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Ask the Experts: Home Decor and Furniture Retailers

Reading Time: 10 mins
By Published On: July 30, 20200 Comments

As Aussies remain inside during the pandemic, the popularity of homewares has gone through the roof. So, how do these three retailers rank from leading e-commerce experts?

Shoppers are redecorating, updating their home office and keeping themselves occupied during lockdown. We sat down with e-commerce experts, Alita Harvey-Rodriguez, the Managing Director at MI Academy, Kelly Slessor, the Founder and CEO of Shop You, and Jane Magoffin, the Senior Account Manager at Reload Media, to examine and break down the good, bad and the mediocre.


Temple & Webster

As one of the market leaders in Australia, Temple & Webster is a retailer that understands its customers. It was established in 2011 and continues to maintain great service across the country.


Home Page

via Temple & Webster



Jane Magoffin: “Where Temple & Webster’s homepage really shines is the experience across mobile. With so many users researching home decor products on their phone, it’s pivotal that this is easy to navigate for a user. The experience is what you’d expect of a best practice retailer with a large volume of products; they’ve got a clear offer/promotion front and centre above the fold, followed by individual modules showcasing the key product categories (e.g. Armchairs, Wall Art, Cushions and Throws), to help users navigate through the many products.”

Kelly Slessor: “No white space between elements, list format is great for navigation but doesn’t showcase the products clearly on the homepage.”

Alita Harvey-Rodriguez: “Great homepage. Fast loading everything you need, subscription points are all consistent (usually they are all over the place with inconsistent messaging, trust markers from TrustPilot. However… I think I saw this at least once every test… Sliders! The click-through rate is extremely poor. A study of a home homepage with 3.7 million visits over six months found only one percent of visitors clicked on any link within the slider… Focus on your main priority. Like a sale first.”


Product Pages



Jane Magoffin: “One of my favourite features that Temple & Webster embodies, is their product review systems when buying furniture it’s a strong selling point to see user-generated content of real customers who own that piece of furniture and how they styled that room, Temple & Webster does this well.”



Kelly Slessor: “Huge range of product images (13 images) and great size easy to see the product in detail on mobile.”


Alita Harvey-Rodriguez: “Love a product page with a video! Temple & Webster have great product pages. Lifestyle photos for inspo, multiple product angles, BNPL options, reviews front and centre.”


Checkout Page



Jane Magoffin: “The checkout page was easy and fast, with only a few clicks to get to the billing section which is great. Having the PayPal checkout button in the cart area is a great feature as well. Most consumers that have a PayPal account will find this easier and quicker to checkout with the click of a button. It’s also clever to have the initiate checkout button directly above some positive customer reviews for reassurance.”

Kelly Slessor: “Checkout is broken into four sections, with good use of chunking, providing a clear, defined journey. However, there are multiple clicks to purchase which may lead to an abandoned cart.”

Alita Harvey-Rodriguez: “Nice and easy checkout, a cheeky ‘Would you like fries with that?’ moment before you hit checkout to push up the AOV. One thing we always see adds to abandoned carts a lot is calculating shipping at checkout instead of on the product pages.”


Temple & Webster Desktop Speed Test

via Pingdom


Would you shop with this retailer? Why / Why not? 

Kelly Slessor: “Yes, there’s a great range of products.”

Jane Magoffin: “I’ve purchased from this retailer a few times, the range of selection, quick checkout system and in-depth product information makes it easy to complete a purchase.”

Alita Harvey-Rodriguez: “Yep, their customers love them, they have a great selection to suit any style. Their reviews have images that help build confidence too.”

What are some ways this retailer is succeeding in its design?

Kelly Slessor: “The ability to scroll left to right on popular products.”

Jane Magoffin: “Temple & Webster are succeeding by adding the one-percenters that make a difference to a customer’s experience. With having such a large volume of products it’s easy for users to get lost or overwhelmed in a site. Temple & Webster aid this path to purchase by including predictive site search, similar items and extensive filtering options (Style, Reviews, Shipping Dates to name a few).”

What are some ways the retailer can improve? 

Kelly Slessor: “Simplifying the experience, personalising it, improving the site speed, using natural language for search.”

Jane Magoffin: “Temple & Webster are great at showcasing product tagsand& filtering options. I’d love to see an option to browse via style categories from their top navigation, this would help me research extra purchases that fit my style and aesthetic and potentially upsell me.”

Alita Harvey-Rodriguez: “Overall Temple & Webster have a great site. I’d definitely kill that slider and start using dynamic content based on behaviours on the home page instead.”

Do you think this retailer is one of the leaders in Australia? Why?

Kelly Slessor: “Currently outperforming some of the largest homewares brands in Australia.”

Jane Magoffin: “In the furniture space, I feel Temple & Webster holds one of the more superior website experiences adhering and setting the bar for best practice in user experience. [It does this] by implementing measures of trust (such as real photos, reviews, testimonials) throughout the customers any interactions on their path to purchase.”

Alita Harvey-Rodriguez: “They are definitely a trusted brand. Nice work.”



Brosa is a multichannel retailer that has provided Aussies with art-inspired furniture and decor. With three showrooms across Australia, this retailer is design-led and reduces strain on the environment.







Jane Magoffin: “Brosa’s homepage immediately gives users a push into taking an action which is an important trait in user experience. Straight away you’re faced with options to call a stylist, find a physical location, have a virtual consultation, or browse one of their top product categories.”

Kelly Slessor: “Great imagery on the homepage, but the fonts on imagery are too small to read.”

Alita Harvey-Rodriguez: “Alright! Someone got my message about sliders on the home page! The home page is focused on the sale and uses GIFs to show different products to inspire your shopping adventure. I do think some more social proof for this brand could go a long way as well as trust markers like shipping or returns info in easy icons.”


Product Page

Jane Magoffin: “Their product page depicts some rich information with detailed & visual product descriptions, it’s also very clear the personal approach this brand emits with many of their call to actions being ‘We’re here to help’ and ‘Call us’.

Kelly Slessor: “The images are quite small and are made for desktop. Action icons are close together leading to mishits. Users have to scroll to the end of the page to see product details.”


Alita Harvey-Rodriguez: “The view at home feature is something the competitors in the road test miss out on. I’m not sure how the table I was viewing ended up on my roof though?! These pages are trust markers and loaded shipping price upfront. Get reviews on this page ASAP. The hierarchy of content on this page could use a review. It’s a bit all over the place and could distract the shopper.”


Checkout Page


Jane Magoffin: “A feature that I’m a huge fan of, when talking about checkout CX, is the upsell techniques. Brosa does this well by showcasing a visual timeline with a ‘You’re $X away from getting free delivery’. This has been shown in many tests to have a direct impact on your average order value across a site.”

Kelly Slessor: “The checkout is clean and simple. But [Brosa] could possibly reduce the number of forms fields, and ’email my cart’ is distracting, which could lead to an increase in cart abandonment.”

Alita Harvey-Rodriguez: “Another cheeky ‘Would you like fries?’ with that moment to boost AOV! There is a lot going on here, heaps of things to fill out that seem unnecessary – like the delivery cost, it calculated on the product page and it says there is a flat fee on the checkout? What do I do?”


Would you shop with this retailer? Why / Why not?

Kelly Slessor: “Yes, [due to its] social proof and great engaging imagery.”

Alita Harvey-Rodriguez: “Beautiful products, I want a lot of them in my house now! I found the shopping process was a little frustrating. Especially on the product and checkout page. Ultimately the products are stunning and I’d shop here on the site patiently.”

What are some ways this retailer is succeeding in its design?

Kelly Slessor: “Clean imagery coupled with design inspiration.”

What are some ways the retailer can improve?

Kelly Slessor: “Speed, and increase its fonts on mobile.”

Alita Harvey-Rodriguez: “Simplifying the product pages and re-evaluating the content hierarchy.”

Do you think this retailer is one of the leaders in Australia?

Alita Harvey-Rodriguez: “Absolutely stunning products! The view at home is a huge help and I think many should follow in these steps! Now I just need to figure out how to get my table off the roof?”

Brosa Desktop Speed Test

via Pingdom



Zanui is an online leader for Aussie homewares. Established in 2011, it has continued to provide the trendiest furniture for Aussie online shoppers. The company is now a part of Marlin Brands, which houses more than 18,000 retailers across Australia and New Zealand.


Home Page





Jane Magoffin:  “One area you’ll notice Zanui doing really well, is tailoring their homepage to what device you’re on. The experience for mobile is slightly different from the experience on a desktop, and rightly so. With smaller fold and a clear product category breakdown and filtering.”

Kelly Slessor: “Image navigation on the home page is clear and well designed.”

Alita Harvey-Rodriguez: “Nice clean sleek homepage design and good navigation. I love that it’s split between homewares and furniture. Although they went in for the pash before taking me out on a date! What I mean is the pop up showed up within five seconds of landing on the site. Now, this has either been tested on optimised or this is WAY to fast in our relationship. We find we get better conversions on the product pages for database sign-ups and conversions.”

Product Page


Jane Magoffin: “The product pages from Zanui does a great job of including written product descriptions (known to help with search engine optimisation), as well as live stock updates and shipping quotes on each product page.”

Kelly Slessor: “Two pops up on mobile product page can be distracting, but there’s great product imagery.”



Alita Harvey-Rodriguez: “Ah! Going in for the pash again only two seconds after landing on the product page. Chill! What about a subtle fly in from the right instead? More UGC (User Generated Content) would go a long way for the Zanui product pages.”




via Zanui


Jane Magoffin: “Zanui offers a simplified checkout being only three steps from your basket. With this path to purchase is short, quick and enclosed experience (no menu bar). This is adhering to conversion rate best practices.”

Kelly Slessor: “Checkout is broken into three sections. Autofill address makes form completion easier. Too many clicks may leave to cart abandonment and busy pop-ups.”

Alita Harvey-Rodriguez: “Phew! Yay, the checkout carried through my postage location and est shipping costs. Something that we’ve been trialling with a lot of our retailers is making the coupon code section smaller so that shoppers without code don’t go wandering off to find one and forget to come back. It’s helped reduced abandoned carts in every trial we have run.”


Would you shop with this retailer? Why / Why not?

Kelly Slessor: “Yes, [it offers] good imagery and a great range of products.”

Alita Harvey-Rodriguez: “Cool stuff, great prices. I’d shop here but I think I’d be on and off the site checking out reviews to make sure it’s all quality.”

What are some ways this retailer is succeeding in its design?

Kelly Slessor: “The ability to scroll left to right on popular products.”

What are some ways the retailer can improve?

Kelly Slessor: “Speed and fewer clicks to cart. [Another way to improve is] integrating a ‘buy now’ button.”

Jane Magoffin: “An area that this retailer could further their user experience could be by including customer reviews, and visual features and benefits of their more frequented products.”

Alita Harvey-Rodriguez: “Search should be easier to find. We find on almost all occasions people who use search convert 300 percent more than non-search users and more UGC on all pages, build trust.”

Do you think this retailer is one of the leaders in Australia?

Alita Harvey-Rodriguez: “I think they have the bones of a great online retailer. Everything is always an evolution! I look forward to seeing how they grow and change.”

Zanui Desktop Speed Test

via Pingdom

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