05 Oct The Importance of the Product Detail Page (PDP)
In the vast and varied field of B2B eCommerce, most companies are blinded by misconceptions. They mistakenly think that:
- they can’t compete with Amazon.
- paid search is the solution.
- cut-and-paste product descriptions will be enough to sell a product.
- a mere commerce website is sufficient to gain business.
All of these swirling misconceptions have plunged eCommerce into an abyss and cause most B2B companies to over analyze their projects.
eCommerce conversion optimization is about optimizing product pages.
One of the largest mistakes that companies make is trying to jigger generic elements for more conversions.
Here’s what I mean by that. Let’s take your average eCommerce website. You have a lot of products to sell. Your goal is to help the user find the products as quickly and easily as possible. So what do you do?
You start optimizing the homepage. You fiddle with filtering options. You snazz up your sliders. You enlarge your CTAs. You add some sizzle to your headlines. You tinker with the homepage, homepage, homepage.
But here’s the shocking truth: Users don’t care about your homepage.
What do they care about?
They care about your product pages. Provided they can actually reach that page, they will see, they will be persuaded, and they will buy. Reconfiguring the color saturation of your slider image, or moving a line of text above the fold won’t dramatically improve your conversions. Instead, you need to focus on what the user is focusing on — product pages.
I certainly think that filtering options, slider images, and headlines are important, but there are levels of importance. And in those levels of importance, it’s essential to focus on the elements of highest importance: product pages.
How do you optimize product pages?
The key takeaway from this article is simple — focus on product pages.
But what do you actually do to these product pages? Here’s a tactical, conversion-focused methodology that will take your eCommerce site from lame to fame.
Know what users are searching for.
What is it that your users want? It’s your product. How are they searching for it? By using search queries.
How do you get on their radar? You optimize your product pages for those queries. Let’s say a customer wants a “solar powered indestructible metal waterproof LED survival flashlight.”
A customer who wants something that specific will need to search for it. How? By typing some combination and variety of words that identify such a product. Your goal? Get your product to rank for her query.
In order to do this, you have to know what she’s looking for and offer just that.
Optimize for those searches.
Now, we’ve come to the crucial component of optimization. You must optimize for search before you can optimize for conversion. Make sure that the flashlight shopper finds your product page.
You do this by using the right longtail keywords…
- In the title
- In the description
- In the headers
- In the copy
- In the alt tags
You don’t need to stuff the page with the keyword. Instead, you need to create a page designed for the user that provides all the information that she could ever want about that product.
Feature the best product description in the industry.
Conversion optimization is nothing more than user optimization. Create a product description that is detailed, powerful, compelling, and long.
Let’s be honest. A 30-word product description is not going to cut it. Users want more. They want to hear all about the product. They want you to sell it to them in exquisite detail and with persuasive language.
Don’t just talk about the number of LED bulbs and that batteries are required. Tell a story about the product! Explain how it’s the most powerful survival flashlight on the planet, how it will endure Mount Everest chill, Sahara heat, and piranha-infested river water.
How many words does it take? It doesn’t matter. A thousand? Five thousand? Do what you need to do, write what you need to write, to sell that flashlight.
Pictures are crucial to conversion optimization. Here are the quick tips for the best images:
- If possible, use custom images of your products.
- Go for high-resolution images.
- Make the images interactive, with 360° degree views, and rotation and zoom options.
- Picture the product in action, with people actually using it.
- Show pictures of the product’s details.
- Users need to see the products to want them.
Optimize the “buy” button.
The final stage of optimization is the call to action (CTA). Most conversion optimizers will immediately hustle to optimize the CTA, because it’s considered “low hanging fruit.” ‘
The truth is, if someone wants to buy the product, they’ll find the “buy” button, even if the copy is lame, the button is small, and the color is wrong. Aren’t these elements important? Sure, but they are less important than the page as a whole.
Content is king, even in conversion optimization. Unless your product page content is optimized, your CTAs won’t matter.
Once your content is polished up, finalized, and ready to persuade users then you can begin to adjust your buy button.
Instead of spending your time and effort optimizing an eCommerce website as a whole, focus on product pages in particular.
There are obvious challenges to this approach. You may have thousands of product pages, and optimizing descriptions and images is a monumental task. Perhaps the solution is not to try and optimize everything, but rather to limit the number of products that you sell.
Knowing your users, identifying their queries, and satisfying their interests is essential to eCommerce success. Once you realize that this happens on product pages, you’ll start to see a massive improvement in your conversion rates.