German pureplay Baby-Markt’s [IRDX RBMT] merchandising task is to showcase and explain its range of more than 40,000 products to an audience that includes expectant and new parents who may not be familiar with what’s on offer.
It does this through a navigation structure that focuses on the product function: key categories (on the English language baby-markt.com website) include strollers, car seats, feeding and play. Filters relevant to each main category then enable shoppers to narrow down their search still further. In the apparel section, users can search by age and size or by maternity wear, while the car seat category narrows down searches to seats that are for babies, booster seats and then by different weight ranges, as well as by bike seats. Within each sub-category there are further navigational filters, such as by brand, by weight and by whether it’s in the sale.
Meanwhile, those shoppers who know precisely what they want can get straight to items via a search box that’s located prominently on the homepage.
Once a shopper arrives at a product page, items are clearly illustrated through a range of images, with different colour alternatives clearly flagged. It’s immediately clear from the page not only whether the item is in stock, but how many are available, and how quickly delivery can be made. Scrolling down, shoppers can then look in more detail at the product description, accessories that are available, as well as see service and shipping information. Price, including discounts, and payment methods are clearly marked.
The approach is consistent across all of its 12 websites in the European Economic Area, plus the baby-markt.com website, which features both the English language and strategic messages in Chinese characters. Some sites, such as the Dutch website (pinkorblue.nl) feature a local language blog.
InternetRetailing researchers judged that the site, which sees most of its traffic from the German and Austrian markets, scored consistently across all metrics. It stood out for its use of promotions, detailed product information, and for the use of cross-selling and upselling recommendations – both from the product page and once the shopper reached the checkout.
Overall, Baby-Markt rises to the challenge of enabling parents to identify and find the items that will be most useful to them in a clear and easy manner. It also makes it easy for users from other countries in the EEA, plus Switzerland, to buy from a site that’s localised to their needs.