In today’s digital world, it is getting increasingly difficult to attract new customers to your online store considering the speed at which large eCommerce competitors such as Amazon, Walmart, Alibaba, Wayfar and more are expanding their online operations. Magento is a great platform to build a highly effective and competitive online store, however, the default platform alone will not be enough to make your eCommerce website competitive online.

One of the most important moments during an online shopping experience is the customer’s ability to find what they are looking for quickly and without delays. This will greatly influence the customer’s mood and desire to spend money on your website. This is where filtering comes into play. If you look at major eCommerce websites, such as Amazon and Walmart.com, that do billions of dollars in online sales every year, you will notice they have extensive filtration capabilities on their website in the left hand sidebar.

Walmart Sidebar Filtering

You will notice with both Amazon and Walmart, as well as many other large eCommerce sites, that when you click on one of the filters it will reload the page and bring up new products on the category page you are looking at that meet the filtered criteria. One of the great things about Magento is the ability to implement Ajax technology, which allows you to update the category page results with the filtered product results without page reloading. This reduces the time a customer must spend searching and filtering for the appropriate things they want to buy from your eCommerce website. This seemingly minor improvement to the customer experience can go a long way towards attracting and retaining online customers.

Magento Layered Navigation is the out of the box tool which allows your customers to filter products on the left hand side bar, however, it will not come with Ajax technology by default. You must have your categories set to anchor and attributes set to layered navigation, as well as have the appropriate attribute and product data in place for your filters to work properly.

The most efficient and cost effective method to get Ajax filtering on your Magento store is to install third party Ajax filtering extensions, for example, GoMage Advanced Navigation or Layered Navigation – AJAX custom filters. Both extensions are built by credible Magento technology partners and will get Ajax filtering technology working on your Magento store for a fraction of what it would cost a Magento developer to implement and build from scratch. With major eCommerce competitors constantly improving their eCommerce operations and online customer experience due to loaded pockets, Ajax filtering is a great way to quickly implement a cost effective feature that can help propel you ahead of major online competitors with your Magento store.

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