E-Commerce UX Audit

What are the 50 most important changes you can make to your checkout, navigation, search, product pages, and mobile User Experience?

Based on the findings from Baymard Institute’s 32,000 hours of large-scale e-commerce usability and User Experience (UX) testing, Baymard will conduct an in-depth UX audit of your e-commerce site.

Baymard’s team of UX researchers will write a detailed 130+ page report outlining 50 prioritized and research-backed user experience improvements for your site, provide best practice implementation examples from leading sites, perform a detailed unbiased UX performance analysis using 550+ parameters, and compare your UX performance to leading e-commerce sites across those parameters.

Learn more about the audit analysis, deliverables, and costs in the 5 sections below:

Office Depot Logo

“Baymard has been a great resource in helping us improve the customer experience. We are continually applying these best practices to our sites.

What’s Included?

A ‘Full-Site UX audit’ includes:

  • A full UX analysis and assessment of your homepage & category navigation, on-site search, product details pages, product lists & filtering, checkout process, and mobile web user experience, conducted by a lead usability researcher at Baymard Institute, utilizing the institute’s findings from over 32,000 hours of large-scale UX testing.
  • The auditors at Baymard Institute will write a detailed 130+ page report with 50 research-backed suggestions for improvement. Each suggestion includes a description of the identified user experience issue along with a proposed solution and 1–4 best practice examples from leading e-commerce sites.
  • 6 detailed UX scorecards with a total of 550+ UX performance scoring parameters, used for direct UX performance comparison against competitors among the top 60 grossing US and International e-commerce sites.
  • A 2-hour video conference where we go over the audit results with you and your team, to discuss the audit results and suggestions for improvements.
  • A full-site UX audit include 4 months of free access to the Baymard Premium ‘Medium’ plan with full access to Baymard’s 32,000 hours of UX research findings.

Etsy Logo

“Thank you. This was an excellent piece of work: professional, thorough, and actionable for the team. We're very happy with the work Baymard has done for us so far, and I hope we'll have the chance to work together again on future projects.

Audit Focus

You can choose to have one or more elements of your site (or prototype) audited. Most clients combine all of the 6 audit focus areas below into a ‘Full-Site UX audit’:

  1. Homepage & Category Navigation: design and user experience of your homepage, the main navigation, drop-down menus, category pages, custom and sub-category pages, the overall site taxonomy, general site-wide navigation, etc.
  2. Search Experience (on-site search): the type of search queries the search engine supports, what and how your product data is searched, the logic for your autocomplete suggestions, how users are guided in case of partial matches, “No results” pages, the layout and features of the search results page (including faceted search logic), etc.
  3. Product Lists & Filtering: design and usability of your category and search product listing pages, design and logic for all filtering and sorting tools, the list item design and information, product thumbnails, how products are loaded, comparison features, etc.
  4. Product Details Pages: the design and usability of your entire product page implementation, including the overall page layout and structure, product images and videos, the image gallery UI, page features, descriptions and spec sheets, “Add to Cart”, user review layout & submission forms, cross-sell logic & placement, etc.
  5. The Checkout Process: the user experience of your entire checkout flow, including shopping cart, account selection, guest checkout, detailed form field usability, field labels, security concerns, shipping methods, payment methods and fields, wording of error messages, etc.
  6. Mobile Specific: In addition to auditing all of the above site elements on your mobile website, Baymard will also audit for mobile specific issues, such as how the interface handles users’ lack of page overview, touch interactions and hit areas for the main menu, mobile image zoom, mobile search , mobile touch keyboards, design deviations between mobile and desktop, etc.


See a detailed list of the 550+ site elements included in the audit.

Detailed List of Audited Site Elements

A ‘Full-Site UX audit’ include a full analysis and UX performance scoring across 550+ weighted parameters (a selection are listed below), divided into 6 main audit focus areas:

1) Homepage & Category Audit

The Homepage & Category UX audit focus area includes a full analysis of the following elements:

Homepage
The homepage structure, design, carousels, personalization and promotions.

Category Taxonomy
The overall e-commerce category structure and taxonomy, incl. the common issue of “over-categorization”, information architecture, catalog breadth, category redundancy, overly deep or shallow categories, and industry-specific naming, etc.

Main Navigation
The main e-commerce navigation design, mega drop-down menus, product navigation and its visual hierarchy, courtesy non-product navigation, etc.

Intermediary Category Pages
How deep in the site hierarchy “Intermediary Category” pages are used (vs. using a product listing page), how the category pages are structured and what content they contain, incl. inspirational paths, featured products, and curated content, etc.

Product Lists
Overall category-based product listings layout, “grid” and “list” views, pagination, items per page, sorting design and filtering features, etc.

Site-Wide Layout
Site-wide layouts, footers, newsletter dialogs, ad positioning, and return policy links, etc.

Cross-Navigation & -Selling
The ability to perform cross-navigation on category and product pages, incl. scope jumping, breadcrumbs, cross- and up-selling, and content sections, etc.

2) On-Site Search Audit

The On-Site Search UX audit focus area includes a full analysis of the following elements:

Query Types
The level of compliance with 12 different overarching types of search queries that users make on e-commerce sites, all vital for your search engine to support (Exact, Product Type, Feature, Thematic, Relational, Compatibility, Symbol, Subjective, Symptom, Implicit, Non-Product, and Natural Language). How and what product data is actually searched.

Search Form & Logic
The design and behavior of the search field itself, query persistence, manual and automatic search scope selection, special characters, etc.

Autocomplete
How the autocomplete feature (“predictive search”) should be designed, the types of suggestions it should make, keyboard behavior support, suggesting scopes and products, etc.

Results Logic & Guidance
How to guide users toward better paths on the results page, including suggesting alternate queries, scopes, “No results” pages, misspellings, etc.

Results Layout
The layout and features of the search results page, such as dynamic list layouts, the search results information, search snippets, pagination, etc.

Results Filtering & Sorting
Filtering and sorting of search results, including essential filtering types, faceted search, the design and logic for long lists of filters, filter naming, dynamic sorting, etc.

3) Product Page Audit

The Product Page UX audit focus area includes a full analysis of the following elements:

Product Page Layout
Product page layouts: “Horizontal Tabs”, “Sticky TOCs”, “Collapsed Sections”, “One Long Page”, etc.

Product Images
How users inspect product images, the 7 different image types e-commerce sites need, number of images, etc.

Image Gallery User Interface
Image gallery design, image navigation, methods of zoom, carousels, overlays, default image and size, etc.

Product Video & 360-Views
Product videos and interactive “360-View” features, incl. video content, structure, placement, and video player features.

The “Buy” Section
Design and position of elements such as “Add to Cart” button, prices & discounts, quantity field, “Out of Stock”, etc.

Shipping, Returns, & Gifting
Shipping and return information at the product page, “Free Shipping” tiers, gifting, and “Find in Store” features.

Product Variations
Selecting color and size variations, content across variations, product customizations and personalizations.

Product Description
Product information and descriptions, the type of content needed, text styling, sub-titles, product headlines, etc.

Product Specifications Sheet
Spec sheet layout, specs in tables vs. product descriptions, help features, post-processing of vendor data, etc.

User Reviews
User reviews, the review submission form, review filtering, sorting & navigation, rating distribution summaries, etc.

Auxiliary Content
Q&A, FAQs, product manuals, social media tools, and expert-generated content.

Cross-Sells & Cross-Navigation
Cross-sells design, placement, and logic, cross-navigation elements, “Recently Viewed Products”, etc.

4) Product Lists, Filters, & Sorting Audit

The Product Lists, Filters, & Sorting UX audit focus area includes a full analysis of the following elements:

List Layout
The design and features of the overall layout of the product list, incl. “list” vs. “grid” layouts, product data consistency, post-processing vendor-supplied data, “responsive upscaling” of product lists, etc.

Loading Products
The loading pattern for new items loaded into the product list, number of products displayed by default, etc.

List Items: What Information to Include
The type and amount of product attributes to include in each list item, product variations in list items, user ratings averages in list items, etc.

List Items: User Interface
The styling and display of the included information such a price, product specifications, variations, units, etc.

List Items: Product Thumbnails
The type of product thumbnails in each list item, what they depict, their size, hover-enabled thumbnails, showing packaging, etc.

List Items: Hover & Hit Areas
The list item’s click behavior, hover effect synchronization, “quick view” features, dynamic amount of content on hover, etc.

List Items: Personalization
Context-aware thumbnails, personalized list item and product attributes, highlighting of items, etc.

Filtering: Available Filters
The type, amount, and specificity of filters users need, incl. thematic filters, product-specific filters, compatibility filters, symptom filters, product status filters, gifting filters, user-defined filters, price filters, etc.

Filtering: Scope & Logic
Filtering logic, scope, and naming schemas, such as over-categorization, mutually exclusive filtering values and non-exclusive values (“AND” “OR” logics), filtering tooltips, filter names, filter value consistency, dynamically renaming filters, etc.

Filtering Interface & Layout
Filtering type’s and filtering value’s styling, placement, filter truncation, incl. handling filtering values with 0 matches, filter value checkbox and link styling, the display sequence for filtering values, slider interfaces, etc.

Filtering: Applying & Applied Filters
“Apply” buttons and live updating as filters are applied, the position and styling for applied filtering values, browser history, filter and sorting persistence, etc.

Sorting
The default sort type, diversity in sorting logic, the sorting interface and scope, alphabetical sorting, category-specific sort types, sorting directions, sorting naming, the scope of the sorting tool, labeling of the sorting interface, dead-end sorting options, logic for customer rating sorting, etc.

Comparison Tool
When to have a comparison feature, the design and placement of the “compare” link, the view and features of the comparison page, product data consistency, inline help options, etc.

5) Checkout Audit

The Checkout UX audit focus area includes a full analysis of the following elements:

Shopping Cart & “Added to Cart” Behavior
Shopping cart design and quantity and save features, but also the page-response when users add products to the cart (drop-down cart, etc.)

Account Selection & Creation
Account selection designs and communication, guest checkout, “Delayed Account Creation”, social media accounts, password rules, etc.

Customer & Address Information
Privacy concerns, shipping addresses, billing addresses, international addresses, phone fields, address auto-detection techniques, etc.

Gifting Flow & Features
How to gift-mark orders, how the checkout should change for gifting, gifting feature design and microcopy, etc.

Shipping & Store Pickup
Shipping interface design and information hierarchy, shipping descriptions, order cut-off times, and “Free Shipping” tiers, along with omni-channel features such as Store Pickup, Store Availability, and Ship to Store

Payment Flow & Methods (incl. 3rd-Party)
The payment methods interface, how to integrate and display 3rd-party payment options, gift card redemption flows, international currencies, coupon codes, etc.

Credit Card Form
The credit card field design and its validation logic and formatting, along with the expiration date, security code, and cardholder name inputs, field sequence, card icons, and card type selection

Order Review
Review step design, “Place Order” button placement, and necessary review data, along with its editing flow

Order Confirmation & E-Mail (to the extent it’s possible to access this)
The information and actions needed on the order confirmation page, along with the order confirmation e-mail

Checkout Page Design
Checkout process steps, “Enclosed Checkout” designs, order summary sidebars, and how to design and position the cart link in the site-wide header

User Attention & Interactions
Load indicators, feedback on user actions, the use of overlays, feedback requests, introduction of site-specific features, and embedded content from 3rd parties

Cross-Sells
Active vs. passive cross-selling, adapting cross-sells to user context, and pitfalls of specific placements and wording

Form Design & Features
How to design and position the primary button, “Apply” buttons, minimizing form intimidation, multi-column layouts, tabbing flows, CAPTCHAs, back-button and enter-keystroke behavior

Validation Errors & Data Persistence
How to design and position error messages, how to word them, and persisting data in non-secure and secure form fields, along with inline validation

Address Validators
When address validations are necessary, “Force-Proceeding” through address validators, along with address validator design and logic

Field Labels & Microcopy
Marking optional and required fields, field label position, tooltips, and optimizing microcopy and descriptions

Field Design & Features
How to match the type of interface with the input type, drop-downs and radio button implementations, input masks and character restrictions, custom designed input fields, etc.

Default Values & Autocompletion
Intelligent form features, including inferred selections, pre-fills, auto-fills, and personalization of the checkout flow

6) Mobile E-commerce Audit

The Mobile E-Commerce UX audit focus area includes a full analysis of the following elements:

Mobile Basics
Content and structure of mobile site vs. desktop site, size and spacing of of hit areas, multiple hit-areas within the same visual element, font-sizes, landscape mode, bugs and quirks vulnerable to the mobile platform, auto-zoom, etc.

Mobile Site Homepage & Main Navigation
Main navigation design and logic, double-hit area issues, homepage structure and design, auto-rotating carousels, etc.

Mobile Search
User’s crossover from category navigation to search, search scopes, misspellings and synonyms, search query support, “0 results” pages, Faceted Search filters, etc.

Mobile Product Lists
List item size, product thumbnail size relative to product type, amount of product attributes in list items, hit areas within the product list, separation of list items, pagination vs. load more vs. endless scrolling, visual indicators, product variations, list item interactions on a touch screen, etc.

Mobile Filtering & Sorting
Styling and position of both “filter” and “Sort” options, sort types, “apply” buttons vs. auto-applying filtering values, the display of applied filters, information scent, product status, filtering interface, etc.

Mobile Cross Navigation & Compatibility
Interlinking of compatibility-dependent products, cross-sells, list item consistency, etc.

Mobile Product Page Layouts
Product page structure, sub–product pages, collapsed product page sections, user reviews, “add to cart” button placement, “Store Pickup”, etc.

Product Images
Product image size, product image zoom levels, image ambiguity, touch gestures in the image gallery, etc.

Mobile Product Descriptions, Specs, & Compatibility
Division of product info between description and spec list, styling of product description, amount and level of specs included, product compatibility information and relationships, etc.

Mobile Shopping Cart
Cost estimates, number and placement of “checkout” buttons, saving mobile carts, picking up mobile carts on desktop devices, etc.

Mobile Checkout Steps
Account creation and guest checkout, shipping and billing addresses, shipping methods, “Store Pickup”, payment, order review, linear checkout flows, mobile process steps, etc.

Mobile Checkout UX
Optional vs. required fields, minimizing number of fields, form field label placement in smartphone portrait and landscape modes, inline labels, floating labels, grouping checkout info for mobile overview, field context, location detection, touch keyboard auto-correct, optimized keyboards, auto-capitalization, etc.

Optional Customizations:

  • “Focused UX audits”: choose only one or some of the 6 above-listed audit focus areas (most are $1900 each).
  • “Customized audits”: reach out for a custom quote for other areas not listed above, e.g. for travel and booking sites, B2B sites, telco, grocery, banking sites, mobile apps, etc.
  • “Competitive UX audits”: in addition to your site, we’ll also audit any competing e-commerce site(s) you’d like, for a direct competitor UX performance comparison (this is in addition to the comparison to the 60 top grossing US, European and International e-commerce sites, which is included with all audits).

Nike Inc. Logo

“Intelligent, consumer-focused insights that are clear and actionable. The team in the room really loved the way the Baymard Institute highlighted the optimizations in the various user experience elements (copy, layout, design, calls-to-action…), from the perspective of consumer struggles. Baymard’s Usability research really complements our other existing research tools.

Who Are UX Audits for?

Most commonly, UX audit services are used by:

  • E-commerce sites that would like to benchmark their UX performance to see how they stack up against major competitors and “State of the Art” e-commerce sites, to know where resources are best spent on further UX improvements.
  • Sites that would like inspiration and verification of their new redesign. It can even be before spending resources on the final design and code — auditing prototype designs is cheaper than re-coding.
  • Optimized e-commerce sites that need a pair of external and unbiased eyes to identify the last tweaks and improvements.
  • Agencies, designers, and tech vendors that want reassurance that they’re on the right track with their client’s e-commerce design.

Return on Investment: Even the smallest improvement in conversion rate for any e-commerce site with significant sales will lead to a notable return on investment. For example, an improvement from 3.1% to 3.6% in conversion rate for a site with $50,000,000 annual sales will yield $8,060,000 extra sales every year.

Google Logo

“I just wanted to take a minute to thank you for the amazing work on this audit. You should know that this has been very well received internally and there's a lot of excitement around adopting the ideas you have shared.

How Will the Audit Be Delivered? What Will It Cost?

A full-site desktop and mobile UX audit across all 6 audit focus areas costs $9,700 (USD) — this includes a volume discount of $2,700 compared to the rate for 6 individual “focused UX audits”.

A ‘Full-Site UX audit’ includes:

  • A full UX review and analysis by Baymard’s team of UX researchers of both your desktop and mobile websites’ homepage & category nav., search experience, product listings, product details pages, and checkout flow.
  • A 130+ page audit report with 50 prioritized suggestions for improvements. Each of these 50 suggestions explain the identified usability issue, the suggested change, and provide 1–4 best practice implementation examples from other leading e-commerce sites.
  • Six detailed UX performance scorecards with a total of 550+ review parameters, and with performance comparison against 60 top-grossing US, European, and International e-commerce sites.
  • A 2-hour video conference with you and your team to discuss the audit results.
  • A full-site UX audit include 4 months of free access to the Baymard Premium ‘Medium’ plan with full access to Baymard’s 32,000 hours of UX research findings.

Reach out below to discuss your needs or request a UX audit of your site.

Price: $9,700 · Lead time: 17-21 workdays

For more info and ordering call +1 (415) 315-9567 or write audit@baymard.com

  • Refund policy: In the event that we’re unable to provide 40 suggestions for improvements we’ll still complete the audit and leave it up to you if you want a refund.
  • All client-specific audits and UX scorecards are strictly confidential; they are not included in Baymard’s public benchmark databases or shared with anyone else.
  • As Baymard does not offer any kind of web design service, programming, or sell e-commerce technology, the UX audit will therefore always be a completely unbiased analysis of your site, and not an indirect “sales pitch” for other services. At Baymard our specialization is the UX auditing.

What Some of Our Clients Say about the UX Audit:

Overstock Inc. Logo

“Thanks again for the great work on our checkout project. Our whole group found it incredibly insightful. We’re applying the suggestions you provided to our new checkout design which launches at the end of the month! One of my colleagues was also interested in your group’s competitive expertise with regard to responsive web and native apps.

Harley-Davidson Logo

“We found the audits extremely helpful and validated a number of changes we have been wanting to make or are in the process of making, so thank again for all the great insights.

Columbia Sportswear Logo

“This was indeed very helpful guidance and a very well-documented roadmap for us to fix, validate, organize, collectively understand and continually improve our ecommerce foundation.

B&H Photo & Electronics Corp. Logo

“I can confirm that the list was fully implemented. Every time we put up a change we either A/B test or we watch it very closely to determine that it's doing better and not the opposite. So I can confirm that these fixes have improved our checkout. Thanks for everything.

Bell Canada Logo

“Thank you for the UX audit presentation, it was FANTASTIC. People here are quite pleased and amazed by the amount of work that was put into this.

John Lewis Logo

“Many thanks for presenting earlier. I have caught up with the teams and they all found your audit report really useful and are on board with the suggestions.

T-Mobile / Deutsche Telekom AG Logo

“Thank you very much for the 7 usability audits of our country-specific sites. The audits have provided us with specific and actionable advice, allowed us to prioritize development resources , and enabled us to compare UX performance between the 7 different country-specific sites, and against State of the Art implementations. The audit itself is done really professionally and the recommendations contain actionable and insightful information.

Sears Logo

“Baymard produces some of the most relevant and actionable user experience research available. They really understand the needs of UX and Product Management professionals, and their deep experience in the eCommerce field allows them to offer sophisticated, nuanced insights.

Jarden Consumer Solutions Logo

“Thanks for everything. The audit was extremely useful, I think we have gained valuable insight.

Google Logo

“I just wanted to take a minute to thank you for the amazing work on this audit. You should know that this has been very well received internally and there's a lot of excitement around adopting the ideas you have shared.

Hallmark Cards, Inc. Logo

“The walkthrough today was great. The report was very, very well done and loaded with great opportunities for us to improve our business. I wanted to again express my appreciation for working with us on such a condensed time frame last month. You and your team have been amazing partners to us and we very much appreciate the work, expertise and partnership.

Sports Authority Logo

“Thank you for all the value delivered ahead of our new fiscal years. Your insights not only provided a definitive foundation for our UX roadmap but completely sold our executive team on the value of expert usability insights. Your service paid for itself in a matter of days and ensured all critical gaps will be filled ahead of us running the audit again next year.

Nike Inc. Logo

“Intelligent, consumer-focused insights that are clear and actionable. The team in the room really loved the way the Baymard Institute highlighted the optimizations in the various user experience elements (copy, layout, design, calls-to-action…), from the perspective of consumer struggles. Baymard’s Usability research really complements our other existing research tools.

Office Depot Logo

“Baymard has been a great resource in helping us improve the customer experience. We are continually applying these best practices to our sites.

Etsy Logo

“Thank you. This was an excellent piece of work: professional, thorough, and actionable for the team. We're very happy with the work Baymard has done for us so far, and I hope we'll have the chance to work together again on future projects.

Carnival Cruise Lines Logo

“We like what we are reviewing from the audit - great analysis and feedback.

Fast Growing Trees Logo

“We implemented this [1 of the 15 audit suggestions] and since then we’ve had a 20% increase in warranties added and a pretty healthy average order increase because of that. That was a great suggestion, it hit our bottom line immediately.

Purch Logo

“Really good rundown on all these thing. I definitely think we got a lot of value out of it, and we’re excited to get it all in and do some A/B testing on this.

RepairClinic.com Logo

“Within a very short time Baymard Institute provided 15 clear, useful improvement suggestions for our checkout process. We intend to implement all of them. It’s easy to find companies that offer website improvement suggestions. But, most companies don’t do their homework and don’t provide specific examples of how best to make the improvements. With Baymard Institute, the checkout process suggestions they made were intuitive, specific, and actionable. I highly recommend their audit service.

Nutrisystem Logo

“The recommendations in our Checkout Usability Audit were awesome - well prioritized, actionable and helped us focus on what to optimize. This audit, along with the e-Commerce Usability Reports & Benchmark Databases, are my go-to resources for thorough, insightful information. Thank you!

StickerMule.com Logo

“Wow, this is great! Just reviewed it with the team. It's a huge help and we're excited to fix these issues.

n11.com Logo

“We have worked with a number of third party companies before on various projects/audits, and I can certainly say that working with Baymard was not only a pleasure; but you delivered on time; to the level of depth we wanted; addressing important issues; and answering all our questions; and you did all this for a great price. A big THANK YOU on behalf of N11.

prAna Logo

“Wanted to thank you again for the checkout audit and walking us through the process. It was super helpful and we can't wait to apply the changes to our checkout for a better user experience.

Epicenter Consulting Logo

“Given the tricky science of conversion rate optimization, it is great to know that you are dealing with professionals whose advice is based on solid research. It was a pleasure collaborating with the Baymard team.

SiteOne Landscape Supply Logo

“Baymard recently did a UX audit of our new e-commerce Website. We were very pleased with the results. The report and live review of the findings validated our approach to user experience, and also, we learned a lot about best practices for e-commerce UX. We believe Baymard’s work will help us increase revenue and user satisfaction.