Simply listing a product on your website isn’t going to cut it; you need to sell it on the features and benefits it will provide to your customer. This is a sales process that has been successful since the dawn of time, from street vendors to telemarketers. Personally, I love window shopping and I’ll often walk around for hours simply ‘looking’ at nice things, but I rarely find the temptation to buy unless I’m presented with two scenarios:
- I have an actual need for the product, or
- I’ve dealt with a very convincing sales person
The first is going to be your easiest sell, the customer knows what they want and you just need to make sure that they buy it from you. You do this by improving your search ranking and making your site as user friendly as possible. All you need to do with this customer is to make sure they find you, entice them to click on your site, make the site easy to navigate so they can find what they’re looking for, and get them on that path straight to the check out. The second situation is a little tougher. This consumer may be simply ‘having a browse’, maybe it’s their lunch break and they’re more interested in their Pablo Picante burrito (you haven’t lived until you’ve tried one of these) than making an actual purchase; maybe they’re walking the burrito off and browsing via their iPhone or perhaps it’s a Friday evening after a very long day and the last thing they want to do is to think about doing anything. This is when you need to start selling. It’s similar to the clown street performer you have no interest in until his act starts, sure he looks interesting – but he’s not doing anything to draw you in so you quickly move on. However, once he starts the act and catches your attention, you hang around; then before you know it you’ve made a commitment and you can’t leave without throwing a few coins in his hat for the service provided…even if you didn’t ask for it in the first place.
So how do you draw them in?
As your store is online, your products are all just pictures on a computer screen, so to the customer – they don’t feel real, until you make them real. To do this you really have to tell a story; tell the customer how amazing this product/service is, tell them what it will do for them, tell them why they need it, tell them that they need it. For example, if you’re an online clothes store and you want to sell a red cashmere cardigan, it’s not as simple as uploading a photo of the item. You must create interest. So instead, you add in a smiling model, a great description, details of the returns/exchange policy and a prominent ‘buy now’ option. By doing this, you personalize the product, you ease any doubt in the mind of the online buyer and you then direct them to the checkout. The same applies to most products, regardless of industry.
“I have always said that everyone is in sales. Maybe you don’t hold the title of sales person, but if the business you are in requires you to deal with people, you, my friend, are in sales.” – Zig Ziglar