Have you noticed how quiet it is on your website recently? The visitors come and browse the pages, but the sales are barely trickling in. You can sense the withdrawal from the final phase of the purchase and you wonder why your prospects fail to convert. Your ads are in place and they show healthy traffic to your website. What is, then, turning prospects around and making them leave? Could it be your sales copy?
As we have said before, sales copywriting is tricky. It is one of the most difficult types of writing because it must convince people to part with their hard-earned money. In order to do so, the copy must be persuasive, to build trust, to make people lust after a product and to reassure them that they are making the right choice.
Looking over many product descriptions, sales newsletters and other forms of copy, you can clearly see why those texts do not hit the mark. They contain some of the most off-putting mistakes which make prospects lose interest and confidence in the company and its products.
Could it be possible that you are making some of these mistakes? Let’s go through them and analyse them:
- Confusing Features with Benefits
So many product descriptions are laden with features, down to the most detailed ones. That’s a good thing, right? People know exactly what they are buying! Actually, people do not really care about these details. What they really want is to know what they get out of the purchase.
When writing product descriptions, always focus on the question: what’s in it for me? When a family buys a new car, they are not going to base their decision on the number of cylinders, the ignition type, the alloy of the car body, and so on. They want a safe and reliable car for themselves and their children. They want to get good mileage and affordable maintenance costs. This is what they really care to learn from the product description, not technical details they may not fully understand.
- Telling People What They Need
“You need this blender to chop vegetables in the most efficient manner for your home cooking.” What is wrong with this sentence? Any person will feel at least slightly offended that you are telling them what they need. You are treating your prospects like children who need to be told this and that.
People know what they need: they need a reliable home appliance which helps them cook food faster, enjoy a healthy meal and have more spare time for their hobbies. Your copy must not become a moralising piece of “this is how you should live your life”. Instead, tell people how much better their life will be once they start using your product.
- Forgetting to Tell Stories
Do you know what sells best? A great story. People of all ages love stories. We have all been raised on various stories and this is the foundation of how we learn, how we discover the world around us and how we relate to other people. Great brands tell amazing stories.
For example, Nike tells the story that anyone can be a great sportsperson, find their own outdoor hobby and pursue it at their own pace, without competing with anyone else but themselves. They’ve consolidated this story over the years and keep refreshing it with every ad and product description. You should also ask yourself: how can I put my sales proposition into a story?
- Not Using a Conversational Tone
Selling is all about addressing each of your prospects on a personal level. You do not address a group. You do not speak in general terms. You must imagine that there is a person in front of you and you are trying to convince him or her to buy your product.
- Not Editing and Formatting
Large chunks of texts without paragraphs, subtitles and bullet point lists are a big turn-off. People will not even take the time to read the first sentence. The online environment has specific formatting requirements we talked about in a previous article.
Also, failure to spot and correct a typo or a spelling mistake could cost you a sale. People reason like this: if they are not careful about proofreading their copy, how careful are they in making their products? You cannot argue against this. So, take a break, look out of the window, drink a coffee and then come back to your copy and proofread it to the last dot on the i.