Recently, we looked at how downplaying a coupon code box during the checkout process can improve the performance of top metrics.

This week’s winning test involves hiding website content of a different sort to see the impact.

wtw_on-hoverA specialty retailer has been using hoverboxes to communicate core product details to visitors when they mouse over product images on the homepage and category pages.

An upside: Showing this basic info as early as possible could pull shoppers into product detail pages, and one step closer to making a purchase. A downside: Hoverboxes display automatically as visitors mouse over them, which might not be everyone’s cup of tea (especially with website traffic from smartphones and tablets on the rise).

Curious about whether its visitors saw these hoverboxes as helpers or hindrances, the retailer ran an A/B test to gather some insight.

Visitors for whom the hoverboxes were hidden performed better, driving increases in conversion and time on site. In addition, the website’s bounce rate dropped. Based on the feedback, the retailer has disabled this functionality so its shoppers can go back to some good old-fashioned clicking.