Are your product pages the worst sales presentation ever?

Yesterday I discussed our recent survey which showed that many of you offer some proper “next steps” at the end of your website’s product pages. And quite right too. As I’ve mentioned before, the product page should be the equivalent of a sales presentation.

Imagine you’ve announced an “open day” where prospects can turn up at your premises and find out about your latest product. Half a dozen of them are sitting in a room, and you send in your best salesman. What would he do?

Obviously there are too many people in the audience to find out their individual circumstances, so he would have to generalise. My guess is that he would want to talk about the benefits of the product, and show a demonstration of some sort. He would offer the technical specifications as a handout, and conclude by offering tailored support material to follow, as well as ensuring that follow-up appointments are made with each individual. A proper story, a focus on the customer, and closure.

A product page could do all that, if you think about it. But instead, here’s the sales presentation which most product pages offer:

“Hello, thanks for coming to find out about our product. Despite you having made the effort to find us, I’m sorry the company doesn’t look particularly smart, we only give this place a lick of paint every five years or so. You probably can’t see that tiny picture of the product over there, but the model number of the product is the most important thing.

“Now I’m going to stand here and read out the product’s data sheet.”

(Five minutes later) “And that’s the end of the data sheet.”

(Exits, stage left).

The audience waits a moment, but it’s clear they’ve been left to their own devices. They get up and leave the building, except for the only visitor who seemed to pay attention during the Reading Of The Data Sheet. He wanders down a long corridor until he finds a room with a tiny “Sales Office” sign on it. He enters, and asks someone if he can have a bit more information about the product. He is asked which product he means. “I’m not sure what it’s called”, he says, “it was the one we were just told about in the presentation”.

“You’ll need to go back there and find out what the model number is”, comes the reply, “Then I’ll see what I can do.”

Meanwhile, upstairs, the Managing Director wonders how the company might get some more sales enquiries.

(Do now read the next article, linked below)

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