What's your name?
Before getting into PDP optimization let’s walk in the shoes of a typical shopper:
As a marketer if I could pick just one focus area it would be PDP optimization. The product page is where the “moment of truth” happens.
Visitors engaged on the product page are telling us, “I see all you have to offer and this, right here, is what I’m most intrigued by.”
Shoppers enter your site looking to buy one item. Therefore, as far as they’re concerned, your entire site is one product page.
HOW TO THINK ABOUT YOUR PDPs
The purpose of the product page isn’t to impress your competitors or win design awards. The singular goal of product page optimization is to get new visitors to buy.
I love and have huge respect for, old-school direct response copywriters like Joseph Sugarman. People like Joseph don’t care about awards. They wrote copy for effect. They crafted sales pitches for … sales.
YOU HAS ONE SHOT
Databox did a survey of marketers and found that the average percentage of new visitors on a site is 68% (source). This means if you don’t convert the visitor on your site right now there is a 68% you’ve lost them forever.
Don’t blow it.
A DIFFERENT TAKE ON PRODUCT PAGE OPTIMIZATION
Products are typically sold by talking about things like features and benefits, current price specials, glowing reviews, product photos, etc.
But these are table stakes (meeting minimum customer expectations), and not deal closers.
FORK IN THE ROAD
Irrespective of how they get on the product page, the potential buyer chooses between 2 options:
“Let me sleep on it”
If they choose “Let me sleep on it” there’s a 68% chance we’ve lost them. It’s going to kill our product page optimization chances.
As a marketer, it’s my job to make the business case, which is my product story.
WHAT IS A PRODUCT STORY?
A product story is a special type of story that’s designed to connect with visitors and make them fall in love with your creation. The job of the product story is to educate and convert new visitors.
You might be thinking, “I run an eCommerce site, why the hell will I care about stories? I sell a product.”
Turns out, there is an anthropological reason for this. Check the Additional Resources section at the bottom of this article to learn more. For now, let’s look at how to use storytelling to increase your revenues.
THE TWO ASPECTS OF A PRODUCT STORY
1: “why we exist”
2: “why this product must exist”
We’re living in a world where shoppers have more choices than ever and their attention has never been more fragmented. “why we exist” and “why our product must exist” stories break through the clutter and grab the buyer’s attention.
Think of your site as a hurdle race where the shopper has to overcome hurdles before they are ready to use their credit card.
The first hurdle is “who are you and why should I care?” and this is what the “why we exist” story answers. At this point, we’re trying to get the site visitor over the unfamiliarity barrier (graphic below).
Your “why we exist” story really matters. KoMarketing did a survey where they asked “Once you’re on the homepage, what information do you want to see available?“. 52% said About / Company Information.
Think of “why we exist” as your origin story. You launched your DTC (direct-to-consumer) brand because you had a personal frustration (we are all consumers before becoming entrepreneurs). Maybe there were already a few brands that promised to solve your frustration but didn’t deliver. You studied these products in great detail. Few seemed promising, but in the end, no one product lived up to exactly what YOU needed.
Or maybe there wasn’t any solution to the problem you were having.
IN EITHER EVENT
You went from having an idea to quitting what you were doing to focus on making your vision a reality. Your goal was to create a solution that would prevent other shoppers from experiencing your personal frustrations. Starting the journey wasn’t easy— the challenge turned out more complicated than you imagined. You even flirted with the idea of getting rid of a few key features or even giving up completely. But a voice from inside gave you the strength.
I don’t know you but I’m betting you experienced a few of the elements mentioned above. These are important details and need to be shared with your visitors. In fact, this is the story that connects your buyer with you. People buy from people they like. By reading about your personal frustrations you are helping the visitor overcome the unfamiliarity barrier and connect with your brand.
Once they’re sold on the “why we exist” story they move to hurdle 2: “I like you and understand why you exist but what makes your product the best?“
This is what the “why this product must exist” story answers.
I’d like to return to the “why we exist” story for a minute. Think of it this way, “why we exist” fills all the space that isn’t taken by the “why this product must exist” story.
POWER OF TWO
These two questions are central characters in the product page optimization saga. Nail them and experience a 20% sales bump.
Combined “Why we exist” and “why this product must exist” form your product story. What we explained above was the primer. What you need next are the step-by-step instructions. Luckily, that’s exactly what we’ll reveal next 😀
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STEP-BY-STEP INSTRUCTIONS FOR PDP OPTIMIZATION
Here is the next chapter on the product page optimization story: What Is a Product Story? And How to Write One to Maximize Conversions
We hope you liked this PDP optimization article. Ready to go down a conversion optimization rabbit hole? Check out these gems:
— If you want to zoom all the way out and start at the top of the conversion rate optimization (CRO) story you need to read this post: How to Optimize Conversion Rates and Grow Sales
— This article talks about PDP optimization. But why focus on product pages? That’s covered here: Why Focus on Product Pages?
— Our conversion copywriting process
ABOUT FRICTIONLESS COMMERCE
Product pages matter because that’s where our prospects make the crucial buy / no-buy decision.
We specialize in Shopify product pages. Watch your bestseller convert 20% better in 90 days. Our process.
If you like doing the hard work yourself, our founder Rishi shares conversion ideas on LinkedIn every day. Connect with him here.
If you want to make your life easier and still increase conversions, jump on a call.