8 Product Display Tips To Boost Online Sales
Both in offline and online stores, product placement majorly contributes to retail success. Here are some product positioning tips for online sellers.
1. Make it easy to buy
Categorise products meaningfully to help customers quickly find what they are looking for. Include search and filter tools to allow customers to customise the display. When customers search for a product, recommend complementary/similar items, albeit in a separate section of the screen to avoid confusion.
To assist new customers, Teabox, an online store selling curated teas, displays best-selling and newly arrived products on its home page. It also showcases a “Tea of the Week”.
“Giving new customers an idea of what’s popular and enjoyed by tea connoisseurs and other tea drinkers helps them get started,” says Khilan Haria, Vice President, Product Management, Teabox.
2. Serve up relevant products
Display orders are usually driven by current business priorities. However, a more effective strategy is to serve what customers want, says Mahinder Narang, Vice President, Product Management,fashionandyou.com. That would include items that are currently trending and products that are most relevant to the customer.
“Displaying best-selling products as defined by the product sale rate and recently sold products majorly influence customer perceptions about the popularity and usefulness of products. Such menu engineering grabs the attention of customers and spurs sales,” Narang explains.
Teabox helps customers discover teas of interest through its patent pending prediction engine. Haria describes how: “Customers are taken through a short questionnaire and in real-time matched with a curated set of teas personalised to their tastes. And the recommendations keep getting better month over month as we learn more about our users through feedback on the previous box.”
3. Fully describe your products
Product descriptions are the key to online selling success. Building familiarity with the product positively influences buying behaviour. Essentially, the more customers see and read about the product in question, the higher are the chances of them buying the product.
A simple rule to follow is, according to Haria is: say as much as you can about the product in simple language.
Teabox lists product ingredients and includes vivid descriptions of the product, of the experience including the taste and aroma that a consumer can expect from every tea and explains how to make a perfect cup. It also suggests complements to best enjoy the tea.
“We try to answer questions that most buyers would ask if they were looking at the product in a store; this helps build a connection with the prospective customer as a regular sales person would do,” says Narang. “Essentially, we aim to create a true picture of the product.”
Additionally, we state what value and benefits the buyer stands to gain from transacting on our site, adds Narang.
4. Get your product descriptions right
Shop CJ Network sells online as well as on TV. It maintains an internal quality assurance team to fact check product specifications prior to airing those on TV shows or listing them on the website.
“You must get your facts right. Inaccurate product descriptions become a reason for product returns,” says Kenny Shin, CEO, Shop CJ Network India.
5. Enhance the description with visual and video content
Enhance the display with product images and related useful images.
For instance, a saree display could include photos of different drapes and blouse options. The image of a microwave could be accompanied by close-ups of the inner chamber, the electronic panel and the rear view.
“Video content is naturally associated with TV but it has its uses for online selling too,” adds Shin.
To continue the microwave example, you could add cooking demo clips that show potential customers how to use the appliance.
6. Include customer testimonials and reviews
Customer testimonials and/or customer reviews can add value to product displays, provided they don’t read like cooked up messages.
“Customers showering lavish praise on a product can leave prospective buyers cold,” cautions Shin.
Some ideas for useful testimonials: get a customer to talk about how he was pleasantly surprised about a certain product feature he did not know existed. Or, have a customer say how useful the product was that other family members for one too. Or, ask a customer to share the market research she conducted prior to buying the product and explain why she chose your product.
If you run promotions and contests, include a couple of testimonials of contest winners, replete with their names and addresses to build credibility for the offer, suggests Shin.
7. Customise displays to drive sales
Personalise experience for customers to drive sales. This entails serving different products to different customer segments based on their past buying behaviour.
“Use advanced web and customer analytics to segment customers, identify product attributes that are important for each segment, and serve products each segment is most likely to take up” says Narang.
Teabox personalises the experience based on a number of factors including the geography of the customer. “Customers get to see products that are popular with other similar users and the eventual idea is to take the personalisation from a user-segment level to an individual level,” says Haria.
8. Make offers based on real-time data
Strategically positioned products boost impulse buying in brick-n-mortar stores. Examples are displaying cookies and other goodies near check-out counters.
Online stores have an advantage in boosting impulse buys by having access to customers’ recent browsing and purchase history. Here’s how:
“There are several avenues for an online store to show similar and complementary products based on what a user is browsing and making a purchase. Most online stores allow customers to review their order before checking out. On that page, you could serve up last minute recommendations on complementary products,” suggests Haria.