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Online Content: Why It Fails and How to Fix It

Posted by on March 10, 2016

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In our experience, most online content destined for retail sites fails because brands don’t spend enough time building strategic product pages that serve online shoppers through all stages of their digital journey.

Avoiding the four common mistakes below can go a long way toward meeting customers’ needs whether they’re actively researching products or just clicking through a social media link.

Mistake #1: Your product page content is too basic

types of online content: enhanced and basicPut yourself in the place of an online shopper. Does a one-sentence product description on Amazon give you the information you’d need to hit the “Buy” button? Remember, online buyers can’t touch or feel your product like they could in a store.

The fix: Invest in online content

Create a rich online shopping experience with enhanced content.

In an enhanced product description, text emphasizes the important features and benefits of a product using bulleted lists and comparison charts.

Attractive images of products and photos of people using the products inspire customers to feel more comfortable about their purchase.

Strong layout including company logos, video, and interactive features connect customers to your brand as a whole.

Mistake #2: Your product page isn’t working with your marketing teamonline content and product seasonality

Today’s omnichannel shoppers research products by bouncing from ecommerce sites to social media to brick and mortar stores. That’s why it’s crucial for products to remain identifiable and dynamic in each place.

If a product page seems out of date or lacks the detail or emotional connection shoppers found in other channels, they are more likely to abandon the sale.

The fix: Add strategic, up-to-date content

Take advantage of online retailers, like Amazon, that allow you to refresh product page content on a regular basis.

If your product page is aligned with your latest marketing message it will be relevant to your customers, providing them a cohesive digital experience that boosts their confidence. And confidence in a product is often all that is needed to close the sale.

Mistake #3: Your product page isn’t responding to behind-the-scenes feedbackonline contnet as a work in progress

A published product page is not a finished masterpiece.

With more and more information available about how customers interact with your product page, publishing it should be a midpoint in your content strategy.

The fix: Create a content cycle to revisit your content regularly

Rethink your content cycle to build in time for content analytics after a page is published.

Analyze and evaluate your pages’ performance on a regular basis. Does that title work? Could the bullet points be more effective?

Amazon and Google also have tools to help you develop a SEO strategy. Make sure you know the keywords that will drive your customers to your page every time.

At content26, we use analytics to pinpoint content changes that result in increased sales.

Mistake #4: Your product page is too confusinglinksys router on Amazon

It’s all too easy to bury an online shopper in information they don’t need or don’t have time to figure out. Just as too little information will leave them questioning, too much information will cause them to move on.

The fix: Know your audience

Savvy companies craft unique product pages for each important online sales channel.

For example, Newegg.com caters to gearheads who live for technical information. Consider this paragraph about the MU-MIMO technology found in this Linksys dual-band router:

MU-MIMO builds upon existing broadcasting principles–such as spatial multiplexing and beamforming–to deliver a higher overall throughput for today’s multi-device networks. The result is a fast, fairly distributed connection across all of your devices.

Amazon takes a different approach to the same product:

MU-MIMO technology handles simultaneous streaming on multiple devices without interference or slowdowns. The combined 2.53 Gbps Wi-Fi speeds** wipe out annoying buffering and enable faster downloads.

The Takeaway

Retail content fails when it doesn’t give online shoppers the information they need to make an informed buying decision. Successful companies forgo the “set it and forget it” approach to content, and create strategic, dynamic content that responds to shoppers’ needs.


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