E-commerce isn’t only about optimization and functionality. Copy is still a significant factor in creating effective e-commerce sites, though it’s often overlooked in favor of design tricks or other gimmicks to engage and convert prospects and customers. Don’t be mistaken, though. Copy tells your story. It defines your products. And from my perspective, copy is so powerful that it can actually lift e-commerce conversion rates. Here are three ways that copy can be a hero for your firm:
1. Write for your target audience.
This may seem obvious, but in too many circumstances marketers write to please their brand instead of their customers. By that, I mean they write in brand language that is stilted and crafted to meet standards, guidelines and the CEO instead of appealing to buyers of their product or solution. Copy on your e-commerce site should sound as though the customer is sitting next to you and you are conversing one-on-one. This type of familiar, relaxed tone will pull people in and encourage them to explore your site further.
When you’re writing for your customers, always keep in mind the nature of your product and the type of person making the buy. For example, an electronics business will want to appeal to the logical side of a customer and will do well to present facts, results, specifications, etc. That buyer will be looking for detailed features and performance information which will meet their needs. In contrast, a fashion site will want to reach out to customers with style, trends and pricing information. Each category of buyer will have a definite persona and it will benefit the business to create content in a style that engages appropriately.
2. Choose powerful words and phrases.
As marketers, we can sometimes get too close to our products and the ways we promote them. We’ve become used to the qualities and benefits of the brands we represent and can forget about how amazing they can be for customers. We’re used to talking about technology benefits or medical products or even cosmetics — whatever industry we’re in. That can result in brand verbiage being repeated in lots of content until we don’t even see it or hear the key message.
That can’t continue because customers will notice it. They want to be enthused, but they need you to be excited first. So, step back for a bit and really take in the scope of your brand and what it offers customers. How does it affect lives? Does it help people make easier decisions? Improve health for their families? What about creating more solid financial futures? Or maybe it’s just a killer tuxedo for the big day.
Really look at how your brand delivers and get excited again. And then let that excitement come through in your copy. Use powerful words that evoke emotions and incites people to engage and purchase. Is your line of sweaters the fuzziest, smooshiest way to get through winter? Then say that. Give people the persona of the brand and do it powerfully.
3. Let your customers speak.
One element of your copy conversion technique won’t be written by you at all — it will come from your customers. By sharing customer testimonials on your site, you not only let current customers know that your products are working well but also that they delight customers.
Prospects and customers in the consideration phase won’t always take your word for how great your brand is, so they look to others who have purchased the products, used them and are pleased with their purchase. Testimonials have always had a place in marketing, but social media has made us even more aware of them. Customers can now be easy participants in endorsing brands by sharing, liking and commenting on products. Savvy marketers will take advantage of the influence that customers have on other customers and enable it in their e-commerce initiatives.
Copywriting and e-commerce conversion rates are tightly linked, and using just a few simple tactics can make a big difference in campaign results, regardless of product or industry. Making sure to target audiences appropriately, using powerful words and imagery, and integrating customer testimonials are strong elements for impacting conversion rates. One overarching rule to remember is to always keep the core of your brand — and your brand promise — at the forefront of copywriting and you will be guided appropriately.
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