Why do I Need a Category Structure?
An eCommerce site is essentially a collection of products available for sale. To help visitors to your store easily find the products that they are looking for, it is essential to group your products together into categories so that buyers can see the complete range available for a product that they are interested in. To take an offline example, all soaps in a supermarket will be stocked in the same aisle or shelf. Imagine how tough it would be for a consumer if half the soaps were stocked in one location and the other half in a completely different location!
A well designed Category Structure helps buyers easily find the products that they are looking for and therefore improves the chances that a visitor to your store will actually make a purchase.
How Should I Design my Category Structure?
Let us take the case of a well known brand like Levi's. Levi's sells a large assortment of products (Jeans, Shirts, Sweaters, Shoes, Belts etc.). One option for Levi's is to create a category structure based on the products that they sell. A second option is create a category structure that starts with who that buyer is. In this approach, Levi's could a category structure which starts with Men, Women and Kids. This example illustrates often there is no single right answer when it comes to category structure design. Ideally you should put yourself in your buyer's shoes and choose a structure that is based on how the buyer thinks. The goal is that the consumer should be able to find the products that they are looking for with the least amount of effort.
A Category Structure is a hierarchy - It starts with a Top Level Category (which is typically displayed on your home page). The Top Level Category further contains multiple levels of sub-categories. To illustrate this let us assume that you sell Clothes, Home furnishings and Shoes in your Kartrocket store. In this case your Top Level Category (Level 1) could be:
- Home Furnishings
The 'Clothing' Top Level category could be further sub-divided into the following Level 2 Categories:
Similarly the 'Men' Level 2 Category could further contain Level 3 Sub-Categories as follows:
- Formal Wear
- Casual Wear
- Party Wear
- Ethnic Wear
Now let us take an example where you sell Mobile Phone Cases. In this case, the buyers are likely to have a specific handset in mind while looking for a case, therefore creating a Category Structure here would involve creating Top Level (Level 1) Categories by brand names and Level 2 Categories by Model names.
Creating the Category Structure on Kartrocket
Step 1: Go to Catalog -> Product Category
Step 2: Click on Add button on the right corner
Step 3: Start in the 'Standard' Tab and enter a Name and Description for the Category you want to create.
Note - If you are creating a Top Level Category, you need to check the Top option at the bottom.
Step 4: Choose a Parent Category
- Click on the 'Advanced' Tab
- If you are creating a Top Level Category, leave the Parent Category as 'None'.
- If you are creating a Sub-Category at any level choose the parent category where you want to create this Sub-Category.
Step 5: Enter SEO Information
The next 4 fields allow you to enter SEO (Search Engine Optimization) information.
- Meta Title - The Meta Title is a phrase that acts as the title of your category page. This title is shown in the tab of the browser where the page is opened and is also used when a page is bookmarked.
- Meta Tag Description - The description that you want to show when this Category page shows up for a search on Google and other search engines
- Meta Tag Keywords - These are the Keywords that you want this page to show up for when someone searches on Google and other Search Engines.
- SEO URL - This is a simple and descriptive word or phrase that will get appended to your top level domain to form the URL (address) of this particular category page. Entering this field is not mandatory - (the Kartrocket platform can automatically generate this). If you choose to enter this field manually, please make sure all the SEO URLs are unique (across Product Pages, Category Pages and Web Pages etc.)
Step 6: Other Settings
- Status - If the Status is turned OFF, the category will not show on the website.
- Sort Order - This helps you to specify the order in which categories will display on your Kartrocket store. You can also change the sort order by dragging and Dropping Categories / Sub-Categories to the desired position in the main Catalog -> Categories view.
- Note: In order to display more than 2 level of categories on the menu, you need to create TOP MENU