Camping offers an unparalleled opportunity to experience the Great Out-Doors. How does the novice prepare for adventure?
In-store interviews with experienced campers revealed that they shopped for gear in preparation for a trip.
Surprisingly, specialty retailers often offer little or no guidance to the folks going into the wilderness for the first time who are shopping online.
Campmor, Eastern Mountain Sports (EMS), The North Face (TNF), and REI are among the major players in this space. Their websites vary wildly in the breadth and depth of their offerings and their presentation:
|Tents & Shelters
|* Eastern Mountain Sports
|** The North Face
There is little correlation between the number of products offered and their organization, filters or categorization. Heuristics site-wide and categorically vary tremendously.
Campmor's heuristics are ... challenging:
The EMS guide highlights five (5) tent features. But it does not explain how to choose among the 300+ tents they have on sale.
REI has the most comprehensice guides by far -- but they are not readily accessible.
"Expert Advice" is available from the 'supra nav', Camp & Hike expanded Top Nav, or on the Camp & Hike landing page.But the user must scroll through 42(!) articles to find "How to Choose Tents for Camping."
Yet none of these guides offer specific product recommendations.
Chuck and Carla are thirty-something Williamsburghers planning a honeymoon camping trip in August.
They like the outdoors but do not have any camping experience. They are shopping for the gear they need for a successful trip.
How might we improve these campers' outcomes and REI's bottom line by better matching campers' needs to suitable products?
"Expert Advice" is one of the hidden gems on the REI site. By putting contextual advice at the product level, we can position this information:
A prototype of the tent module is shown below: