How rich content is helping to build brands across the connected world

How rich content is helping to build brands across the connected world
Chris Bosworth has been with Webcollage for 11 years. Prior to this, he spent over 10 years in the advertising agency business, both print and digital. Chris is currently Vice President, Professional Services at Webcollage. Chris spends his days talking to our clients and developing in depth knowledge about their business. This helps him to work with internal teams to provide the best possible service to our clients.

Over the years, we have seen manufacturers using all available technologies to aggregate and publish various types of enhanced information about their products. While rich content may not be new to most brands, product manufacturers and retailers in the eCommerce world, it continues to help boost conversions and to connect at a deeper level with their consumers.

Rich product content – which can include photos, videos, interactive tours, 360 views, comparison charts, Q&As and product selectors, has been proven to effectively power online sales conversions, while improving the customer experience. In fact, studies demonstrate that delivering rich product content increases sales conversions between 12-36%.

The brands we work with utilise rich product information to build their brands and increase awareness of their products on some of the world’s leading retail ecommerce sites. Many of those sites actively encourage their brand and product manufacturing partners to include this detailed information, knowing that it enriches the consumer experience and increases the usefulness or utility of their site; while increasing sales, reducing return rates and improving conversions.

According to new research, the usefulness of e-Commerce sites and apps — known as utility — is now the chief factor driving digital satisfaction for consumers. In the case of U.S. shoppers, 43% see utility as the main driver of satisfaction, above factors such as social engagement (22%) and privacy (20%). Given the modern consumers’ emphasis on practicality, retailers are responding by allocating resources to improving their site’s utility, streamlining their eCommerce and mobile experiences; aligning UX with consumer intent and providing users with the information they need.

One of the greatest benefits of the internet is the transparency that it provides – whether that is related to pricing or information. The rise of online shopping has levelled the field for smaller manufacturers who are now able to market to a vast number of potential buyers on retailer sites that carry their SKUs.

Small and medium sized (SMB) brands and product manufacturers now have access to tools that can streamline the process of transferring rich product information from their own sites to multiple retailers simultaneously. Through the leading rich product dashboards, brands and manufactures can deliver all sorts of content, including user generated product reviews and videos, inline as HTML, which has been shown to have a positive impact on their SEO rankings. Ensuring item pages are populated with key elements like descriptive text and images, interactive product tours and dynamic feature/benefit comparison charts, all helping to drive shopper engagement and faster purchase decisions at the product page.

Leading retail technology solutions are also helping manufacturers to connect with consumers through the mobile space. With more shoppers using smartphones in-store to browse, research prices or to place orders, brands have realized that they need to provide their customers with a mobile-friendly solution and come up with ways of connecting their brick and mortar stores with their online channels.

Today, some of the most engaging content in a marketer’s arsenal is User-Generated Content (UGC). From video to images, there’s nothing like seeing a real person interacting with and enjoying a product. Impressively, 92% of shoppers’ trust recommendations made by friends and family, and 70% of people trust online reviews and recommendations.

Even with UGC, brands need to find a more powerful way to deliver this information. They must find ways to become a part of the conversation.  Strategy and the right technology are critical to successfully integrating UGC into the customer journey, so it doesn’t simply add “noise” and overwhelm the consumer. The ultimate consumer experience anticipates, responds to, and works with the modern, connected consumer’s requirements. The modern marketer must understand there is power and value in various types of content, depending on the product, and that each consumer will be looking for different information about each product they are considering buying. 

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