, increased efficiency and time effectiveness for your online merchandising, a flexible pricing model and a positive effect on conversion rates, average order values, average revenue per visit, higher retention rates, and increased customer satisfaction with reduced clicks to purchase.