Hey guys. Today we're going to be talking about sales copy and the whole copywriting process.
Why are we talking about copywriting when we're e-commerce sellers? Well, the main reason is a lot of e-commerce sellers completely ignore copywriting and that can leave a ton of money on the table. I want to go through the basics of copywriting. What copywriting is and how to get started writing persuasive sales copy in your product listings so that you're able to sell a lot more products in general.
What is sales copy?
Essentially what sales copy is is sales in print. What that means is, you are trying to persuade customers to buy your product using the printed word. It can be email, direct mail, SMS text messages, or even your Amazon or Ebay listings. Ultimately, you are trying to convince your customer why they should buy your product. This is very different than selling in person because when you're in person, you have body language, you have intonation in your voice, you have the excitement that you have for your product, whereas in sales copywriting, you have to do all of that using the written word which can be very difficult to do. You have to be able to convey emotions. You have to be able to hit certain emotion triggers in your customer in order to have them feel the need to buy your product. Let's go through some of that right now.
Understanding Your Customer
With sales copywriting, you want to be in the customer's shoes. Say you're selling a back scratcher. Why would a customer search for a back scratcher in the first place? Are they actually looking for a back scratcher? While that might seem like a very weird question, you'll understand as you get better and better with sales question that it's not that weird at all. The reason why a potential customer might be looking for a back scratcher is not because of the back scratcher itself but because of what it can do. He has an itch on his back that he needs to have relieved. He might have tried forks at home. He might have tried rubbing his back against the wall or the corner of one of the rooms in his house. He might have even asked his friends or his spouse to scratch his back, and he's just tired of not being able to relieve his itch whenever he wants. That being said, he goes out and searches for a back scratcher.
Now, you can see that although something as simple as a back scratcher doesn't seem like it's that big of a deal, when you're understanding your customer and sales copywriting in general, it can open up a whole new world of understanding why your customer is doing what they are doing.
The first thing in any sales copy is understanding your customer's needs, desires, pains, pleasures. If you don't understand those, you're not going to be able to write any sales copy that's going to be effective. Next, once you understand your customer's needs, desires, pains, and pleasures you then have to be able to get their attention. We typically call this the hook, and normally it is the title of your Amazon, Ebay, or Shopify listings, or the title of whatever it is you're selling. If somebody is looking for a back scratcher and you have your title as something else, say, “back itch reliever”, they might look at that and see that the title does not match what they are actually searching for. You want to be able to be congruent with what your customer is actually searching for in order to get them to be hooked enough to go and visit your listing. Likewise, if a customer is searching for a back scratcher and they see 50 listings that have the word “back scratcher” in it, how is yours going to be differentiated?
They don't want your product, they want a solution to their problem
Now remember, most people don't want necessarily just any old back scratcher, they want the best back scratcher. Somebody whose title says “The Best Back Scratcher” or “The Ultimate Back Scratcher” or something that has some sort of superlative associated with it is likely to get more clicks into their listing simply because they are differentiating themselves from the 50 other people who are selling back scratchers. You really want your hook to be something that's going to attract a visitor to your listing.
Now, what do you do once they're on your listing? Well, the thing that you have to realize is, when they're on your listing, they're already interested in what you have. Now it's your job to keep them interested enough to read through your description of the product. As a customer looks at your listing or the description of your product, they're going to start making judgments as to whether or not this particular product itself is going to relieve their pain or solve their pleasure.
Show the benefits
When you are writing up your descriptions, you want to make sure that you are not only giving them the features of your product, but also the benefits. The benefits can be negative benefits or they can be positive benefits. Negative benefits are where you continue to poke at the problem that the person has. For example, somebody who's finding your listing because they're searching for a back scratcher might see on your description something such as, “Are you tired of having to ask your spouse everyday to scratch your back? orr… “Are you tired of having to use your wall as a scratching post just like a cat?” Anything that you can do that shows the negative and continues to poke at the problem really can provide emotional triggers that cause the person to want to buy even more from you.
On the other end, you have the positive aspects of the benefits, such as being able to scratch your back whenever you want, having the independence of knowing that anytime your back is itching, you can scratch it at any time. “Our soft back scratcher will not scratch your skin.” Things that are positive that show the benefits of your product.
Call to action is key
Last but not least, you want to have a call to action in your sales copy. Somewhere in the description, you want to tell the customer to actually buy your product. Although it might seem counterintuitive or maybe it doesn't really make sense since they're there to buy the product in the first place, a lot of people need that extra nudge in order to add your product to their cart. You want to make it clear in your description that they should add the product to their cart right away. You'll see a significant increase in sales simply by letting your customer know that they should buy now.
This was a quick introduction into sales copy. In the future, I'll go more in depth into other aspects of sales copywriting, but for now I want to leave you just with these small, basic steps that you can take right now to go and improve the copy in your listings. Remember that the number one thing that makes good sales copy as opposed to bad is that you understand your customer. Get in your customer's shoes. Learn what their pains, pleasures, needs, and desires are. The more you're able to do that, the better your sales copy is going to be.