Having a large selection of products that meets various needs of consumers is a desirable place to be for eCommerce merchants. However, with a wide offering, the chance for consumers to find products that may pique their interest becomes smaller.
The ability for products to be found is known as product discoverability. As eCommerce stores grow, discoverability can take a hit and become the key differentiator.
For optimal product discoverability on your Shopify store, a deep understanding of how consumers shop on your store is key. Moreover, having effective Shopify filters and sort solutions will go hand-in-hand to help you achieve this.
Let's hunker down and we'll show you how optimal Shopify filter and sort solutions can boost your store’s product discoverability, AND, for the foolproof real-life examples of how the best eCommerce stores are nailing their in-store product filtering and sorting experience for customers.
Back to basics: What Are Filter & Sort?
Filter and sort work together to help visitors to eCommerce sites browse through products and find the ones that are a better fit for their needs.
When a consumer filters during search or browsing, they select specific criteria in order to eliminate irrelevant products and only view what matches their requirements. Products can be filtered by virtually anything, with common options being size, color, brand, and reviews.
Sorting refers to the order in which products are displayed with the aim of viewing the most preferable first. According to Baymard, price, user rating, best selling, and newest are the most sought-after sorting types.
Surprisingly, despite the clear usefulness of having filters and sorting options available on eCommerce websites, 84% of sites give a poor filtering experience whilst 64% do not even provide the four essential sort types.
In case you’re not completely sold on investing in robust filtering and sorting functionality for your Shopify store, we’ll dig into how this can enhance product discoverability.
3 Ways Shopify Filters & Sort Can Enhance Product Discoverability
With effective filtering and sort features, you can ensure that relevant products reach visitors to your store with ease.
Offer exactly what customers are looking for
A key ingredient in making product filters that enhance discoverability is an understanding of how consumers search for the different types of items in your store.
What specific attributes or features are they looking for in each of the collection pages of your store? What information is of value to your customers when they are conducting a search? With such knowledge, you can attune your filters so that shoppers can discover highly relevant products in bite-sized chunks.
Adequately narrowing down the number of products displayed to consumers while browsing is vital. If you fail to do that, visitors to your store will likely be faced with choice paralysis.
Research has shown that presenting people with too many options impedes decision-making. An excess of choice will in fact cause shoppers to stop in their tracks and abandon browsing altogether.
Furthermore, a Baymard study revealed that a lack of category-specific filter options resulted in visitors giving up on browsing. Hence, should the filters present on your Shopify store only superficially lessen the products shown, you will actually damage discoverability.
Simplify product browsing with multi-select filters and smart sorting
Equipping your store with multi-select filters is definitely something to contemplate if you are aiming for top-notch discoverability. By providing this, visitors can find exactly what they want in one fell swoop.
Forcing consumers to conduct multiple queries makes for quite a tedious task. Remember, shoppers want convenience so you should be doing your utmost to ensure this.
A good understanding of the attributes audiobook listeners are after is clear on the Libro.fm store. Customers may be looking for a short audiobook, for example, without a particular length in mind. Hence, Sort by Length would be an efficient way for them to discover such audiobooks. (Source: Libro.fm)
Sorting is also a principal consideration in heightening and aiding the discoverability of products in your store.
Sort allows shoppers to organize the items on a collections page or search results page in a way that makes sense to them. Moreover, just 50% of digital consumers make it to 1000 pixels when scrolling.
Therefore, you’d better make sure that there are effective sort options to reduce the friction when it comes to your customers finding the precise products they desire.
Reviews and ratings are another important method of contracting and also sorting results for shoppers. A whopping 89% of consumers are actively seeking reviews as part of their search process.
So it would make sense to offer this as a way of helping shoppers discover products that could be of interest to them, right?
Unfortunately, a third of online retail stores do not provide this function. Consumers prioritize high average ratings as a starting point for browsing, thus, allowing them to do so is a sure-fire way to optimize product discoverability.
Personalize seamless product discovery for customers
While browsing products, customers have varied preferences. So by doubling down on filtering and sorting personalization, you’ll help your store’s visitors quickly hone in on the desired products without even realizing that all of their selections are well-prepared.
A conventional and specific filter and sort feature should cover all product’s attributes, such as metadata, and thematic filtering options, or be on both top and left sides of the store - the list goes on.
For example, if you sell sunglasses, you’ll need to know which product’s details customers will look into - in this case, it’s shapes or shade colors, not sizes.
You can incorporate other personal options for your shoppers too, such as choosing sunglasses based on activities (photographing, gaming, hiking, running, etc.) or based on their own face shapes (round, oval, square,…).
It’s just one simple thing to remember: always let your customers customize their search results using a variety of attributes to filter and sort - the more buyers-focused, the better.
All of these filtering and sorting preparations are to bring your store’s visitors the ability to freely dig into your product lists applying their own preferences or narrowing down their choices without breaking a sweat.
👉 Learn more about customers’ on-site filter and search behaviors to bring them delightful product browsing experiences: E-book: Insights of eCommerce Filter & Search for 2022
Now that the ways in which filter and sort can propel the discoverability of your products are apparent, let’s take a look at some real-life examples of Shopify stores that are leading the way with this functionality.
Top FoolProof Examples of Filter & Sort by Shopify Stores
(Source: Nine West)
Nine West hits the nail on the head when it comes to their filter options. Not only does their website include the coveted Reviews filter, they also take into account attributes specific to footwear that consumers care about.
Feet come in all shapes and sizes, which can make it extremely difficult to ascertain virtually how well particular shoes will fit on an individual.
The opportunity to not just filter by size, but also by width does a lot to alleviate any worries their customer might have about finding shoes that are right for their foot shape.
Moreover, particular styles of footwear are easier to come by via their filters, making discovering the right types of shoes for you a breeze.
(Source: Guess Australia)
Finding suitable products should not be a laborious task for your customers.
An important consideration for many consumers is price. However, a number of stores tend to make discovering products within a particular price range hard work, often requiring shoppers to perform multiple queries to see items suited towards their wallet.
A price slider, as seen on the Guess website, negates this. Rather than subjecting consumers to select different price points or pre-determined price ranges, they can instead customize the price of products to their liking.
Don’t forget that condensing is crucial for browsing, so allow visitors to your store to easily filter by price in addition to sorting by price.
(Source: Protein Package)
This is another shining example of truly understanding the customers’ demands in relation to your products.
Fitness enthusiasts’ dietary needs and requirements are varied and of extreme importance to them.
Protein Package clearly gets this as they enable their customers to quickly unearth tasty treats that are in line with their regime. Whether they are trying to build muscle, lose weight, cut out dairy, or follow a keto diet, the perfect food aids can easily be browsed through and found.
Giving consumers the chance to choose a number of filters at once allows them to quickly discover all the products suited towards their needs.
In the world of skincare, people will often have a variety of issues that they wish to combat through treatments. Dermalogica acknowledges this characteristic of their customers by enabling them to choose all the filters they want in one go.
By doing so visitors to their site can easily browse all the goods that cater to their skincare woes.
(Source: Staples CA)
Staples come close to hitting a homerun featuring almost all of the essential sorting options, including the rarely seen Customer Rating.
With electronic goods often carrying a high price tag and therefore being a high involvement decision for consumers to make, being able to prioritize by customer ratings is a desirable way to sift through options.
Source: Esports Gear
Customers care about shipping! Knowing this, Esport Gears provides product filters with shipping options right on top.
Plus, customers can narrow their product search by various product details - which is important since the targeted customers are games and tech enthusiasts who have the eyes and knowledge for geek stuff.
These filter options vary from collection to collection. In mice collection, for example, customers can find their favorite mouse by filtering through availability, price range, size, number of buttons, shapes, wired or wireless type, button switches, grip style, weight, and sensor model.
Some minor details are displayed in a toggled list so they won’t get in the way if not really needed.
Esport Gears really make sure that customers can always find what product they want to have - instead of bragging about how many products they have in store.
⭐ Check out how Esports Gear boosted their conversion rate by 29% with our Shopify filter and search app: Increase conversion rate by 29% with an app upgrade for filter and search
Has your store optimized for a smooth filtering and sorting experience yet?
Providing a smooth browsing experience plays an imperative part in boosting eCommerce sales. Optimizing product discoverability can put you in a great position to achieve exactly that.
Don’t force visitors to your store to endlessly scroll through products on your site in the hopes that they will eventually find the item they are looking for.
Instead, allow them to narrow down and view products in a way that makes sense to them with the help of proficient product filter and sorting apps on your Shopify store.
Product Filter & Search by Boost can help you take large strides in creating the perfect filter options for your store. In fact, almost all of the above examples are using this solution to tailor their filter types in a way that resonates with their customer base.
Additionally, our partnering with Loox & Okendo means that you can include the much desired Filter by customer rating option to your store. Try it today and watch your sales soar for the upcoming holidays!