6 Top Content Ideas for Ecommerce Websites

When it comes to increasing online sales, you’ve likely heard and read a lot of recommendations about website user experience and how more content can help your website. But what kinds of content will help improve your visitors’ engagement and increase your bottom line? Here are some content ideas for ecommerce websites we’ve seen work for our clients.

1. Video

The number one content idea for your ecommerce websites to increase sales is to demonstrate your products with video. According to data from Think with Google, “more than half of consumers say online video has helped them decide which specific brand or product to buy.” Video can be leveraged for 360-degree views of products or to show how the product works and how to use it. Time lapse videos can show the results from your product over time. No matter what you sell, video is essential for your ecommerce website strategy.

2. Reviews

Just like word of mouth recommendations, product reviews add legitimacy and encouragement to prospective buyers, dispelling concerns and validating they are making a good purchasing decision. Given that there are innumerable review software and platform options, here are some of the top features you should look for:

  • Email reminders to buyers to leave a review after they have received the product
  • Verified buyer designations
  • Options to incentive reviews
  •  Integrations for Google Merchant Center, to show reviews in Google search, and to connect to your other systems (shopping cart, CRM, social media pages, etc.)
  • The ability for reviewers to include not just text, but also images or video

Use these tips to encourage customers to submit more user generated content.

3. Detailed Product Information

Often, content on ecommerce sites is too scant when it comes to basic details like dimensions, materials and ingredients. One of the best content ideas to increase conversions on your ecommerce website is to ensure you feature pertinent product information on your product pages. In addition, for products that have a range of extensions, parts and accessories, be sure to prominently feature those add-on options in close proximity to the product details in order to increase the chance of a cross-sell.

5. Charts and Tools

One very strategic ecommerce content idea is to guide website visitors on how to choose the best product for them with comparisons and tools. Outlines of product features in visual graphics and interactive configuration tools can streamline your sales process by outlining all the options and considerations buyers need to make to select the product that’s right for them, leading them right into a final decision and purchase.

6. Customer Support

As much as customers love the convenience of shopping online, they still have questions and want some of the same kinds of service available in a traditional retail space. That’s why FAQs, Live Chat, Virtual Try-On (or use of Augmented Reality features) and other support offerings are critical ideas for ecommerce website content. Think about your product catalog and what kind of support your visitors are most likely to need to create a friction-free online buying experience. Next time you hear about the importance of content for ecommerce website success, you’ll be prepared with the knowledge of the content types that will compel action and improve your conversion rate.

How to Leverage User Generated Content

Ecommerce sites that host user generated content (UGC) such as product reviews and photos taken by customers are relatively common. Unfortunately, the inherent value of that content is often overlooked by e-tailers. With the ubiquity of product discounts and shipping promos, UGC can be a great competitive differentiator. According to a consumer survey from TurnTo, 81% of US consumers say they would pay more for, and wait longer to receive, products that had UGC. Rather than “setting and forgetting” the UGC features of your ecommerce site, use the following tips to leverage this valuable content to your benefit.
    

Establish a baseline

Step back a take a broad view of how UGC is currently incorporated into your ecommerce site. What types of UGC do you support? Of those, which do customers interact with the most? Answering these questions will help you make informed decisions on adding new types of UGC, which types you want to promote to customers, and how effective UGC is for certain products.

Expand UGC touchpoints

UGC is only effective when customers are interacting with it, so look for opportunities to make UGC more prominent on your site and in your marketing materials. Some ideas include:

  • HTML coding that allow ratings and review snippets from your site to appear in search results
  • Including ratings and review information in the shopping cart and throughout the checkout process
  • Using review commentary and customer photos in social media and retargeting ads

Strengthen foundations

A robust foundation of UGC provides both you and your customers with more accurate information. For example, the 4-star average rating on a product page with 500 reviews is more credible than a 5-star average on product page with only 2 reviews. Use techniques to get more UGC submissions for your ecommerce site.

How to get more User Generated Content in Ecommerce

User generated content (UGC) such as product reviews, questions & answers, photos, videos, and more provide a number of benefits to ecommerce sites. They improve your site's online shopping experience, build trust with new customers, improve brand reception, and serve as a resource for creating promotional and marketing materials. But, just because you build space for UGC into your site doesn't mean shoppers will come and start providing content. Use these tips to encourage your customers to submit more UGC, more frequently.
    

Incentivize

There are several ways you can reward customers for contributing UGC. Let contributors know that their content is appreciated and makes a difference by notifying them when other shoppers find their photos, reviews or answers helpful. If your site has a customer portal, you can borrow some ideas from gamification and award users with badges or redeemable points for actively contributing UGC.
    

Provide tools to make creation and submission easy

Users are more likely to provide UGC if you can make the experience as frictionless as possible. Some ideas include using review submission forms with writing prompts or icons for mobile that launch a camera app for quickly sending product photos or video.

Highlight privacy and security features

Give contributors a way to preview how UGC submissions will appear onsite (including how account info will display to other users) before they go live. If you are hosting a platform for shoppers to communicate with one another (e.g. a user forum or Q&A product page section), make sure it is moderated well to prevent offensive content.

Ask for UGC

Redesign the visibility of UGC throughout your site and use clear calls to action for shoppers to participate. Offsite, send follow up emails to customers after they receive an order and ask if they can write a review or answer other customers' questions. You may need to adjust the timing of this follow up to ensure customers have had enough time to properly evaluate the product.

How to Keep Your Product Reviews Authentic

Today’s consumers are savvy enough to research products online before buying them – according to a survey from PowerReviews, about 95% of consumers consult customer reviews while making a purchase decision. By supporting product reviews on your website, you can attract these types of consumers. As an added benefit, well-rated or reviewed products are prime subjects for promotional and marketing materials. More...