August 16, 2006, 12:00 AM

Add-to-cart rate 6%-15% higher with enriched product content, tests find

Rich media web content syndication provider WebCollage ran A/B tests across multiple manufacturers, retailers, products and millions of consumers and found that enriched content increased add-to-cart rates.

More e-retailers are experimenting with enriched content on their sites, with the results of newer deployments in terms of ROI either still on the way, or kept under wraps. But aggregated results from one rich media services provider show such content making a significant difference in add-to-cart rates.

Data was gathered by WebCollage from multiple retailers and manufacturers and across multiple products and millions of consumers this summer. WebCollage`s technology platform syndicates rich content from manufacturers directly to retailer sites for posting there.

In A/B tests this summer, WebCollage found that shoppers at its retailer sites served a product page offering a link to “see more product information from manufacturer,” with the page featuring rich media and expanded HTML content, added products to their carts at least 6% more often than shoppers not served that link. Depending on the product, the retailer and the manufacturer, the add-to-cart ratio increased by as much as 15%, according to the company.

CEO Eli Singer says the findings show that that e-retailers` thinking has evolved – or should – from the earlier notion that the typical shopper is someone who already knows what they want. “The entire idea was how many clicks it took to find and buy something,” he says. But today, he says, retailers are realizing that sites must also serve shoppers who are still making up their minds, with features such as enriched content to help the decision process. “The 95% of people who don’t convert on your site are there because they are still in the process of choosing a product,” he adds. “They want advice.” And if they don’t find it at the site, he adds, they’ll leave the site to find it.

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