If you’re reading this blog, it probably means too many users leave your e-commerce website without making a purchase. Even if your site is a roaring success there is always room for improvement. Having worked with dozens of e-commerce businesses in New Zealand and abroad, we know a thing or two about e-commerce marketing. One way to increase sales is by improving your filtering design. We’ll focus on desktop filtering as mobile filters are a different beast completely.

Why are e-commerce filters important?

Too much of a good thing can be bad for user experience (UX). The more options there are, the more time it takes for users to choose. So, to increase conversion, it’s necessary to reduce the number of options. The purpose of website filters is to give users the opportunity to remove unnecessary results, so only what suits their expectations remain. This means a more personalised experience.

Product filters must be functional. They are needed to increase the relevance of the results. If users can easily and quickly navigate your website, Google will appreciate it and make the website more visible.

How to make filters work for you:

1. Choose the best filters location

About 80% of online stores use a sidebar for filtering, so most users are used to seeing it there,  but Baymard recently published an article claiming horizontal filter bars significantly outperform the more traditional left-sided one in terms of convenience and efficiency. This feature is an important part of any e-commerce website and worth paying attention to for improved UX.

2. Choose the best way to present your filters

As for the filters web UI, most e-commerce websites display filters in four main ways:

  • All filter options at once.
  • Adding the scroll feature into each filter category.
  • Showing only the filter headers with a selection option.
  • Truncated filters (displaying a subset of the filters and providing a View More or View All hyperlink to represent the rest of the filter options).

A filter bar should only display fields of high relevance. Not all fields as this overcomplicates things for the user.

3. Interactive filtering

This is when the filter reacts in real-time to each choice and refreshes the page each time. Batch filtering means the page only refreshes and gives the selected results after the user has clicked the Apply button. Interactive filtering requires one less click and is more convenient for the user.

4. Allow multiple selections

Allow users to make several selections in the same category. Although this seems like an obvious feature, only around 30% of e-commerce sites offer this. Filters limited to one option at a time can frustrate customers by limiting their UX.

6. Always return search results

It’s frustrating when the use of filters returns no results. If the value “0” is returned by any filtering criteria, it should be excluded from the list or visualised as inactive.

7. Pay attention to the copy

Simple. Simple. Simple. The simpler the better. Make your copy easy to understand, predictable and free of jargon.

Though filters seem like a small feature in the grand scheme of things on your e-commerce website, they are an integral part of providing a seamless shopping experience to users. They are a standard feature that, done correctly, exclude unnecessary items from large search results. It’s also worth remembering that every improvement you make takes your users one step closer to making a purchase - which should be your number 1 priority.

Get in touch with us today if you want help boosting your bottom line and scaling up your business.

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We found the company friendly, accomodating, and they helped us to develop our knowledge of the business analyticsLance Metz ★★★★★ Sprocket has been an incredible digital marketing partner, helping us grow our monthly turnover. They are extremely helpful and are quick to respond to any needs we may have. I would highly recommend for any company looking to take on a digital transformation journey.Matt Boylan ★★★★★ This is the second time I have used Sprocket Digital in my role as Marketing Manager for small to medium sized businesses. Given our marketing team is very small and we don't have a specific digital marketing resource internally, it gives me peace of mind knowing that all our digital needs are being outsourced to Sprocket. On both occasions of working with Sprocket, the team have very quickly got up to speed on our business. The setup is seamless and my regular meetings with the team help to identify opportunities for us to leverage. The entire team are really knowledgeable and down to earth even though they have some very experienced people working on our account. I would highly recommend Sprocket to any other business who wants expert advice and guidance on their digital marketing with an accessible and down to earth approach.Dylan Carter ★★★★★ Sprocket Digital is the real deal! They have turned our company around in our initial month of working with them and I could not recommend them more.The team is super helpful always making the time to have meetings with us and answer our endless amounts of questions.We are looking forwarded to working with them for the long term!Richie Stott ★★★★★ It has been a seamless transition to Sprocket and they have delivered on the goods. Very happy with the service and results. Our account manager, Kieran is great to deal with.Chris Sinclair ★★★★★ Great team to work with, we've experienced growth from day 1 and we're still going! 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Their professional, transparent, and data-driven approach has rekindled my confidence in the agency model.Josef Arnet ★★★★★ Sprocket Digital has been great to work with and has provided great inside and addition to the digital side of our business (Kitchen Things) their SEO team is fantastic and Harrison their Email marketing specialist is an absolute savant when it comes to knowing how set up email campaigns, templates as well as automatic email flows and the logic required to make them impactful and effective for a business. They always continue to impress with the work they do.Gabi Metz ★★★★★ Working with Sprocket has been so easy! Like a weight has been lifted off our shoulders. And the results so far have been fantastic!Sheree Palmer ★★★★★ Great Team to work with, communication is great and they are actively engaged with working with you.js_loader


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