Tradition - Information Overload?


(typical product page from a traditional e-commerce platfrom like Amazon.com)

  • As an average user I look at less than a third of information, and read through even lesser (super long title and extensive product description).
  • Lot of elements that may make me navigate away from the page, or distract me from the primary purpose of the page – which is to well – display the product and check-out this product asap.


Concept - The clean look.


(a product page concept by a dribbble user)

  • Looks lesser like a cluttered version of craigslist, product forms the central theme of above the fold content.
  • Still conveys most (if not all) useful information.
  • A bigger / higher res image by default rather than on hover makes the product self describing.

Q 1) Why do these "concepts" remain mere concepts in mainstream even though they contribute towards a better UX?

Q 2) If one was to discount the fact that orthodoxy provides convenience to users, and rely solely on UX pros/cons, would you start designing a product page by :

  • Cleaning up the amazon look or
  • Adding more critically relevant information to the concept look
  • 1
    Yes they're visually cluttered, but Amazon display critical pieces of information for people looking to buy piece of apparel over the internet. The concept page displays does not take this into account, and only displays attributes that would be useful if you were actually in physical store, or you are repeat purchaser of the product.
    – Jung Lee
    Dec 12, 2015 at 1:45
  • I like the informations of amazon. I wouldn't buy a piece of cloth without knowing the fabric. I wouldn't buy a book if I don't get page amount or press opinion
    – BlueWizard
    Dec 12, 2015 at 20:43

2 Answers 2


Amazon has figured out that most people think information lends credibility to the product. J. Peterman agrees, they (he?) basically make up stories (fluffy information) to build up some kind of product credibility. Check out Nordstrom's Ugg boot - more refined and cleaner than an Amazon page but still lots of information.

I think the information glut is necessary to make up for the lack of physical contact with the product. This is salesmanship in a new arena. What works now won't necessarily always work.

would you start designing a product page for a startup by :

a) Cleaning up the amazon look or

b) Adding more critically relevant information to the concept look

and why?

it depends on the brand. Amazon aggregates a million brands and J. Peterman is a singular brand. J. Peterman should put its brand on every product page because it's part of the product but Amazon's brand is a service, not a product, so the brand must take a back seat to the product.


There's two ways to look at it (well, I'm sure dozens of ways, but let's stick with two):

  1. Do what Amazon does. They've already figured this all out.

  2. Go with the more minimal solution as, afterall, this is a start up and getting an Minimal Viable Product out the door is likely the first priority.

The first option is likely a safe one if doable, but not likely all that doable when we're talking about any company other than Amazon. A startup simply doesn't have the data and users to justify the type of site that Amazon has built which is heavily dependent on user reviews and recommendation engines.

So, #2 it is! I do think you need to consider adding a bit more information than is currently shown, but it doesn't necessarily have to be exposed directly on that initial view.

  • my question wasn't about amazon in particular or about the feasibility of doing that look for a startup, but more about the UX pros/cons of doing so. Dec 11, 2015 at 20:54
  • @user3210476 it's be hard to give any specific list of pros/cons without a whole lot more context and details. That said, realize that there's a lot more to Amazon's UX than 'the look'. But also note that Amazon puts a ton of time and money into their UX.
    – DA01
    Dec 11, 2015 at 21:05
  • So, to answer the question directly: I don't know if Amazon's pages are distracting, but they are the way they are because they work for Amazon. If they were detrimentally distracting, then Amazon likely would have changed them.
    – DA01
    Dec 11, 2015 at 21:07
  • It looks a bit overwhelming to a new user, specially with half a dozen widgets/buttons. And I suspect it works for them because the bloat built up very gradually, and users have become comfortable with it over time. Dec 11, 2015 at 21:13
  • I think that's a valid theory. It could be bloat, though it could be validated content as well. Regardless, I think #2 is where you really want to go given that you are a startup. Start with the MVP. Build up as you validate the need.
    – DA01
    Dec 11, 2015 at 21:18

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