It's not just older people who get confused by too many online shopping choices

The ability of the brain to filter out visual and audible distractions and to handle multiple tasks simultaneously declines with age. This is something we’ve written about in our book Marketing to the Ageing Consumer. But new research suggests that all consumers can be confounded by too many choices.2013-12-05_11-10-16

Online shoppers love seeing images of products, but when the number of choices is high, visuals become confusing and presentation of the options in text form helps consumers make better decisions. A high number of visual options can also prompt consumers to give up trying to choose: Asked to select among 27 types of crackers, participants in an experiment were 5 times more likely to pick “none of the above” if the choices were presented visually rather than in words. Text prompts a slower, more systematic mental-processing style, according to the researchers reported in the HBR Blog Network / The Daily Stat.

As always, simplicity is a key criterion for being Age-Friendly.

Source: The “Visual Preference Heuristic”: The Influence of Visual versus Verbal Depiction on Assortment Processing, Perceived Variety, and Choice Overload