Today, tailored content is king.
More than 2,500,000,000,000,000,000 bytes of data are made or posted online every day? (source)
Yes, and every moment someone spends looking at a screen the possibility some bit of content will catch their eye increases. Simply dishing out more won’t automatically get you more customers. Customers are smart, so be smarter.
Break through the clutter, if you want to be a customer-centric brand.
In this post, we’ll explain how to tailor your content to improve sales, grow market share, and increase revenue in 7 easy to understand steps.
But first, you need to know…
Why Tailored Content?
Did you know that 90% of all online data worldwide was created in the past two years? (source)
With all that data, your content is unlikely to appeal to customers if it doesn’t speak directly to their needs. Everyone is looking for product information and content that will benefit them and their needs specifically.
Tailored content is all about personalization.
Make your business one that’s concerned with satisfying the particular needs of your customers to hyper-charge the customer experience you provide. Tailored content is all about delivering experiences that speak directly to each individual customer.
It’s the perfect way to deliver solutions that customers aren’t yet aware of.
Personalized content is the heart of the new age digital revolution, helping digitally-savvy shoppers discover what they want, when they want it, and how they want it, with minimal effort.
Personalized product content helps customers find their way by placing them at the center of the digital shopping experience.
Tailored content facilitates the buyer’s journey, because the process will make more sense to your customers. When you tailor messages to customer behavior, demographics, and searches, conversions become more likely.
Tailored content increases engagement by speaking directly about the personality of the ecommerce retailer.
This deepens the relationship your customers have with your brand. First time shoppers will want to stick around if content speaks directly to them. Content that is relevant to the problem or need they have does this.
Start with research and ask yourself…
1. Who Are My Customers?
Tailor content won’t suit your customers’ needs if you don’t know at least as much about them as they know about themselves.
Buyer personas are generalized descriptions of people who make up your ideal market. But the trick is to make them as detailed as you can.
How is it possible to make buyer personas both general and detailed?
By including as much information about them as possible:
You might think it’s most important to know what your customers want to buy, but don’t forget about why.
For example, are they buying for themselves, to give to others as a gift, or for further resale? You need to know whether your business is specific to different demographics or does more business on holidays.
Knowing your customers inside and out speaks to your brand’s authenticity.
You need to know their reasons for buying from you and what doubts they have about you. Also, you need to find out which media they use regularly so you can make sure you’re reaching them.
Find all this information by:
- Surveying your customers directly
- Studying their past purchases
- Examining their account setups
- Looking at your site analytics
- Going through their profiles
- Soliciting feedback
- Reviewing and responding to comments
Two ecommerce retailers may be functionally identical, but appearing exactly the same will spell ecommerce suicide.
What’s even more important is to come back to buyer personas from time to time. The audience you had when you started your business is unlikely to be the same group of people you’re selling to today.
Who are you selling to now?
Your target audience is at best simply older than they were when you got started. Do they like the same things and find information in the same ways? Alternatively, they might be a completely different group of people, with preferences you never even considered.
Who is my competition?
You should routinely visit your competitors websites and social media pages.
This is a good way to stay on top of current trends and gauge your competitiveness. Knowing what your competitors are doing allows you to spot gaps in your service and content to fill.
It’s a great way to come up with new blog ideas.
There are companies, like Buzzsumo and Ahrefs, that provide products like consolidated lists of content by URL and numbers of social media shares. However, doing the research yourself comes with 2 distinct advantages.
- It’s free.
- You are likely to find more than just what you are looking for.
Doing research yourself is by no means easy, but the price is right, and who knows what you could find? Because research companies provide a specific product, they may not be set up to get you that little something extra you can find by accident yourself.
Developing your brand has to do with communicating something to your customers that your competitors are not. Your tailored content needs to strategically highlight how what you offer is both different and superior to other companies in your space.
Tie functionality to benefit to sell your brand.
Directly trashing your competition with a long, complicated list of everything you offer that they don’t is going to turn potential customers off. Instead, provide easy to absorb examinations of how your products’ features translate into concrete benefits for anyone who buys from you. Back these up with customer testimonials and reviews.
Bring customers to your website with…
2. Dynamic Landing Pages
How customers find your site is equally as important as them finding it in the first place.
You already know who your customers are and where they exist online. Your landing pages need to reflect this origin. Each link you share should lead to a landing page personalized to the interests and needs of the specific persona you target in that space.
If a potential customer clicks one of your links and doesn’t immediately find what they want, guess what they’re going to do?
Reduce your bounce rate and demonstrate your commitment to your customers at the same time with personalized landing pages. Dynamic landing pages can be set to display a wide variety of different information based on how each visitor gets there.
Set landing pages to change by keyword searched, too.
You don’t always have to build content from scratch to cater to different market segments. Making a few small tweaks to the targeted content you already have is easy and far more likely to pay off than presenting everyone with the same message. Also, if you want to increase lead generation, it’s important to tailor calls-to-action by persona.
When are your offers being made?
There are several time-related factors to keep in mind, if you want your content to resonate more deeply with your potential customers:
- Are your social media posts timed by channel to reach your target audience?
- Have you set up automatic emails that trigger when a purchase is made or by length of time since then?
- Do you collect personal information about your customers, like birthdays or work anniversaries, which also trigger emails?
- Is your systems designed to leverage Christmas or another holiday when your sales tend to spike?
- Do your products have a long history or have any of them changed significantly over time in ways you can highlight in your content?
- Can you create or participate in events that would allow you to highlight your company and products?
You need to offer…
3. Personalized Website Design
Reduce the likelihood your customers will abandon shopping carts.
Your website design and layout can be more instrumental in keeping customers glued to your website than you think. This is especially true when websites are designed with customer preferences in mind. You should offer a persona-centric website experience to make customers feel comfortable and fulfill their expectations.
Personalization of your homepage will increase online sales.
It’s important that you craft your website’s design with your buyer personas in mind. The more your website gives customers what they expect to experience, the more time they will spend there. As a prospect spends more time on your site, the chances of you making a sale increase dramatically.
Your website needs to be packed with…
4. Personalized Product Descriptions
Descriptions are the virtual equivalent of a sales pitch.
Product descriptions answer customer questions and arm them with the information to make informed purchase decisions. With the help of your buyer personas, you can tailor product descriptions to your customer.
Under-promise and over-deliver.
Many sites miss from the beginning by writing specifications instead of true descriptions. Specifications do not communicate experience, because they focus on what a product is, not how it will solve their customers’ problems.
Customize descriptions by including only what customers care about.
Just because you think something is important, doesn’t necessarily mean your customers will, too. Help customers by replacing bland repetitive language with specific helpful information. Also, make suggestions that make sense with what they want to buy.
Less is more.
This is especially true for those well-versed in scanning pages. You can attach more detailed descriptions to address further concerns. Also, use easy-to-understand grammar and vocabulary.
Revisit your content regularly.
It’s going to take Google about 35 weeks to rank your pages. Once you’ve identified content that’s off or stale, update it as quickly as you can. Remember, just because that blog post of yours popped when you wrote it, doesn’t mean it’s going to forever, so update anything that looks dated.
Your descriptions need to feature…
5. Rich Product Images
Ecommerce’s one drawback is its lack of immediacy.
Your customers are not going to be able to pick up and hold the products you’re offering, so your pictures have to do the work. All product details must be clear, so the same hand-held feeling comes through.
Include high resolution pictures taken from all angles.
This will help clear up any misgivings customers have about buying from you. Make sure you have a relevant picture for every product variant, and that you show the product being used and in tandem with associated products.
Here, it’s better to provide more than not enough.
People often abandon purchases because they can’t reconcile product images against descriptions. They need to see highly detailed images, so they don’t feel the need to examine the item in person. Including a variety of close-up images of your products will dispel customer doubts.
Pay close attention to…
6. Customer Ratings and Reviews
Publish all the reviews you receive, whether positive or negative.
When you get negative ones, reply courteously and strive to bridge the service gap. Often times, if you turn bad reviews around, you can turn customers into brand advocates.
Negative reviews are golden opportunities to turn a prospect around.
Have a personalized system for handling complaints and negative reviews. Address each one in a personal manner to show prospects you hear them. Do this even if you don’t immediately have a solution for them.
You can also find out about potential customer questions on Q&A sites.
Use sites like Quora and Yahoo Answers to identify the questions your potential customers have before they even find your website. Make sure that if you use these sites for marketing purposes, you state your intentions clearly and at the beginning of your post.
Nothing erases brand authenticity faster than deception.
These websites are yet another way to find out about and stay ahead of changes in trends. The Internet isn’t doing anything if it’s not changing all the time. Research is the only way keep up.
Monitor social media to demonstrate customer satisfaction.
You could either manually publish positive customer comments and tweets or set up a stream to bring them in as you “like” them. Use these to add that additional pop to your landing pages, as well.
Don’t forget to…
7. Tailor Content by Specific Channel
The average Facebook user is 40 and a half years old. (source)
But is that the same for Twitter, Pinterest, and LinkedIn? Definitely not. Each channel you sell on is already attracting a certain type of visitor, so you can only disregard those differences to your detriment. New channels are coming up and older channels are going out of style, so make sure to figure out a way to stay on top of those changes.
The average age of customers buying on Amazon is 37.
It’s not an overstatement to say you’re unlikely to enjoy the benefits of personalization unless it’s applied across all digital channels your customers interact with. Documents, text, images, manuals and other business tools inform your customers about products and services. All these must include tailored content.
Bring It All Together
Nobody’s going to read your content if it’s not informative.
According to McKinsey and Company, the 3 Cs of customer satisfaction are consistency, consistency, and consistency. In practice, the easiest way to say this is that you have to make promises you can keep and then keep them. (source)
Customer experience is as much a promise as high product quality, good prices, and fast delivery.
Personalized content is your path to improve overall customer experience and overcome the constant stream of new competitors. This, of course, relates positively to sales, because personalized content warrants continuous consumption, keeping customers coming back to your site.
Now that you know why product content needs to be tailored to boost sales, click here to see what Catsy can do for you.