Online shoppers rank clear product images and prompt site search as among the most important features for e-commerce sites, according to a survey of 1,600 web shoppers conducted by Limelight Networks Inc., which is a content delivery network that focuses on speeding delivery of content.
Limelight asked survey respondents to rank e-commerce site features that would encourage purchases and repeat visits.
Also ranking at the top were advanced product viewing capabilities—for instance, 360-degree views, different colors on the product image and zoom—and the ability to customize products online. Online shoppers also like product reviews from other customers, and sites that not only remember an individual shopper, but also retain billing and shipping information.
The most frequent shoppers value advanced features the most. The survey found that 94% of shoppers who shop online more than once a month consider clear photos of products to be important, compared with 84% of shoppers who shop online no more than once a month. 46% of those who shop online more than once a month say video demonstrations of products in use are important, compared with 30% of less frequent shoppers.
In a related finding, 49% of frequent online shoppers say videos that demonstrate how to assemble or install a product are important, compared with 35% of less frequent shoppers.
“While consumers value faster-performing sites, the research indicates that loyal customers are also demanding personalized buying environments with rich features, such as sophisticated images and illustrative video, that help them purchase with confidence the products that are right for them,” says Paul Alfieri, Limelight vice president of marketing. “Based on these findings, marketers and e-commerce storefront operators preparing for the upcoming holiday shopping season can increase conversion and shopper loyalty by adding rich media and dynamic content.”