Sizedoes matter in ecommerce – and not just for apparel. When you’re looking at static photos of merchandise online, whether it be a bouquet of flowers, piece of furniture, or article of clothing, it can be very difficult to visualize the size of the item in the absence of “known” comparisons. But soda cans and dollar bills in your product photography won’t do the job.
There are three big reasons to ensure an easy-to-access size chart is available on every Product Detail Page (PDP) across your site: increased conversions, fewer support interactions, and a reduction in returns and associated shipping, restocking, and administrative costs.
A recent article from Deloitte Digital highlights the huge opportunity in ecommerce to get the fit guide right. “A customer that reviews your size guide is three to five times more likely to purchase than one that doesn't.”
And if you deliver the right size information in an easy to find and easy to use way, you’re likely to avoid a customer submitting a chat or support interaction to clarify details about product fit and size selection. Great customer service increases brand loyalty, but if you can offer self-service – which 60% of consumers prefer anyway - you can reduce the need for (and cost of) human intervention while shortening the path-to-purchase.
Nearly half of all shoppers buy multiple sizes to find the right fit, returning the rest. Unsurprisingly, more than half of all returns are due to incorrect sizing or poor fit. The increased expense incurred for shipping multiple products, the lost opportunity to sell those items while they are in transit or awaiting return, and the administrative burden of re-stocking and re-listing the item costs ecommerce companies millions annually.
How to Level-Up the Size-Finding Experience for Customers
If you sell jeans, you can include the inseam, thigh circumference, and width of the opening at the bottom.
Soft Surroundings offers an interactive denim guide that highlights key features of each style, as well as when to wear them and how to pair them with other items like shoes and accessories. This can help a customer compare the different styles in a single view and see how they fit in comparison to one another.
R.M.Williams also provides a rich experience that includes video for a more complete view of the product fit. And, once a user settles on the perfect style, they can easily view all of the fabric and wash options available in that fit. That “shop the style” approach de-clutters the listing page for the buyer.
Another great example of this “fit-first” model is the support that M&S’s bra product pages provides. In addition to offering a full bra fit guide, each product page surfaces details around whether the specific product fits true to size, and what the measurements are of the model wearing the item. This can help the buyer relate the imagery to their own size, and determine whether they need to properly measure or get help choosing.
Give them the tools they need to follow your instructions:
If you’re going to encourage a customer to measure anything in order to use your size chart, it’s best if you can provide them with all of the instructions and tools they need to do it properly. The M&S example above includes detailed information about proper fit and how to evaluate your current wardrobe beyond “it’s the size I’ve always bought.”
Another great example of this is Blue Nile’s ring sizing instructions. A jeweler has tools and knows how the body responds to temperature and humidity, and is easily able to recommend the right size when a customer is shopping in-store. Online jewelry stores don’t want to disappoint, but have to rely on the customer to put the work in to get sizing right. Blue Nile and other ecommerce jewelers provide detailed instructions for measuring, print-at-home and easily available tools to use, as well as the time of day and conditions to measure under.
Stride Rite offers two options for parents looking to find the right sized shoes for their children – instructions for tracing their feet and measuring, or a printable size guide in the event their kid won’t sit still long enough for a full foot portrait. Customer preferences vary, so whenever you can offer multiple experiences to meet them where they are, that’s ideal.
Tips for Impactful Size Guides
Be sure to configure your PDPs so the right type of size chart displays based on the category or product type – better yet, provide specific size charts for individual products that refer to the specific cut and way the material lays or stretches to make it easier for customers. A size guide on a product page for a hipsack should display strap length and bag dimensions, not shirt, dress, and pant sizes that are irrelevant.
Using a static image with size information and conversions is a good start, but if you can maintain your product sizing in a database or even a standard spreadsheet, it’s easy to tap into and create a customized interactive experience for buyers. Don’t have them look at numbers in rows and columns, instead ask them their height, weight, and preferences, then tell them what size they likely require.
Leverage user generated photos to give customers a glimpse of how an article of clothing actually fits a real human as opposed to a model or mannequin. This is also true for other products, of course. As Katie Hudson, Content Director at online flower delivery company Urbanstems recently shared with Digital Commerce 360, “when [we] removed reviews, [we] saw conversions decrease 25%. From there [we] better understood how much customers care about reviews. They want to see how the actual product arrives.”
Customer ratings and reviews are another great way for customers to figure out whether things fit true to size or run large or small. Nordstrom specifically calls out the fit for each review given.
Use Technology to Take it to the Next Level
Bringing all of this useful content into your ecommerce site, particularly onto your PDPs where it will be most valuable, isn’t always easy to do with legacy ecommerce platforms and your CMS alone. Fortunately, Fastr Frontend can help you ensure your customers find the size and fit information they need to make their purchase decision – and hopefully reduce returns, too.
Fastr Frontend can also integrate with best-of-breed technologies and apps that leverage Artificial Intelligence, Augmented Reality, and Machine Learning. A few to explore include: Kiwi Sizing, Truefit,Easysize, 3D look, and Virtusize.