Users were asked to choose a barbeque for themselves on the Argos website and reserve it for collection. Participants confidently browsed the site’s navigation and easily found the empty search box. Once into the BBQ section, the guided navigation worked well for those users who didn’t use search. However, users that searched for barbeques off the home page were distracted by the two recommended products on the results page and ignored the search results found below the page-fold.
Eye tracking showed us that users made their shortlists primarily based on product images and product names; then used price for final selection. During the selection process some users sorted the items in price order.
It was quite apparent that users struggled to reserve products, muddling their way through to completion. Users failed to understand the difference between checking whether an item was available for collection and then having to repeat the process to actually reserve the item at their chosen store. We could see users’ eyes bouncing between the information in the trolley saying the item was available for collection and then cautiously reading the options below it for choosing collection, home delivery and signing up for an Argos credit card.
One user gave up searching for a store that had their chosen BBQ in stock as he had to exhaustively check each store with no help from the system with regard to stock levels or how far away the store was. For the users that made it through to the page where they started to confirm a reservation, they incorrectly keyed in both postcode and town name and then looked at the ‘OR’ and realised they only needed to provide one.
Users were distracted by the “*must be completed” on the final page of the reservation process, completely missing the “get a copy of your reservation details” title and then going to the text box for providing their email address, without understanding what this was for.
There are clear opportunities for improving the user journey when reserving an item for collection. We didn’t expect to see a user get so frustrated and abort an order with such a mature retail website.
SimpleUsability have been providing expert eye tracking advice for the readers of Internet Retailing Magazine since 2009.