How To Improve Your Navigation For Better eCommerce UX & UI
Here are some retail and eCommerce use cases familiar to most people.
Brick & Mortar Business, Visit 1: We are visiting the store for the very first time. We wander leisurely to check which section stores what category of items. It takes a good amount of time to discover the desired products. But assistance by sales team and banners help to reduce the overall time.
Brick & Mortar Business, Visit 2: Before this visit, we make the lists of required things and instead of wandering aimlessly in the store, we go to those sections which keep our favorite products. We don’t act like imbeciles who search for the Corn Flakes at the cosmetic section. The effect of assistance by sales team on last visit is reflected on this visit in the form of lesser “product discovery time”.
Online Ecommerce Business, Visit 1, Case 1: We are visiting a website with poor navigating modules for the very first time. We stroll like clueless chickens. We try to refine the items, we scroll endlessly, we get frustrated, and we desert the store.
Online Ecommerce Business, Visit 1, Case 2: We are visiting a website which has excellent navigating modules mounted to its design. Even though it is our first visit, we seamlessly navigate through the website. A navigating module is a kind of sales team which improve our shopping experience.
Online Ecommerce Business, Visit 2, Case 1: Err… no visit found. The previous experience was daunting.
Online Ecommerce Business, Visit 2, Case 2: Since the last journey was phenomenal, we would come with fixed mindsets, dawdle at a brisk pace, discover the products in no time, order, sit back, and wait for the delivery. In addition to this, we would invite all our colleagues and relatives to purchase from the same store.
There can be many things that allow us to have good navigation around the store. But nothing can reach the importance of the design of your website. It could either assist or doom your customers. A major aspect of better usability is the navigation menu. Here is how augmenting good design schemas to your store could lead to better user experience:
Let the Number of Products Decide the Menu Type
The first and the foremost question which torments most of the eCommerce merchants is regarding the usage of the perfect navigation menu. Well, there is no specific answer to this. For some, simple drop-down menus would work marvelously while some would lose the possible conversion due to it. But there’s got to be some pattern by which a merchant could successfully design his store. No single type of navigation component will do for all sites.
One way to decrypt this question is by checking out the total amount of products. A store with less number of products, let’s say 5 pages, can fiddle around single navigation bar. Hidden navigation menus like Hamburger menus can stash a good space for you.
For a big store, you can use multiple bars in the form of flyout or mega menus. Another alternative is to append collapsible menu especially vertical. Vertical menus can stuff more values than horizontal menus in lesser space, and it can easily be pulled up or down from either side.
Use Plain Signifiers and Symbol
It is good to be creatively manipulative but not at a juncture where you have less to make your user understand. Creative experimentation can be really dangerous for your store, especially for your first-time users. Follow the standard trend of using a magnifying glass for the search bar, ellipsis icon for more information, and Hamburger menu to designate the hidden menu.
Use Slide Outs Smartly
Slide out has become a vital and attractive tool for navigation. You can use clickable animations in the store so that there is a visual interpretability without any disrupted transition. The experts believe that using short animations of 200 to 400 ms could make the complete transition process look uninterrupted.
Set Shadows to your Menus
While this has nothing to do with the navigation of the website, the goal of adding shadow to the menus is to present an immersive feel to the customers. Adding shadows to your Menus can differentiate your content from plug-ins and images.
Suggest the Next Navigating Step
The whole idea of having navigation menus on your website is to guide the users. What if you guide them by suggesting what to do next? Did they put the product in the store? Give them a guiding button which could take them to the checkout. This could be really helpful for those users who are unaware of the interface. As a designer, it is your responsibility to eradicate their doubts and guide them at each stage of shopping.
Enable Navigation Through Search History
Web browsing is multi-directional. Search history or recently viewed items could help those customers who need to re-analyze the content or who stepped forward by mistake. The purpose of this navigation recommendation is simple: Let your user skim through the repeated products.
How Advanced Layered Navigation Functionality Solves Major Navigating Issues?
Layered navigation is one of the most prominent extensions of Magento 2. It is believed to be made up of all the necessary extracts which are needed to enhance the shopping experience. Take a close look at its functionality:
It Allows Rating And Review As Filtering Tools
The best way to use rating and review is by making them as separate attributes. Layered navigation allows rating to be used as attributes which can later be devised in the system to filter the products. A user can easily sort the content based on rating and reviews. What could be handier than having a rating as one of the navigating aids which drill down the product search?
It Empowers Stock Level As A Strong Sorting Tool
We rummage all around the store for hours and hours only check that our selected products are out of stock and if there is no progress in the search result, we either feel distressed, imbibe the frustration, and proceed with the search or we abandon the store. Either way, we kill our time. Layered navigation allows customers to filter and sort the products based on their availability. The out of stock products generally stay at the bottom of the page and don’t reflect upfront.
It Helps to Make Price as a Primary Filter
Much like out of stock frustration, high price products can make customers conscious. Layered navigation gives an additional benefit of marking down the lower and upper bound price through dragging and setting the price sliders. The user can manually add the rate range. If the range doesn’t support the content of the store, it will show the error message.
It Permits Multiple-Attributes for Filtering
All the products have attributes. You can easily let your customers navigate to the desired product page by permitting them to filter using multiple-attributes. How can you do that? By using Layered Navigation. This not only improves the overall navigation procedure but also enhances the user experience.
It Licenses Users to Undo the Steps
Using multiple-filter doesn’t warrant the exact search. The navigating process should be able to grant users to backroll the filters added. They should be able to add and remove the filters with a smooth transition.
Anything you do to satisfy your customers will help create a better user experience. Work on product finding and see its effect on user experience. Work on easy navigation, and observe its reflection on user experience. Every step you take to make your customer happy amplifies the user experience.