What are top eCommerce websites such as Adidas, Zappos, Nordstrom, and GoPro doing to increase conversions on their mobile websites?

Inflow, an eCommerce marketing agency, combined insights from their own clients with what they’ve learned from studying best-in-class mobile sites from top eCommerce brands.

Below you will find the top seven CRO trends used by best-in-class mobile eCommerce sites in 2018—as well as four features that are losing popularity.

Popular Features on Mobile eCommerce Sites

These seven features were among the most upward trending across the eCommerce sites reviewed.

1. Merchandise Shown on Homepage

In use on 18 of 20 best-in-class websites


It used to be considered distracting to show products on the homepage, especially with mobile; however mass testing has proven that products promoted on the homepage can sell well when they’re displayed properly.

This year, more best-in-class sites are using space-saving displays showing featured products. It’s common to see a mix of promos requiring lots of horizontal scrolling in addition to vertical-based multi-ads.


2. Sticky Filter/Sort Bar

In use on 7 of 20 best-in-class websites

The Filter/Sort feature is kept at the top of the screen as the user scrolls. This is a brand new trend: no best-in-class site used this feature in 2016.


3. Check for Local Inventory Availability

In use on 6 of 20 best-in-class websites (6 sites not applicable)

The amount of best-in-class sites showing local inventory has doubled this year. Businesses are finally picking up on the fact that this is an important way to connect their eCommerce and brick and mortar business.

On mobile devices, people are often already out and might be ready to head to the store. If they’re out and about looking for a product, there’s a good chance that they want to pick it up in person.


4. Customer Question and Answer Section

In use on 4 of 20 best-in-class websites

Shown alongside reviews, users can ask previous customers about the product. This feature improves sales as long as the user gets their questions answered in a timely manner. One way to ensure this happens is to allow staff to answer questions, as well. This feature is slowly gaining traction as users come to expect this feature and more review software offers it out-of-the-box.



The final three up-and-coming trends are related to the shopping cart and checkout process.

5. Final Pricing Available

In use on 16 of 20 best-in-class websites

The number of sites showing final pricing in the cart has doubled from eight to sixteen since last year. Showing the final price (or as close as possible) increases cart conversion rates.


Even if taxes and shipping aren’t included, all but one best-in-class site at least provides a subtotal below the line item prices.


6. Pay with Paypal

In use on 14 of 20 best-in-class websites

More companies are adding alternative payment options to their mobile sites, including  PayPal, Android Pay, Google Wallet, Apple Pay, etc.

PayPal tops the list of external payment options.


7. Add to Cart Uses Pop-In

In use on 5 of 20 best-in-class websites (5 sites not applicable)

Lightbox takes over the page as a layer when a new item is added to the cart. This is an emerging trend on mobile and desktop sites which allows for cross-selling opportunities. You should consider testing this against your current bag experience.


Down-Trending eCommerce Features

The following four features were less used by best-in-class sites than in previous years. Keep in mind that a downward trend does not necessarily represent a poor feature. In some cases, companies are finding better alternatives to the feature or are prioritizing other things first.

In other cases, such as the “save for later” feature in a shopping cart, it’s very possible that eCommerce companies have yet to find the right mobile treatment and the experiment isn’t over.

1. Save for Later

In use on 6 of 20 best-in-class websites

The ability to save an item in your shopping cart for later purchase used to be a growing trend and is now trending back down.

It’s probably still worth testing “save for later” on your mobile site. For inspiration, check out other sites doing it, such as Room and Board.


2. Prominent Customer Service Information

In use on 9 of 20 best-in-class websites


Down from eleven last year, only nine best-in-class sites prominently display their customer service information.

This trend is unhelpful to users and can potentially harm conversions.

It’s important to note that other sites, such as Zappos, have increased customer service visibility in the cart.

Along with prominent customer service information, only seven sites offer tap-to-call functionality. Most sites don’t want phone calls; however, any phone number should be clickable. It’s just good UX.

3. Promo Code Redemption During Checkout

In use on 7 of 20 best-in-class websites

eCommerce best-in-class sites have moved away from promotion code redemption during checkout process. It’s best found only in the cart where you’re less likely to move users away from the site during the check-out process.


Unless a majority of your revenue comes from coupon redemption, the best treatment of this feature is de-emphasized, such as hidden behind a checkbox or link.

4. One Page Checkout

In use on 2 of 20 best-in-class websites

Last year, half of the best-in-class sites were using a one-page checkout process without an accordion design. Now it’s down to just two.


More sites are using an accordion design which takes better advantage of the limited screen space.



On the rise

  1. Merchandise Shown on Homepage
  2. Sticky Filter/Sort Bar
  3. Check for Local Inventory Availability
  4. Customer Question and Answer Section
  5. Final Pricing Available
  6. Pay with Paypal
  7. Add to Cart Uses Pop-In

In decline

  1. Save for Later
  2. Prominent Customer Service Information
  3. Promo Code Redemption During Checkout
  4. One Page Checkout

With most of these features, the best way to know if they will work on your site is to test them out for yourself. What works for Nike may not work for you. And the other way around, too.

Research: 11 Top Mobile eCommerce CRO Trends from Our Study of Best-in-Class Sites

PS. Contrary to carousels on desktop websites, they do work on mobile. But only if it’s absolutely clear that the element is scrollable.