Average order value (AOV) is the name of the game in ecommerce today. Squeezing as much out of every order as possible has inevitable due to rising ad costs. Shopify related products apps is a great weapon at your disposal to help boost AOV.
Showing related products to your customers at various stages of their buying journey can have either a positive result or a negative result. There certainly is an argument for both.
Lets quickly look at why you should or should not show related products and then we will quickly look at some best practices for doing it right.
Why You Should NOT Show Related Products on a Shopify Store
Shoppers are becoming increasingly impatient. Everybody is vying for our attention online and we are all inundated with offers and noise. Getting a potential customer to your store is hard enough (and expensive enough).
When you do get a customer the last thing you want to do is to scare them away. When someone is overwhelmed with options they tends to not make a decision.
Showing someone too many products and giving them too many options lead to indecision. This is the crux of why you should not show related products.
People get distracted so easily and if they intend to make a purchase and then see something else that distract them, they will simply click away and not buy.
By limiting the options you offer to a customer you help to give them clarity. You eliminate distraction and make it easier for them to come to a buying decision.
The problem is if you do not have what they are looking for. This is where the argument for showing related products comes in.
Why You SHOULD Show Related Products on a Shopify Store
Showing related products is a simple concept. It allows you to give customers a greater selection. While it may distract them, it may also offer them something that they will buy.
Instead of losing a customer you gain one simply because you provided some alternatives.
People are also very curious and love browsing around stores. People like doing this online as much as they like doing it in real stores.
If you show a lot of related products on your store you are far more likely to make a sale – even if the customer originally came to your store to buy something else.
So-called “general” dropshipping stores work on this concept. They are essentially stores full of popular “viral products” that have a wide appeal and could potentially sell to anyone. Showing a lot of related products casts the net wider and greatly improves your store’s conversion rate.
Best Practice For Showing Related Products to Boost Conversion Rate and AOV
Almost every store is different and there are no hard and fast rules. The best way to understand which related products to show on your store is to simply analyze your sales history.
- Look at what products people tend to buy in the same order or
- Look at customers with multiple orders over time to see what they buy eventually
This will give you the best insight as to what products to show as related products.
Common sense also goes a long way. Some products just pair together perfectly and your related products will actually help the customer make better buying decisions.
A simple example is that someone who buys shoes might want to buy socks with it.
Where to Show Related Products
The most common pace to display related products on your Shopify store is on your product pages. It is typically shown underneath the product details so that if someone scrolls all the way down they will see the related products.
This is probably the most sensible place to show related products and if you are not sure where to show yours then this is a good start.
Showing Frequently Bought Together recommendations right in your product descriptions is a great option to boost your AOV. There are a few apps that can do this exactly the way Amazon does it.
If it works for Amazon then it is definitely tried and tested but that does not mean it will work for you. From my experience, keep your product pages clean and free from distractions as far as possible.
Only show frequently bought together products if the take rate is high and there is a high chance that people will bite on the off
Another place where I see far too many people show related products is in the Shopping Cart.
I would recommend you don’t. You do not want to distract customers when they are in the cart. You can show very specific related products as an upsell but generally speaking it will lead to a lot more cart abandonment.
Displaying Related Products – Shopify Related Products Apps
Most paid apps and even a few free apps now come with a related products section built into the app. While some of them are okay I really do not like them simply because it gives you no control over which related products will show up on which product pages.
You want to be able to hand pick the exact related products that will show up for specific products. This way you can cherry pick the most relevant products and maximize the sales potential of each product page.
There are not many apps that can do this. Most related products apps try and be Amazon and try and use “A.I” to determine which related products to show.
Unless your store gets thousands of orders per month, these apps are worthless. It needs too much data to be worth anything.
You are far better off to simply cherry pick which products to display as your related products.
The best app for this is an app called Cross Sell Related Products.
It gives you full control by assigning specific products to show as related products on specific product pages. It also allows you to set up general products to display on unassigned product pages.
It is really easy to use and above all it is fat. So many of these related products apps can really slow down your store. It is not cheap though at $20/month.
If you want to save some cash then there is an alternative. Globo Upsell, Related Products is cheap and offer a lot of the same functionality. Its a bit harder to set up and takes a bit more time to adjust but it does the job.
One great feature is to easily create rules based on product tags. This allows you to add products to be displayed as related products by simply editing tags. This can save a lot of time and make your workflow easier.
It also has “Amazon like” frequently bought together features that you can manually place anywhere on your product pages.
I would recommend you go for the “Basic Plan” and even at $4/month it won’t break the bank. It is much slower than Cross Sell Related Products though and displaying too many related products to cross sell can slow your site down.
In the end you really need to test related products all the time. You need to make sure that it actually helps to increase your AOV and/or conversion rate. You also need to constantly test which products work better together.
Ot is a never ending process of improvement.
Don’t assume anything and don’t leave this to chance. Pay very close attention to how people behave on your store.
Do not go overboard and use Shopify related products sparingly. Less is more and less tends to have a greater impact.
In fact, in many cases not showing related products at all will improve your store’s conversion rate.