:: Product Analysis
Here we take an in-depth look at your product. It should be noted that not all things sell easily on the internet. Indeed some items sell better than others. We can't simply sell our offline products online as many companies have found out at great expense. This means we need to learn what actually does sell on the internet and what doesn't.
What sells on the internet?
Unique items that are difficult to obtain by conventional means. The word difficult has varying degrees depending on the factors such as speed, geographical considerations and even customer service issues.
Well known brands. If we want to order a years subscription to our favourite magazine, there is no problem with ordering it over the Internet, we know exactly what we are ordering.
Information backed goods. If there is an abundance of information on the product, perhaps a "frequently Asked Questions" page and so on, shoppers feel more comfortable that the website belongs to a reputable and accountable company.
Convenience. One of the flagship examples of this are the personal insurers like Columbus. They provide instant cover 24 hours a day. Great for Those who realise they are not covered for travelling abroad the night before they begin their travels.
What does not sell so well?
Items requiring handling. Bearing in mind we can't actually see, touch or interact with a product before we click the "Buy" link, we should understand that items requiring a level of interactivity do not sell well.
Inconvenience. If the product is harder to purchase online in one way or another, people will just buy it from an offline retailer. You may be surprised how frequently this happens. Many websites are geared up to take Visa and MasterCard transactions, many forget about American Express. Worse than this, many websites are not able to accept a normal cheque. How many websites have you seen with no mailing address on the contact page, or the address only available from the home page. 4 or 5 clicks into the site, the buyer is unlikely to remember how many times he must hit "back" to find out where to send his money. He is more likely to click on the next website in his list.
Lack of information: Many products need to be reinforced with good background information. People will buy frozen peas online if they are told something like:
"Jolly Dwarf peas are grown in a pesticide free environment and hand selected by us. We freeze them and send them onto you in less than 4 hours, ensuring you get the freshest, handpicked selection from our sunny fields, 7 days a week."
Even this can be expanded but the general idea is to, make sure buyers have the best information available. Did you know that 4% of all internet sales are from a "novelty" perspective? This includes people who would like to brag they know all about the food they are eating (as in this example).
Goods returns: Products that are not backed up with a good after sales and returns policy for faulty or unsatisfactory items frequently lose the sale to their competitors. Ideally, this should be simple and not render the client with any out of pocket expenses.
Product Analysis Summary
If your product is identified by the easy to sell options, then you are doing fine. An additional look at the peripheral services that accompany it, should enhance your business even more. If your product is difficult to sell online, then move onto the aspects about your product that are easier to sell, like service and guarantee plans, add-ons etc. or consider your website to be an information portal and location finder for your product.
To enhance any service, it is well worth bearing in mind that many people use the internet as a means of obtaining goods at better prices or for better deals. If you can add something of value to the product, free for internet sales, all the better.
The more readily available a product is, the harder it will be to sell online, to be successful you must identify what makes your company different from the competition. A visitor will decide to buy from you only if he feels you will provide the best service, or fastest delivery, have better after-sales service or sees your company as the most professional.
If a customer is not sure about something, he is more likely to shop elsewhere. You must provide the information clearly and it must be easy to find.