A lot of marketers are guilty of telling their customers about every feature and benefit that their product has. I mean, why wouldn't you? These features can sometimes be very impressive and have potential to get your user interested in the product. But what if I told you that's not necessarily the best approach?
Product pages are the gateway to your brand. They should both provide visitors with compelling content and behave like good marketing. However, product pages struggle to easily communicate why people should buy your product, often being more akin to sales pitches than content designed to inform.
Pinpointing the specific areas you don't know how to improve is a great way to understand where your product needs improvement.
Don’t just list the features — show how they benefit your customers.
The best salespeople are those who can quickly and effectively demonstrate how their products or services meet the needs of their customers.
This is especially true when it comes to selling something as complex as an online course or software package.
So, how do you make sure your potential customers understand what makes your product unique? How do you show them how it will benefit them?
One way would be to simply list all of the features. However, this can leave out key elements that might be important to your audience — especially if they’re not experts in your industry and don’t have time to read through every page of documentation.
You’ve got a product or service that you want to sell. You need to convince people that it’s better than what they currently have, and the only way to do that is to show them how it helps them.
If you want to sell your product, then you need to show how it solves a problem for your customers. For example, if you are selling a new TV on TV shopping channel QVC, then you need to demonstrate how the screen on your TV is brighter than other TVs. Or if you are selling an iPhone 5 phone on a website such as Amazon, then you might want to show off how it has better battery life than other phones.
The same goes for any other business — if you want people to buy from you, then they need to see how buying from you will be beneficial for them in some way.
Once you know what your customer needs and how your product meets their needs, you can begin writing their ideal experience. Be sure to explain why someone would want to use your product in detail, including how it will improve their life and make things easier for them.
Lead with the customer’s story, not your own.
When you're pitching a new idea to your customers, it's tempting to focus on your product and your company. After all, you've worked so hard to get them excited about what you have in store, why not share it?
But when it comes to customer success, it's actually more effective to focus on the customer's story.
When you do this, you'll be able to tell your own story in a way that resonates with your audience.
As a business, you have to be able to answer the question: Why should your customers want to buy from you?
You can’t answer that question by telling them how great you are or how much money you make. You have to show them how great you are, and how much money you make.
Most start-ups do not have an answer for this question. So they focus on their own story instead of the customer’s story.
People don’t buy companies; they buy products and services. If your product is good enough, people will buy it even if they don’t know about it yet. But if your product is not good enough, no one will ever know about it!
Once you have convinced your audience that you understand their problems and that you can solve them, then it’s time for them to hear about your company. Start by telling them about what makes your company different from other companies in the industry, and then share how those differences will benefit their businesses.
Directly relate features to benefits.
Features are the things we like about a product. Benefits are how the product will make our lives better. The best way to show how a feature fits into the overall context of a product is to directly relate it to the benefits.
For example, if you're making a comparison between two products, you can say: "Product A has these features, which we love and which add up to its benefit:..."
This is much more effective than saying "Product A has these features, which are supposed to make your life easier." You don't need the benefit right away; you just need to know what it is. So put it in your opening sentence or paragraph. It's not enough that you have one good feature — you have to show how it relates directly to the benefit.
In conclusion, features are the things that make up a product. Benefits are the reasons why you should buy this product.
Use before and after examples where it makes sense
It's important to include before and after examples where it makes sense. For example, if you are talking about a website redesign, show three pages from the old site and three pages from the new one. If you are talking about an app redesign, show screenshots of the old version and two or three screenshots of what it looks like now.
It's also important to use screenshots because they can help illustrate your point. For example, if you are talking about how a certain feature will make your product more appealing to customers, show an example of how well it works in practice (not just an idea).
Break down the benefits for each audience segment that you’re selling to
The first step to creating a great product page is deciding what benefits you’re offering. This can be hard, especially when you’re selling complex products. What do you mean?
For example, if you are selling a product on the Amazon marketplace, and you have a customer that is in their 40s, then the benefits of your product might be:
- "I’m old enough to remember when I was in my 20s."
- "I can finally get some peace and quiet."
- "My kids don’t want to help me anymore because they are too busy with their own lives now."
- A client selling to a group of parents with children under the age of 12. This is a very broad audience segment, but there are still some common benefits that are great to highlight. For example, perhaps you can highlight how your product is safe and tested for use by kids.
- A client selling to an audience of business professionals who want to improve their productivity and focus. They may also have a specific need that your product solves. For example, they might be using email too much, so they want something that improves their email efficiency.
- A client selling exclusively to men who are interested in improving their performance in the bedroom. You can highlight all kinds of benefits here, including ways that your product can help them improve their performance through increasing blood flow or improving muscle strength and endurance.
For example, if you’re selling online courses to people who want to improve their writing skills, you might start with a list of what they get from your course:
- A better understanding of grammar and spelling
- The ability to write a more engaging email or blog post
- A boost in confidence in their writing abilities.
These are examples of how you could structure benefits into different sections of your product page. You don’t need to be exhaustive, but try to cover all the bases.
There are many benefits to selling your product to each audience segment.
Familiarity with the product: Most of your customers will buy from you because they know and trust you. That’s why it’s important to sell to them in such a way that the customer feels at ease buying from you.
Competitive advantage: The more people who know about your company, the more likely they are to buy from you. This is especially true when there are other competitors who have similar products but who aren’t as well-known or trusted by customers.
Brand image: If your customer has heard negative things about your brand, he may be less likely to buy from you because he doesn’t want to support something he perceives as bad. This will affect both short-term sales and long-term loyalty if he hears negative things about your brand on a regular basis (e.g., through reviews online).
Word of mouth: Word of mouth marketing is important for any business; however, it can be especially powerful when customers feel connected with other consumers who have purchased from your brand in the past or shared their experiences with friends and family interested in the same brand.
If you're going to write product copy that sells, you need to understand how to talk about the benefits, not the features. Most marketers and copywriters still don't fully grasp the concept of talking about benefits versus features, but it's an important distinction that can dramatically improve your conversion rates.
We found that when you talk about benefits and make your audience like you, they will trust you. And when people trust you, they're more likely to buy from you. One last thing: This post was written for conversion copywriting. That means the product descriptions include an offer and a call to action. The tone of these pieces is a little different from other types of sales pages; we still want to avoid hard-sell tactics, but we want to close the sale faster so we can move on to the next sale.
In the end, your product page will have a stronger value proposition if you focus on the benefits for the customers, as opposed to all of the features. Doing so can often lead to more sales and a more positive experience for your visitors.