We have all clicked on a website that should have been incredible, only to be let down. In today’s market, having a great product or service is simply not enough — your website needs to match the quality of your product or service.
Look around, and pretty much every website worth its salt is designed beautifully. There are so many exceptional tools that can bring amazing design within reach of almost any website owner. Many e-commerce storefronts lose sight of the fact that while they are out to sell products, user experience is just as important in the buying process. Frankly, many sites are severely lacking when it comes to design. Cumbersome navigation, large images that load slowly and a lack of call-to-action buttons are some of the biggest design flaws we see on a regular basis.
It takes a careful eye to flesh out that perfect balance between what looks good and what works. Don’t fall into the trap of just listing products; ensure your product feed is coupled with dynamic design — design that is functional as well as beautiful. For instance, call-to-action buttons are extremely valuable and can help site visitors who are almost tripping over ways to contact you. Design is not only a way to make a site visually appealing; it must enhance conversions.
As much as design can attract attention, superior content should provide the perfect complement. Content can be a mystery for some companies — they don’t see why it is needed on a website designed to sell products. The key to gaining an audience is establishing a community around your product. To do that, you should have something to say. Blogs, FAQ pages and information-rich landing pages are all exceptional ways to interact with your community.
A while back, I was looking through some of our e-commerce client projects to see what was effective and what could use work. What I found was that the sites with the most dynamic content had the most engagement. The thought behind this is that more engagement is equal to more sales.
Content is not always words on the page, but videos, infographics and many other shareable media bits. Leveraging your brand to create content that sells can increase visibility, which, historically, is a great way to increase sales. You can have the greatest product on earth, but if nobody knows what it is good for, you might as well close up shop.
Product Descriptions That Actually Sell Products
Product descriptions are one of the most overlooked pieces of content on e-commerce websites. A solid product description creates a deeper understanding of your product, invites engagement and provides an opportunity for your audience to connect.
Many product descriptions are nothing more than a list of attributes, and that is just fine for your highly educated shopper, but reaching the casual buyer who is undecided should be your goal.
To entice those casual shoppers, a product description should be long enough to engage, but short enough to digest; enough info to list the features, but brief enough to painlessly convince the casual buyer that they need your product. Look to the value the product can provide, and clearly state that in the description, interpreting for your clients why the features make this a superior product.
Product descriptions are also ideal for use in a social media campaign like a Facebook store. Leverage the power of social media for your business: Add products, and make it easy for your followers to buy what they need.
Leverage The Power Of Video
Videos of your products can be an incredible way to introduce potential customers to the advantages you offer over the competition. Integrate videos into your homepage, FAQ page and even individual product pages. One advantage of video is that it can be used for so many more campaigns than just website content.
For instance, we like to integrate our videos into email campaigns. We have found that this is a great way to engage with clients and give them some information they may find useful, even if they do not decide to utilize our product. Videos are ideal when describing your products, and according to research, most consumers would rather watch a video than read a lengthy product description. While this may sound contrary to what I said about content earlier, the platforms for videos and other types of content can be different, and I believe you need both for effective marketing.
Putting It All Together
Building a great e-commerce website is an amalgamation of design and content, all connected seamlessly through multiple channels. A great product or service will only get you so far, so it’s critical that your brand strategy is bulletproof for your e-commerce business.
Conversions are the ultimate goal, and keeping the overall strategy in mind when you are setting up your website will benefit you in the long run. Conversions depend on engagement, and in order to increase engagement, a solid content strategy should be implemented from the beginning.
In today’s online marketing world, an e-commerce site has little chance of simply being discovered on its own. The clients that we’ve had the most success with have all embraced a wide range of marketing opportunities. Set up your website with more than a singular focus on products, and you will likely see a difference right away.