September 17th, 2014 | 2 MIN READ

Storytelling Through the Category Page

Written by author_profile_images Linda Bustos

Linda is an ecommerce industry analyst and consultant specializing in conversion optimization and digital transformation.

When you think of storytelling in an online store, what comes to mind? Product page copy? Embedded video? Blogs? Look-books?

Certainly not on the utilitarian category page...

But I found a fantastic example of storytelling right in the category results page on, under its 13 Things feature. The page features several collections of "13 things" organized around various stories, for example:


Boom, summer’s over. It’s the perfect temperature for outdoor ventures like skateboarding, hiking, biking, or splitting wood. Folks are starting to bring out the layers instead of sweating through three t-shirts before lunch. Most snowboarders are starting to feel an itch in their knees, knowing winter is closing in (or maybe that’s just arthritis). Either way, it’s time to get outside and enjoy life with friends and family. Here’s a list of 13 Things that will keep the guys comfortable through short days, dark nights, and frosty mornings.

When you roll over the thumbnails, they "flip" like cards to reveal one-sentence stories about each product, along with complementing images that convey the "story." Seriously, they are all brilliant.

Interspersed between products are photo slideshows that reinforce the stories - from scenic shots to "people like me" enjoying the activities a typical Burton fan enjoys.

Experience-driven commerce tells a story. Contrast Burton's approach to the typical category page that shows only thumbnail photos, product names, prices, and maybe star ratings. It's persuasive, engaging and fun.

I'll be sharing more examples of experience-driven commerce and storytelling across touchpoints at this year’s Annual Summit, with special guest Kevin Lindsay from Adobe. Breaking Bag: Reinventing the Customer Experience at Every Touchpoint will be held Tuesday, September 30 from 11:45-12:15 in the Expo Hall. (Details here)

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