Is Your E-commerce Copy Holding Back Your Conversion Rates?
Website copy has become a highly underrated tool in the arsenal of the online seller. While a huge amount of emphasis is placed on the technical aspects of your site, from load speed to mobile optimization, web copy is a critical aspect of the sales process as well. As one of the best website development companies in the marketplace, today we are going to share how your e-commerce copy could be holding back your conversion rates.
Why is copy so important?
Most sites have adequate web copy covering everything from landing pages messages to information about the business to discussing products. The important word to remember here is adequate. That means it serves its’ purpose which is to provide information to prospective customers.
But does it sell for you?
Here is what your copy does for you each and every day:
- It helps establish your brand through the tone and style you utilize
- It describes you and your business to customers letting them know who they are buying from
- It sells (or doesn’t sell) products for you by providing needed product information along with how that product will make their lives better
- It drives actions to persuade the customer to make a choice
That is a lot of responsibility to be placed on web copy and unless you have low expectations for your conversion rates the word adequate should not be how you want your web copy described. All of those hours spent working on SEO, creating good backlinks, optimizing your site for mobile and the like are a bit wasted if your adequate copy is resulting in low conversion rates.
What should your copy be doing?
In a nutshell, your copy needs to be the smooth, virtual salesperson that every site needs. With a brick-and-mortar sales operation you often rely on the sales staff to close deals. Think of a great car salesperson and what they convey to customers:
- They talk up the products noting the various features and how they compare or are better than the competition
- They find ways to connect the products to you personally, often relating an emotion aspect such as it being the prefect family car for trips, a great option for adventures or even recapturing your youth
- They sell the brand reminding us of the years in the industry and countless types of awards they have earned from safety to performance
Your copy needs to be doing all of these things as well because of the simple fact that you don’t have a salesperson on the floor to do it for you.
So how can I improve my e-commerce copy?
First things first, plan on using various renditions and then A/B testing to help chose when and where you should make adjustments. Don’t make the mistake of assuming that you need to do a complete overhaul to improve conversions as some areas might be great.
Try writing new variations of copy and using A/B testing to find out what a sampling of your target audience prefers. Remember, copy is being written for them and not you.
- Write for the right Scanning Pattern – Did you know that the majority of people scan web pages with their eyes? It makes sense as a visitor typically is only looking for a few things and doesn’t need to waste time reading every single aspect. That means your copy needs to use good formatting that works well with scanning to attract to eyes to the right locations. Furthermore, studies that track eye-patterns have noticed that on e-commerce pages people typically scan in an “F” pattern on the page which makes it paramount that those types of pages list key item features at the top with a two-column format for pictures and information. Stores like Amazon or Overstock are good examples.
- Use Action Words – Action words help sell because they help turn an emotional response to your copy into action (conversions). Using words like “Risk-free”, “Value”, “Greatest” or “Savings” are great because they invoke an emotion, but you then need to follow that up with the action words that make people call, act now, choose, and make a decision.
- Tell a Story – Storytelling is a powerful way to sell because not only is it very unique and personalized to your brand, but it also fosters an emotional connection to your brand and its values. This is an excellent concept to use on your non-selling pages like the About Us or Homepage. By fostering a connection on these pages you will increase the likelihood of conversions on other pages.
- Write to your Visitors – Not all visitors are the same. You have a variety of differences from basic demographics like age or sex and also personality differences such as the logical buyer versus the impulsive buyer. It is simply impossible to write copy that will resonate with everyone. That means you need to study your core customers and demographic to understand who they are and what they are all about. Then you need to write copy that connects to them and uses the right type of sales technique that applies best to them. For example, if you have a highly impulsive audience then you don’t need to spend so much time on all the details the logical buyer is using to compare your products versus others. Instead you need to focus on the benefits and how getting this item right now will improve the impulsive buyer’s life.
The bottom line is that your conversion rates are a reflection of a lot of things. Yes you need to get people to your site which involves marketing and SEO, and then the site needs to be appealing, load quickly and be mobile optimized as well. But then you don’t want your e-commerce copy holding back your conversion rates because it is just adequate; amazing copy sells products much more easily.
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