What are we going to talk about?
- What does an ordinary, ineffective product page look like?
- Product descriptions
- Related content
- It does matter where you place the CTA
- Provide enough information
- Take photos of everything you can
- More advice on navigation
- Do not forget about sharing!
- Or about opinions
- Cross-sell and up-sell opportunities
- Product comparison and interactivity
- Our last and most important piece of advice
What does an ordinary, ineffective product page look like?
Let’s start where most people finish. By a simple search you can find dozens of ecommerce stores where a product page is not more than a medium quality image of the given product and a short list of its most important parameters.
These are pages that look like the first page of the users manual – which you usually read through only after having purchased the product.
They provide only the most basic information possible, in other words, they will be useful only for those who are looking for something in particular, those who already have a strong intention to buy. If somebody cannot decide in a DIY store what kind of screw they should buy for the already planned project, this information may help them. However, if they are only thinking about what to do in their spare time over the weekend, pages like this have exactly zero use.
There are a lot of problems with a single poor quality photo of the product as well, but we will discuss that in detail later. Let us rather look at the total image.
Such a product page is naked, plain, it does not try to grab the attention of the potential customers with anything, or to “create” their purchasing intention. It is ineffective, basically non-existing from a marketing point of view.
In this article you can read in detail about what it is that is missing from such a page, what is wrong in the first place, and what are the best practices according to which you can increase the success of your product pages several times over.
This is one of the most ignored elements by e-merchants.
This is somehow understandable, since uploading individual product descriptions to the database in an ecommerce store selling several thousands of products is an incredibly time-consuming and energy-intensive task.
On the other hand, you should know that this is a task that you have to accomplish.
Let’s make it clear:
You do not need to write a short novel on each and every screw (just to stay with our example): you should aim at a more concise but a definitely unique description in this case.
If your capacity or your budget is limited, you should start having powerful descriptions of the products that bring you the largest profit or of those that you want to sell the most.
Think of these pages as if they are playing the role of landing pages in case of every product. You must convince everybody who has not arrived on the website with a specific and definite purchasing intent that they need to buy the given product.
And you will need excellent copy to be able to do that.
Even in case of the most insignificant object you can write something creative, something that makes it attractive.
What are you supposed to write about a pair of white socks? ‒ you may ask.
“Nothing can come between your feet and your shoes. Except for this pair of socks.
It cares about the health and comfort of your feet.”
How to sell a toolbox?
“It has everything your son will need for DIY projects.”
Use longer descriptions, do not write only one or two phrases about the product being durable, inexpensive and coming with warranty.
Make the purchase personal. If you know your target audience, you have an idea about why people in your audience would like to buy what you are offering. This is what you need to have in mind and tell a story. In which they can be the heroes.
[bctt tweet=”For effective sales your best tool may be storytelling.” username=”aionhill”]
We have already wrote about why it is useful having a blog in your online store. Obviously, there will be content elements in the blog which are integrally linked to some of your products.
Let us take for example the DIY kit. If you want to sell it to fathers who have sons, you can create a blog post where you post step-by-step guides on the assembly of simple toys, which you enrich further with images.
You should definitely post this entry on the data-sheet of the product as well: this way the users can get further reinforcement by seeing the tools in use.
Act the same way with relevant videos: how-to videos work extremely well, even those that simply show creatively how the device works. The best example for that is the campaign of the Blendtec company that has been running for a long time, thanks to which they are selling their blenders with a huge success – if you do not know what we are talking about, you can see this video titled Will it blend? and enjoy watching how an iPhone is blended.
It does matter where you place the CTA element
The CTA (Call to action) button has a single function: to make the customer click on it to add it to the shopping cart.
A layman could think that it does not matter what kind of button you use and where it is placed. However, the truth lies very far away from that.
Its appearance may be very diversified: you will need to fine-tune the shape, the colour and the text by running A/B tests. All we can do is give you some good advice in connection with that:
- Make it a contrasting colour so that it helps separating it from the background.
- Inform the user about what is going to happen. Be precise: “Add to cart” is better than “Continue” because the customer will know exactly what happens after clicking on it.
- Red and orange colours effectively create a feeling of urgency, blue builds trust – be smart when using the colours and create the appropriate feelings in the visitors so that they are more willing to click.
You will have to try it for yourself how it works perfectly – however, we can give you quite precise advice concerning the placement.
The more complex the offer, the later you will need to try to have the customer open his wallet. For this very reason, landing pages that offer services of several millions of dollars are sometimes extremely long, still, you will find the CTA button only at the end: because lengthy convincing is necessary.
On the other hand, if you optimize your product page well, you will not need such lengthy convincing.
It is best if the CTA attracts attention, it is highly visible and well identifiable right when the page is loaded.
Provide enough information
The price and the main characteristics of the product are not enough – they provide only the bare minimum.
First of all:
Never ever forget to display all the costs – which usually means the delivery costs – on the page. Do not try to sell a pig in a poke because the majority of cart abandoners drop the purchasing process after having reached payment because they realize how much they have to pay only in the very last phase.
The products currently in the cart, as well as the total amount of the purchase, should continuously be displayed on the page.
It is also useful if you display how many pieces of the product are left in stock, since you can urge the purchase with that, you can show that there are not many left of the product thus encouraging those to click who would not like to miss the product because of their hesitation. (You can read more about handling customer hesitation in this article: 5 proven strategies to overcome buyer hesitation)
Inventory data, continuously updated based on the purchases, should not be very much highlighted on the page, it is enough to put the number of pieces discreetly but clearly legibly under the CTA.
Take photos of everything you can
One of the biggest mistakes you can make is that you do not use enough images. Do not get this wrong: you do not have to fill the product page with images.
On the other hand, take photos of the product itself from all possible angles. Make good quality, high-resolution images, spend money even on a professional photographer.
At this point we have to mention navigation.
Indicate it clearly to the users that they can look at the product from another angle if they wish to, and preferably they should always be aware of which angle they are “using” at the moment. In an online store you cannot take the product you are about to buy in your hands, you cannot touch it or go around it, even though this would be an important part of the commitment process.
At the same time, if you allow the users to take a good look at the product, you can get closer to that experience. You should indicate it clearly as well if a product is available in several colours or combinations.
That is even more relevant in case of products where it is important to see the details: give a chance to the users to be able to examine everything they want to in the images.
Additional advice on navigation
If you want to display more information on your product page, do that by not filling the page too much. Different sizes, colours, constructions can be hidden behind drop-down menus as well.
The design should preferably be minimal and simple: the only thing you want to draw attention to is your product – and the CTA after that. If anything not facilitating the sales distracts attention, you need to simplify further.
Do not forget about sharing!
Display social networking opportunities on the page as well: the users should be able to like, tweet or share the given product if they wish to. When Facebook introduced the Like button that can be integrated into exterior pages, they were dreaming of a future where people will inform their friends about what kind of products they like with the help of that button – you can see that this is exactly what is happening.
If the product is special enough, you can even link an individual hashtag to it (this is the motto marked with the symbol #). Its advantage is that it is supported by various platforms, you can find hashtags on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram (among others).
This not only makes the product more well-known, but it is useful from other points of view as well. If you are selling shoes for example and you link a hashtag to them, you can easily find the photos of the users on Instagram in which they are wearing your products – you can give rewards for that, or you can even ask for approval to be able to use these photos.
You can advertise much more effectively with content created by the user. You can even display it on your product page because they are more authentic than having models wearing your products.
…or about opinions and reviews
You can benefit an awful lot of positive opinions of other users. As we have already talked a lot about the use of these in one of our previous articles (12 proven tips that can raise ecommerce store conversion in 2016), now let us see how exactly you can build these in.
A live stream of comments may also be useful, however, you will certainly have to pay attention to moderation – even if your product and your service is perfect, there may be people commenting with bad intentions (they are known as trolls in the relevant literature), and you will also have to apply filters so that the automatic spam comments are not displayed.
So it may be a better choice to drag the positive ratings and comments from the social media in the form of screenshots, or to copy them from the incoming emails, and so on. Of course you should ask for the approval of the author of the testimonial to be able to do that, because these are authentic if a name comes with them as well. And it had better be a real name, not John Smith with a stock photo.
Cross-sell and up-sell opportunities
If somebody buys a product from you, why would they stop there?
Usually not because they would not feel like buying something else as well (since you have already convinced them to do so), but because you do not put the offer in front of them.
You definitely know the joke about the salesman who sold a boat, fishing equipment, camping equipment and a bunch of other stuff to the husband who originally went to the store to buy tampons. This is the perfect example.
You will have to find the offers that work well in the given moment. Cross-sell is one of the methods for doing that.
If you are selling clothes for example, after the product is added to the cart, you can present an offer on an article of clothing that goes well with the one that has just then been purchased. Additionally, you can display similar products on the data sheet as well.
You can offer the given products in a package, you can indicate that they are usually purchased together – if someone buys a canoe, remind them that most people also buy paddles to it.
The point of up-sell is to basically sell the same thing but more of it, bigger of it. Of course, you should do that bearing in mind the needs of the users as well. If they purchase a lot of a product that is running out, ask them whether they want to buy them in advance, since the product is durable and if they purchase more of it, they will get it a discount.
If your visitor has added something to his cart, your job is not to direct him towards payment right away. Make him stay on the product pages, find the products that he may also need, given that you will need much less convincing here.
You can read more about web design in terms of cross-selling and up-selling in this article: 9 Product Page Layouts That Will Boost Your Sales With Up-selling & Cross-selling
Product comparison and interactivity
Provide opportunities to your customers of comparing the various products! They should not need to go to a third party, to a price comparing page over which you have no power at all. You should provide them the opportunity within the system of comparing two products based on any kind of attribute.
Many people desire such a function not because they want to find the cheapest solution – they are rather looking for a construction ideal for them. If someone wants to buy a laptop, they need to consider a great deal of characteristics within a given price range, which means that being able to do that quickly at the very same page instead of having to navigate through dozens of pages while taking notes, may be a huge advantage.
By the way: the laptop is an excellent example for how you can profit from interactivity. If the users can assemble the products for themselves, a certain bonding is born in them: if someone spent an hour choosing the components of the computer perfect for them, they will not at all be willing to leave their “creation” since they feel that they already have something valuable.
No matter how clear, beautiful, interactive and mobile-friendly your site may be, if one condition is not met, nobody will purchase anything from you.
And that is…
Never, in any content should you say or suggest by any number or word something that is not real: you should meet the real needs of the users by providing real solutions.
If you follow that path, you can already start creating product pages where it is simply impossible not to purchase.