MedicalSupplyDepot.com earlier this month launched a redesigned web site. The revamp came about after the retailer's executives last year arrived at a stark realization—its bounce rate was high because shoppers were having a hard time finding what they were looking for.
“There was too much going on, which made it difficult for customers to focus on the one thing they were on our site for,” says the retailer’s president Meir Tsinman.
Adding to the problem were first view page load times that were as long as five seconds.
Fixing the problems meant overhauling the entire site, says Tsinman. The retailer turned to e-commerce software provider NetSuite, which worked with MedicalSupplyDepot.com to cut out clutter. Out went the site’s wide-ranging color palette, which included, purple, green, orange and blue and in came a streamlined look that features blue and red. Out went the site’s two-layered header and in came a simplified header featuring the top-selling categories. Out went the customer testimonials that took up space along the right margin of the page and in came more white space.
Because a number of consumers rely on search to find what they’re looking for, the retailer worked with its vendor Celebros to ensure that search results also loaded quickly. A primary focus of the redesign was to also make the site search box more prominent by reducing the amount of navigation options on its home page.
“We wanted to get rid of the noise and make a clean and simple site that produced a better user experience,” he says.
The changes reduced the site’s first view page load time to about three seconds. Cutting two seconds off the site’s load time is important because NetSuite research shows conversion rates drop 7% for every second it takes a web page to load.
Improving the shopping experience also meant ensuring that shopping is simple easy, says Tsinman. “We want to give the shopper whatever it is that they want in the fastest, clearest way possible,” he says.
That meant eliminating the old site’s “best sellers” section of the home page, which included a second search bar. In its place are eight “featured categories,” such as assistive furniture and wheelchairs, with the four top-selling subcategories highlighted below each category.
Since the redesigned site launched earlier this month, the retailer’s average order value hasn’t fallen from the fourth quarter, which Tsinman says is impressive because the fourth quarter traditionally has the highest order value. “That tells me we’re doing something right,” he says.