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Ecommerce Guidelines: Category Pages Naming & Copy

Guidelines 110-114

Ecommerce Best Practices » Category Landing Page » Appearance » Category Naming & Copy

In order to point potential customers in the right direction, you’ll need to name categories and subcategories accurately and precisely.

It’s easy to throw a title on a group of products without much thought. Overlooking this seemingly small aspect can have big consequences, however. Category names need to accurately represent all their products.

The next few guidelines provide insights to avoid overlooking small details when it comes to naming categories and subcategories.

2 guidelines for ecommerce category landing pages naming and copy:

  1. Category names should never suggest overlapping products (e.g. “lawn care” and “lawnmowers”).
  2. Category names should be descriptive and common (“about us” beats “company experience”).

Guideline #115. Category names should never suggest overlapping products (e.g. “lawn care” and “lawnmowers”).

For the sake of clear site structure, avoid ambiguous — and worse, overlapping — names.

BodyBuilding.com has a category completely devoted to women. However, this creates some confusion when browsing the Shop category. Are these products for men only?


Guideline #116. Category names should be descriptive and common (“about us” beats “company experience”).

When creating category/subcategory titles, keep your ultimate goal in mind: To effortlessly guide users to their goal.

Do your titles quickly communicate the right message? While it might seem fun, avoid “fluffy” names and go for simple and straightforward.

If you use card sorting, ask participants to create titles for product groupings (categories). Analyze all your participant data for the most common titles, use these.

For selling highly technical products, TigerDirect manages to find clear, simple names for categories and subcategories:

Some things were abbreviated in ways that I would not understand. Some stuff was a bit too categorized.

I also appreciated that the wording of categories was more tailored to the customer and how a customer sees it than how the business views their items.

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Ecommerce Best Practices » Product List & Search Results Page » Appearance » Design