E-commerce trends of 2015

We have already spoken about e-commerce design trends before. Browsing through hundreds and hundreds of shops both for work and for myself, I have noticed some definite trends for some of the features. And today I’m going to show you what successful shops are using to provide their customers with even more features.

Decision making

Editor’s picks

Editor’s picks have become a very important and settled trend for shops with a medium to large number of items. It’s an additional source of information for indecisive clients. Highlighting products by quality, someone’s personal choice, occasion or special requirements is a great way to lead customers to their final choice.

E-commerce trends of 2015 - editor's picks

Made-up comparison charts

As many stores have a comparison feature, it’s also a good idea to provide customers with made-up comparison charts for popular products, or for products with little difference, or for items from one product line. This e-commerce trend also saves a lot of time for shoppers as they don’t have to browse and add several products to comparison having no idea even which items they should actually compare.

Latest e-commerce trends of 2015 - made-up comparison tables

Sold out

Indeed, should you even keep a sold out product on the list? Well, at first sight it may seem that this status will only cause customers’ frustration, as this means that they missed a nice product or a good deal, and others didn’t.

But there are ways you can put this situation to good marketing use.

If you go to greats.com, you’ll see a sold out product on the homepage:

Recent e-commerce trends in 2015 - sold out

But if you go to the page of the sold out product, they won’t leave you alone, offering other products or asking you to subscribe. In this case a sold out product is something good enough (because people bought everything!) to catch one’s attention.

Sold out e-commerce marketing trend

First review notification

If the customer doesn’t want to buy the product without a single review, let him subscribe and know when the first review appears. Like ModCloth does:

First review subscription

Unusual pop-ups

Hey!

Which side are you on?

Do you consider pop-ups to be a hilariously effective marketing instrument?

Or are you annoyed every time this little thing interrupts you, begging, asking, claiming your email address?

The thing is, both sides are right. But in 2015 people became more immune to pop-ups just like it happened with ads – too many, too bright, too much of everything. And marketers began to think how to bring back the former marketing success to pop-ups.

Well, they came up with an idea to make a pop-up an unusual thing. It could be unusual in many ways: because of shape, color, animation, position, size, wording or offering something more appealing than a first order discount.

E-commerce trends of 2015 - unusual pop-ups

Unusual pop-ups

Pop-ups attached to the lower bottom of the page are a real e-commerce trend nowadays; they do their job while they don’t hide the site’s content and don’t annoy customers, still staying in sight:

Unusual pop-ups

Product Grid

Minimal product grid

A recent e-commerce trend is showing product grid pictures without product names, buttons or any other information. It’s a very courageous step, and it can be applied if you’re selling products that are more about style and image than features. Moreover, as this trend is not very widespread yet, such a design will be definitely remembered.

Latest e-commerce trends of 2015 - product grid with pictures only

Horizontal pictures

Vertical images are considered to be more effective when it comes to product grid, as it saves space, and it’s a common design pattern for pages with product grids.

Thus, horizontal images look rather unconventional. And, frankly speaking, they’re working much better for products that also have horizontal oriented shapes or for interior pictures.

Note: horizontal orientation isn’t a good choice for middle or big number of products.

E-commerce trends of 2015 - horizontal images on product gridGIF animation

Regardless of the fact how you pronounce GIF, it’s an emerging trend to use GIF animation for product images. They are loaded fast (at least, faster than videos), and they are of help when it’s needed to show the product feature right away. Here’s a great example:

E-commerce trends - GIF animation

Bigger images

To showcase more details of a product or just to catch attention, online merchants use bigger images on product grid. And in most of the cases they are responsive – so if you go full screen, the pics appear to be even bigger.

E-commerce trends - bigger imagesAlternative grid design

Your product grid shouldn’t be conventional at all! It’s perfectly okay to go from a conventional pattern to something more lively.

E-commerce trends - alternative grid design

Combined product picture

If you feel very important to show two views of the product at once, do it!

Emerging e-commerce trends of 2015 - combined product picture

Sizing options

Advanced sizing suggestions

Picking the right size has always been a pain for online shoppers. Standard sizes and even measurements can’t guarantee that the item would fit even if you measure yourself head to toe.

That’s why your mission is to give as much information about size/fit as you can:

E-commerce trends - sizing suggestions

A/B test it, and you’ll see the results! Another example:

E-commerce trends - sizing suggestions

Fit survey

Let customers tell each other about how this item fits.

Latest e-commerce trends - fit survey

Menus

Huge tappable menus

Big or sometimes even huge tappable menus came to us from tablets and mobile. Well, there is no reason why they can be bad for desktop:

Recent e-commerce trends - huge menus

Menus with icons or pics

Visual indicators will help intuitively navigate through menus. This is not about just faster browsing, this example shows how menu icons help customers decide what they actually want to buy if they’re not quite familiar with product types:

E-commerce trends - menus with icons

Grew and strengthened

These features aren’t brand new and are used rather actively, so if you’re not in, take a look at how they can be helpful:

  • Tiled homepage. Now every junior marketer knows that carousels perform worse in e-commerce, and every huge online shop usually uses tiles for homepages.
  • 360′ view. Provides more information about the product. It’s easy to implement, so more and more shops are offering this feature.
  • Constructors and configurators – tools to create a custom product from parts or customize a standard one. Works for food delivery (pizza, salads and such), semi-individual clothes production, such as jeans, furniture; and such.
  • Instagram widgets and style galleries on product page – provide real-live experience from other customers. This is a more powerful trust signal if compared to reviews, as reviews can be faked, and it’s hard to imitate Instagram pictures from real people.

What other growing and popular e-commerce features have you seen? Share in comments!