With the explosive growth of eCommerce, it’s easier than ever to put your small business offerings in front of a large group of prospective customers. Drop shippers make it easy to obtain a catalog of items that a merchant can sell, and they provide all of the images, product descriptions, and price points . . . usually in a format that doesn’t require a lot of work to integrate the information in your platform of choice.
Unfortunately, there’s a downside to receiving all this information from a drop shipper. Many small online stores end up using their provided product descriptions, which means their content is up against an army of other merchants carrying the same wares, using the exact same product descriptions and content, just in a slightly altered look for their site. When Google and other search engines see this content, they bury the newest results to promote the older content, which will be a massive problem for a new merchant who is trying to create a presence online.
So how does a merchant combat this army of replicas? How does one stand out among a crowd of hundreds, if not thousands, of duplicates?
The answer is in rewriting the descriptions that your manufacturer or drop shipper provides. Although this can be an extremely time-consuming process (depending on the number of products in your store), writing effective product descriptions can mean the difference between success and failure online.
Here are a few tips that can help you fine-tune your product descriptions and target your customers:
Know your audience. Try to imagine your best customers when you write your product descriptions. Because you’re writing as a salesperson, you’ll see better results if you communicate with your target audience on their level. Writing clearly, concisely, and specifically will naturally lend itself to creating keywords and key phrases within your product descriptions. Original content will help customers find you more easily on search engines.
Communicate . . . QUICKLY! Think of your shoppers as if they’re speeding down a freeway. At 65 mph, they don’t have time to read a large block of text. You need an attention-grabbing start that engages your readers and creates enough interest for them to continue reading. Consider beginning a product description with a question that gets them thinking . . . and hopefully keeps them reading. Billboards offer great examples of this type of content.
Remember that shopping is an emotional experience. If it weren’t, you’d never hear the phrase “buyer’s remorse.” Once you have a reader’s attention, it’s important to appeal to emotion first. Craft a story that offers detailed examples of how the product you’re describing is going to save them time, money, stress, and so forth. Find the specific pain point that this product will address, and offer logical support for the feelings your prospects are having toward purchasing it.
Recognize that spelling, grammar, and wording DO matter. The most convincing product descriptions use a powerful story with adjectives that reinforce the feelings your shoppers are having about purchasing. Consider using Thesaurus.com to help you find convincing adjectives without being too repetitive. And be sure to check your copy for any misspellings or grammatical errors. Errors in product copy are easily noticed by customers, and they can reduce confidence in your store as well as your products.
Writing convincing and accurate product descriptions is the best way to stand out in a crowd of competing messages, so it’s important to get your message out there in your own voice, and then reap the rewards that you covet . . . getting noticed and generating sales.
Want to boost your customers’ confidence in buying from you? Consider these tips:
Provide answers to Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs). Although many customers prefer to shop online rather than drive to a brick-and-mortar store and interact with a salesperson, they’ll probably have questions about the products they’re considering. That’s why it helps to include a link to Frequently Asked Questions—and their answers—on your product page. That way, you’ll be able to address your customers’ questions as they think of them.
Leverage the power of product reviews. Although you might be able to craft the most intricate product description in the world, you probably won’t be able to come up with every use that your customers find for your product. That’s where product reviews come in . . . they help to tell prospects how other customers are using the product—and how satisfied they are with it.
When you’re selecting a product reviews option for your site, make sure you use a solution that:
Allows you to approve or deny a review before it posts to your site.
Provides an option to email your customers (a set number of days after they purchase) and request a product review from them.
It’s important to note that negative product reviews aren’t always a bad thing. If you’re getting a lot of bad reviews for a particular product, you should definitely remove it from your catalog. But one or two reviews that aren’t overflowing with love for a product can help lend some credence to the integrity of your store. Plus, people are more likely to buy from a site that’s honest with them. Remember . . . shopping is an emotional experience.
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