The Importance of product content – online and offline

According to Conversion XL insights, 36% of consumers spend on average 30 minutes on comparing products before deciding to buy, with 51% visiting more than 4 sites to research and compare. What this means for resellers and brands? That you not only need to capture buyers’ attention in those 30 minutes with the means of extensive, rich and accurate content but you also need to provide as much information as possible – to ensure buyers do the research on your channels instead of landing on a competitor’s page.

Standing out with the right product content in reseller channels has never been as vital as it is now. At Detail Online, we specialise in just that and are here to help by providing you with a tool that enables you stay on top of your product visibility at all times.

1. Including (and highlighting) the right content

Companies are all striving to create the best content. But only few are succeeding. Why is creating content that boosts buyer intent so difficult? In many cases, it’s actually wanting to do too much with product content.

Here’s an example: Imagine a pillow reseller advertising a pillow as being phenomenally soft and fluffy. Another reseller advertises a pillow that has a density of 40 and is ideal for back sleepers. Which pillow would you be more likely to purchase based on this information?

Using abstract terms such as phenomenal to describe a product doesn’t provide useful information to the buyer. Even if the first reseller would provide lot’s more content telling a story about the softness of their pillow, buyers are in most cases still primarily interested in facts. If those are missing or go under in a stream of not helpful content, you will miss out on sales.

Do: Think of the main selling point for a product and highlight it clearly (e.g. for shoes “stain resistant leather”)

Don’t: Go wild with your copy before vital product information is clear

2. The musts of product content

No matter what you are selling, certain content is simply a must these days. Buyers use your information to compare with competitors. Making that comparison as easy as possible for them by providing all the vital information is your best bet in getting their trust. If you’re a brand selling products in online reseller channels, you know that the possibilities to present your product are often limited and different depending on the reseller (read more about this in our guide “How to gain control of online resellers”). However, there are things you should always strive to include:

  • Descriptive title that helps the buyer find your product. This includes listing important search terms and keywords.
  • High-quality product images. Several, showing different angles or even user cases.
  • A clear product description that includes: specifications like weight, colors, materials, measurements, add-ons; where the items are made, brand, special features etc.)
  • Rich content such as product video(s) or animations that show the item in action.
  • Customer testimonials and reviews, if possible. This is often not up to you, but your resellers. Making them aware of the importance of displaying reviews can help.
  • Availability – how many items are in stock and how long is the expected delivery? Detail Online alerts you as soon as your in-stock levels drop on a reseller site so you can take action.

You could add many more things to your listing but should always cover the above.

3. An even better product description

Speaking of a great product description, there are certain questions it should always answer:Include certain keywords to make sure buyers find your description in the first place (think SEO).

  • Highlight certain product features that make your product stand out amongst competitors. Is it extra colorful or more sustainable? Buyers will want to know.
  • Ensure information is concise, easy to digest and in the form of bullet points.
  • The more pictures, the better. Thing angles, color variations, size references and user cases.

4. Customer reviews – your best friend for gaining buyers

Customer reviews are often dreaded by businesses, but they can make or break product sales. Encouraging buyers to leave reviews can be the thing that makes all the difference in the consideration phase. You may want to run campaigns with your resellers to increase reviews. Having many reviews helps buyers trust your product and even negative reviews are appreciated for pointing out flaws in times of intransparency.

Do: Monitor if you have ratings and reviews in place for your products and make sure you and resellers are handling them with care. Respond where applicable and pay attention to poor reviews. Did you get one that mentions long delivery times or the product not matching its description? Those are the ones that should alarm you to update product information.

Don’t: Never ask resellers to filter comments. This will remove the trust-building effect of reviews. If you want to do something about negative reviews, moderate them by replying.

Monitor if you have ratings and reviews in place for your products and make sure you and resellers are handling them with care.

5. Why video content is worth its price

Today, we are constantly bombarded with moving and flashing images. All major brands have made good use of this trend by incorporating video and animated content into their communications generously. This means buyers are used to being able to experience things beyond the constraints of your standard image.

Asos, a major fashion retailer and reseller in the UK, was one of the first to introduce video content for all their clothes – from underwear to dresses – and established themselves in the international market because of this. Buyers appreciated being able to see the flow of a dress or the cut of a jeans in movement and flooded the retailer with orders. Other retailers quickly followed suit.

And while video content can be expensive to produce, it’s highly shareable (great for marketing) and appreciated by customers with studies showing that it can boost conversion rates by up to 80%.

If the reseller platforms you are selling on allow video content, it is certainly worth prioritising video production.

Video content is worth its price
Video content is worth its price

Selling online via resellers has lots of potential but also means you need to pay close attention to your product content across many different platforms. Product content is king.

It’s not just about making sure that you provide the best content to the reseller. With constant changes happening online, you need to stay on top of it. Are resellers actually using the content you have provided to them? You might be surprised to learn that over 20% of all e-commerce products have been found with inconsistent content online, the big culprits being contorted or incorrect images as well as misleading or missing product information.

At the same time, 98% of online shoppers say that missing product information has kept them from making a purchase in the past. And as we learned earlier, many spend time comparing your products with competitors’, so even small discrepancies can cost you a sale.

Curious to dive deeper into this topic? Download our guide to learn how brands monitor their product content in online reseller channels.

Originally published Mar. 18, 2020, updated May. 11, 2020
Joakim Gavelin
Joakim Gavelin
CEO, Detail Online

Joakim has spent 25 years in merchandising and conducting audits in physical stores, and for the last 5 years he has been applying the same principles online. The tactics include promotion, presentation, visibility, stock situation, position on shelf, share of shelf etc., which all affect conversion in e-commerce.

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Download our guide to learn how brands monitor their product content in online reseller channels.