This post is part of a series reviewing new sites launched on Amazon Webstore
Insight Editions new site offers lavishly produced and visually stimulating elegant and informative books on photography, music, and popular culture. Built on Amazon Webstore – their eCommerce site showcases a high level of site customization and features.
Company Name: Insight Editions
Type of Products: Books on photography, music and popular culture.
There are a few things we like about the new site at InsightEditions.com:
Highlighted Product at the top of each category page. At the top of each category page they have highlighted a specific product. This can be a great way to promote a specific product offering, best-selling product or trending item. This highlighted product allows site visitors to easily view a specific product before navigating through their entire product offering.
Huge Search box. Looking for something specific? Insight has made it dead-simple by placing a giant search box at the top of their page navigation. Big, bold and clear results in a simple user experience for site visitors.
Prominent “join our newsletter” button. Capturing site visitor’s emails is a difficult task – but it’s key to establishing a quality email list. They have done a great job by placing a “join our newsletter” button at the top of their left navigation bar. No matter what page you’re on, you always see it.
It’s one thing to have a newsletter signup on your site, but if visitors never see it then what value does it provide? Insight Editions has done great job making sure their newsletter signup is prominent on each and every page on their eCommerce site.
“Add to Cart” directly from category browse pages. They have done a great job building in the feature of adding products to your cart directly from the category browse pages. No longer do you have to “click” into a specific product to add it to your cart – you can do it directly from the category browse page. This is a nice feature that makes eCommerce shopping quick and easy.
Today it’s becoming more and more important to use video to educate customers about products on your eCommerce site. Many customers have questions that can’t always be answered through words. Customers love to see, hear, and touch products before they commit to purchasing them. However, most often the Internet doesn’t allow for this. By using video, you can demonstrate how your product works, showcase key features, and give the viewer an in-depth, 360-degree view of your product.
Effectively educating your customers through video can be tricky. Common mistakes include not answering your customer’s questions, not highlighting key product differences, and creating lengthy, run-on videos. Here are four tips to effectively educate your customers through video.
1. Think like your customers
What would you want to know? What would you want to see? Thinking like your customers not only helps you answer their questions, but it can also build assurance and credibility. Common questions include:
- How does this product work?
- What does it do?
- What are the key features?
- What are the details?
- What makes it different?
- Will it last?
2. Highlight differences
What makes your product or service different from competitors? All customers want to know, so show them. By showing what makes your product or service different, you immediately stand out to your customer.
3. Showcase the Details
Video is an excellent way for customers to get up close and personal with your brand and products. Using close-up shots, and high-quality video can bring out the details in your products. Notice the level of detail you can see in this photo of a waterproof ski jacket:
4. Keep it short and sweet
Attention spans are short; your videos should probably be too. Once your videos exceed the one-minute mark, the drop-off rate can increase quickly. Focus on keeping your videos crisp, concise and interesting. Research shows that, on average, 30-second videos get viewed 85% of the way through, while two-minute videos only average getting watched halfway through.
Shorter videos are usually much more engaging than longer videos. Shoot for your videos to be between 20-60 seconds in length. If you need to show more, consider breaking down your videos into sections. You could even use a carousel feature to display your videos – allowing people to view what they want.
When used properly, video can be an extremely powerful tool to boost eCommerce sales. It not only allows customers to get a firsthand look at your products in action, but it also gives brands a chance to be unique and creative – standing out from competitors. Keeping these four tips in mind will lead you on your way to effectively educating your customers through video.
Have you found any of these tips especially helpful? Have a suggestion to add to the list? Let us know in the comments below.
On Wednesday 10/17 at 12:00PM Pacific, join Internet Retailer’s Don Davis, Editor in Chief, Scott Pulsipher, Director of Amazon Webstore, and Danna Ramberg, Director of IT at Seattle Pacific Industries, for an informative webinar on specialty eCommerce sites.
In this webinar, Danna will share why and how Seattle Pacific Industries implemented their multi-brand strategy with dedicated eCommerce sites for their UNIONBAY, Union Jeans, and Howe Clothing brands. She is joined by Scott Pulsipher, to discuss how Amazon allows businesses to launch full-featured eCommerce sites quickly and cost-effectively.
Don’t miss this opportunity to learn about specialty sites and how they can benefit your business.
The webinar is on Wednesday October 17, 2012 from 12:00PM – 1:00PM PDT
Did you miss the webinar?
The Amazon Webstore dev team is going on the road, and hosting a mixer in Des Moines, Iowa next Saturday—August 4, 2012! The event will be held at Rock Bottom Restaurant & Brewery, from 5:30 – 7:30 PM.
There will be appetizers and drinks, much discussion of technology, and hobnobbing with the team that has built the scalable eCommerce platform for Amazon Webstore! There will also be a drawing to win a free Kindle Free.
For details and to RSVP, see the event here: http://linkd.in/LMJH4C
It’s old news that driving traffic is at the top of the priority list for eCommerce professionals. It doesn’t matter if you’re driving hundreds of thousands of visitors or laser-targeting only the most relevant traffic—if nobody’s visiting your site you’re not selling anything, at least not in that channel.
Similarly, strategies for driving traffic come as varied as the people executing them. There’s no one-size-fits-all. In deciding where to put your time and money it can help to look at the different types of traffic drivers and how they fit with your business strategy. I’m talking about short-term vs. long-term traffic drivers.
Driving Short-Term eCommerce Traffic
It’s easy to think that “short-term” traffic would be inferior to “long-term” traffic, but the term isn’t pejorative at all. Short-term traffic drivers have potential to drive large amounts of traffic, but are so called because they’re generally backed by an ad spend and the traffic can be expected to drop off when the spending stops. The advantages and disadvantages are clear: you can get lots of traffic quickly, but it goes as quickly as it comes.
These are some common short-term traffic drivers for eCommerce sites:
- Comparison shopping engines. Having your products listed (and listed well) in comparison shopping aggregators like Amazon Product Ads, Google Product Search, Bing Shopping, and TheFind can drive high-quality traffic.
- Affiliate networks. If you’re having trouble bringing in traffic, consider having other people do it for you. Using affiliate networks like Link Share, Share a Sale, and Commission Junction, you can have third parties promoting your products on their sites—and you pay a commission for sales that they generate. These networks are available to any seller and Amazon Webstore makes integration easy.
- Online Advertising. You knew it was coming, right? There may not be a faster way to drive traffic now than to advertise online. You’ve got all sorts of options at your fingertips:
- Display advertising – There’s no denying that the big ad networks can bring you visitors. You can spend a lifetime optimizing your campaigns, but people do it because it works.
- Search Engine Marketing (a.k.a SEM) – SEM is a special brand of advertising and requires you to dive deep into keywords and keyword phrases. With paid search, you get well-qualified traffic because you capture people’s attention as they’re actively searching online.
- Social media advertising – Ads on Facebook are a volume operation. They may not be the most impressive ad units, but the clicks are cheap enough to make it worth it. Twitter, YouTube, and LinkedIn have been improving their offerings as well.
Driving Long-Term eCommerce Traffic
Long-term traffic, on the other hand, is the traffic that comes on its own. It can be a slow grind to get these going, but they have the advantage of being free (generally) and driving more organic traffic.
Some popular long-term traffic drivers:
- Search Engine Optimization (a.k.a. SEO). This discussion really begins and ends with SEO. It can take a long time, be a painstaking effort, and require continual adaptation to changing algorithms, but it’s also some of the most reliable traffic you can get. Putting in the time almost always pays off.
- Email. Email can be a short-term driver if you’re blasting out to a lot of people, but careful curating and maintenance of an email list can make sure that your best customers are receiving relevant offers and coming back on a regular basis.
- Social media. Yep, this is where social media belongs. As businesses continue to flock to Facebook and Twitter, it has become extremely unlikely that customers will find you by chance (unless you’re doing something really compelling). Instead, social media is a way to build a base of fans and continually reach out to them over time… as long as you keep posting, you can keep them coming back.
Ultimately? Short-term traffic can be expensive, but it can also happen now. Long-term traffic is delayed gratification that requires building a based but then benefitting from it later. Many sites will need both, but the choice should be based on your business’s strategy, budget and customer. Do you do flash sales, or big events? You’ll need short-term traffic to support that. Do you opt for brand-building and consistent pricing? While short-term will help, long-term traffic is what will build your business.
Which type of traffic is a better fit for your business? Are you doing one or the other, or both?