When we talk about Visual Merchandising, we automatically think of physical stores with elaborately decorated showcases and storefronts and a layout that enhances the consumer’s experience. But, did you know this methodology can be used on e-commerce sites to help products sell themselves through visual stimuli?
Keep on Reading and you’ll see how this is possible by using Online Visual Merchandising (OVM).
What is Online Visual Merchandising?
Online Visual Merchandising is the act of using visual elements to enhance the overall consumer experience in e-commerce stores. In other words, it’s using a visual experience display strategy to, in the end, optimize and enhance conversion rates.
When done correctly, Online Visual Merchandising will:
- Facilitate navigation through the online store;
- Increase user engagement and time spent on site;
- Increase average ticket price;
- Increase conversions.
How does Online Visual Merchandising work on online stores?
There are various techniques that make up an OVM strategy. The main strategies are:
1 – Video is critical
In a research conducted by Wyzow, 76% of companies surveyed said that video helped increase website traffic, and 81% of people surveyed said to have been convinced to purchase a product or service after watching a product video.
Videos are a cornerstone of Online Visual Merchandising because they help consumers visualize the product. And since people tend to absorb video content at a much higher rate, if you wish to increase online sales, you have to put in place a video marketing strategy ASAP!
2 – Disorganization = Chaos
Majority of online shoppers will leave your e-commerce site if they can’t find what they’re looking for within less than one minute. Most people will start their online shopping experience doing a search on your site’s search bar.
To help solve a problem and assist shoppers in finding an item, make sure you optimize your e-commerce search functionality. To do that, use auto-fill functionalities that actually find your products (and of course, make your search bar clearly visible.).
3 – Create engagement with audio
Video content is so important that we’re back on this topic once again. Online Visual Merchandising should also entice all of your consumer’s senses. Videos entice their vision, but they also entice their hearing.
When the audio in your video is enticing, you have a unique possibility of creating a relationship with your consumer that you wouldn’t be able to create with product images alone.
Audio in product videos usually come in the form of music. Here’s a tip: music can trigger emotional responses, therefore, make sure that the music you choose mirrors how you’d like your consumers to feel as they interact with your product.
4 – ALWAYS use high-quality images
In this article, I wrote about CGI, but in a nutshell, the technique consists of creating animated visual content using computer imagery software. It’s the same technique used to create special effects in movies.
It’s highly likely that Computer-Generated Imagery is behind that perfectly clear image and video on the last add you saw online and on that new car commercial you just saw on TV and are now dying to buy.
Important: Make sure you consider all the practical aspects of photography. For example, if high-quality images are not uploaded accordingly, your site will become slow and will greatly affect the user’s experience.
5 – Branding
At physical stores, there are shopping bags and displays with an array of colors, design, and logos. You can create the same effect online through your website design, especially on your product pages. Don’t forget to keep your logo present throughout the consumer’s journey.
An efficient e-commerce store goes way beyond color coordination, text and image positioning. You have to consider an Online Visual Merchandising strategy which includes:
- Product videos
- Engagement using audio
- High-quality images
‘Till next time!