Product Page Tab Usage [SiteCatalyst]
If you sell products on your website, you will often find the need to provide detailed information to those browsing your products. For example, below you can see a product detail page for a Gas Grill. As you can see, there are tabs for Specifications, Ratings & Reviews, etc…
One of the things I have been asked by clients is to provide a way for them to see how often each of these pieces of information (usually in the form of tabs) is used. Specifically, I am usually asked the following questions:
- Which tabs are used the most?
- Which tabs are used the most for each product?
- In what order are these tabs clicked in general and for each product?
- Are there certain tabs that lead to conversion more than others?
Therefore, in this post, I will share some tips on how to answer these questions…
Tracking Tab Usage
To start, let’s focus on the easiest question – which tabs are being used most often. To do this, we need to capture the name of the tab each time it is accessed. While I normally use eVar variables over Traffic (sProp) variables, this is one case in which I prefer to use sProps for reasons you will see below. Therefore, when a visitor clicks on one of the tabs on a Product Detail Page (PDP), I like to pass the name of the tab and the product to which it is related to an sProp. For example, on the Product Detail Page shown above, if the visitor clicks on the “Ratings & Reviews” tab while on the “Kenmore 4-Burner LP Gas Grill,” I would pass the following:
s.prop60=”Kenmore 4-Burner Gas Grill:Ratings & Reviews”
By concatenating these values, I know that I had one instance of the combination of this particular product and the specific tab that was clicked. If the page doesn’t reload when the tab is clicked, you may have to use Custom Link tagging to set this sProp. In addition, it is important that you also capture the default tab item, which is normally some variation of “Overview.” In this case, when the Product Detail Page first loads, the value passed to the sProp would be “Kenmore 4-Burner Gas Grill:Overview.” By setting these values to an sProp, you can easily see how often each Product/tab combination is viewed and if you have unique visitors enabled for the sProp, you can see uniques for each combination as well:
Next, you can use SAINT Classifications to group all similar tabs together to see a rollup of use across all products. In the preceding example, we might want to group all cases of “Ratings & Reviews” across all products to see which types of tabs are getting the most action:
Product Tab Pathing
Now that we can see a general idea of which tabs are being used and which tabs are used for each product, the next question we want to answer is in which order are tabs being used. Whenever you want to see sequence in SiteCatalyst, you will want to use Pathing reports. This is the reason why I chose to use an sProp instead of an eVar for this setup since Pathing only works on sProps. In this case, once you have implemented the sProp described above, you can enable Pathing and you will be able to see the order in which tabs are used for each product like this:
However, this sProp and its Pathing capabilities will only allow you to see how visitors used tabs at the product level. What if you want to see a Pathing report that shows how tabs were used regardless of product? Unfortunately, this isn’t as easy as it should be. If you have the Discover product, you can see Pathing on the SAINT Classification we created above, but if you don’t have Discover, you will have to create a second sProp that captures only the tab name and also has Pathing enabled.
Product Tab Influence
Another question I get from clients related to Product Tabs has to do with the impact they have on conversion. For example, they want to know if visitors who view the Specifications tab are more likely to convert than those who do not. In SiteCatalyst, there are a few ways to accomplish this. First, once you have implemented the items above, you can create a Segment to filter sessions or people using specific tabs and see how that segment of visits/visitors compares to those who did not use the tabs. Keep in mind that you can segment on both detailed values (product+ tab) or the classified value (tab only) in the segment builder or Discover.
Another way to see the influence of tabs on KPI’s is to use Success Event Participation. By enabling Participation on the sProp described above for your key Success Events, you can see which ones have the most influence over time. For example, if we turn on Participation for the sProp shown above related to Orders, we can see a report like the one shown here:
In this report, we can see how many Orders each product/tab combination was in the flow of across weeks or months of visits. Then we can create a calculated metric which divides this Order Participation by the number of times each product/tab combination took place to see how influential it was as compared to other product tab combinations (since the numbers are small, in this example, I multiplied by 100 to make the differences easier to see). Obviously, the same principle can be applied to the sProp that does not contain the product as long as you are passing the values natively to an sProp and not creating it via a SAINT Classification. Finally, you could also pass the tab names to an eVar and set the allocation to Linear to spread credit across all tabs that are used, but since you may already be setting the sProp decried above for pathing purposes, Participation may be the logical way to go.
Keep in mind that the same principles described here can be applied to other items related to products – not just product detail page tabs. For example, you might have 360 degree views of products, product images, etc. that can all have an influence on conversion. You can treat these items the same as product tabs and capture them as shown above. Therefore, if you are curious about how website visitors are using tabs on your product detail pages or any other supplemental product information you provide, give the techniques shown here a try. If you have other tips on tracking this type of product content, leave a comment here.