COVID-19 Action Items: Website Taxonomy

June 29, 2020

by Virtucom Group Team

Note: This post is part of our 4-part series on COVID-19 action items to optimize your ecommerce strategy. To learn more, check out the rest of the series here.

COVID-19 has caused many consumers to shop online for essentials they’d normally buy in stores, including everything from cleaning products to cars. A 68% year-over-year surge in U.S. ecommerce as of mid-April supports this trend, making the online shopping experience more important than ever.

If your site fails to provide logical categorization, easy filtering, and simple searches to navigate a large, complex assortment, these shoppers will buy elsewhere. With this in mind, website taxonomy must be a high priority on your COVID-19 ecommerce strategy to-do list.

Website Taxonomy Checklist

An ecommerce website taxonomy should:

  • Limit input choices to reduce human error
  • Guide shoppers to product pages in as few clicks as possible
  • Make filtering and navigating attributes easy

Even the most accurate, complete, and consistent product data won’t perform as expected unless it’s structured within a website taxonomy built for your product assortment. To make your taxonomy work harder for customers, tackle three action items:

1.      Review and Update Categories

Ensure that your taxonomy organizes products into logical, easy-to-find categories that accurately represent the full scope of your assortment. When shoppers quickly find what they need, attachment rates go up and abandoned carts decrease.  

2.     Enhance Attribute Modeling

Each product category must contain the attributes customers are most interested in. These range from dimensions, color, and warranty coverage to category-specific attributes, like processor speed, wireless technology, or screen resolution. If your attribute model no longer matches the products it represents or contains outdated or extraneous data points, update as needed.

3.      Optimize Lists of Values (LOVs)

Normalized LOVs promote consistency and simple filtering. For best results, all values should:

        • Use a singular notation for units of measure (UOM)
        • Consistently use imperial or metric values
        • Display numeric fields as numbers – not text
        • Limit use of open text fields

Data Modeling and Increased Conversions

Ecommerce sites have seen an average 113.2% gain in conversion rates since stay-at-home orders began. If you’re seeing more traffic without more purchases, your website taxonomy could be delivering a subpar shopping experience.

With more shoppers online than ever before, your website taxonomy must support easy browsing, faceted navigation, and a frictionless path to checkout. By making these improvements, you should see increased conversion and attachment rates, fewer abandoned carts, and greater consumer confidence.

Website Taxonomy to Optimize Your Assortment

The COVID-19 pandemic has turned brick-and-mortar loyalists into online shoppers. To meet their needs, your site requires a comprehensive taxonomy that makes browsing, sorting, and buying easy. Need support to update or redesign your website taxonomy? Turn to Virtucom Group. Our team has helped retailers, suppliers, and distributors deliver optimized online shopping and browsing experiences for more than 20 years.

Schedule a consultation today to learn more, and visit us again next week for part four in our ongoing series.

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