Are you struggling to become one of the top five sellers in your niche? In the session, we’re joined by the President of PR Reach, Shane Oglow, to discuss a step-by-step method for optimizing your product listing. We also receive top tips from our host, Norm Farrar, on his ideas around catching the eye of the consumer.
“You want to hit them with the benefits first, how it’s going to change their life or make them not smell or whatever you’re doing.”
Also, 50% of shoppers are aged 18 to 30-years. Why? The one-stop-quick shop is more accessible than heading out to a store; Amazon’s next-day delivery was marketed for those eager-eyed millennials. (queryspout.com)
So, how do we optimize our listings to grasp that demographic and increase sales?
Step one: Become your audience’s best friend
The most critical first step is defining your audience, but most importantly, getting to know your audience, understanding their needs and buying behavior.
Step two: Interrupt the scrolling
Design an eye-catching image and step away from the norm, right, Norm? This technique is called ‘pattern interruption’ because it allows you to stand out from the crowded buyer’s feed.
If you don’t see any interruption in the pattern, you’re just camouflaging the listing; you need something to draw your eye.SHANE OGLOW
For example, if you were to search ‘chef knife’ on Amazon… go ahead… you’ll find that every image looks the same. Each image shows the knife held in the top right and facing down towards the bottom left of the picture. Not only that but every image is shown with a white background which is a compulsory requirement for Amazon. However, most ‘knife cases/holders’ shown in the images are black. Why not try something different? Get creative, add a splash of color to the knife case, and catch the buyer’s eye!
A mistake many sellers fall into on Amazon is using stock images to promote their product; this will only tarnish the attraction your page gets. Avoid using generic stock images because customers viewing your page will know that the image is fake. Shane recommends using a micro-influencer to model your product to create a more natural and authentic image.
Another way to create high-performing image content is to utilize your customers’ experience with your product. Ask for reviews and images of them using your product, it could go a long way with your potential customers. It will showcase your product in ‘the real world’.
Step three: Why should they buy your product?
Relay the benefits of the product! If your product has a unique feature or benefit and you want your ‘browsers’ to pick up on it, pinpoint those features in a graphic.
Step four: For the researchers…
Follow up the pointers in the graphic with an in-depth bio below your image. Norm calls this part of the process ‘the book.’ The book [bio] should tie into the two or three bullet points you highlighted in the graphic.
Depending on your product, here are some ideas of what you could add to your ‘book’. Ensure to use a bullet point format:
- Focus on selling the product’s benefits! Why does the buyer ‘need’ this product? How can the buyer benefit from this product?
- The product name and brand.
- The color of the product.
- The product’s model number.
- The size of the product.
- The material and ingredients used in the product.
- Explain how the product was made.
- The package contents.
- You may want to add whether it was recommended by a well-known, certified company. For example: ‘Dermatologist recommended’.
We encourage you to listen to the full session above! There were tons of other insights shared in this session.
Hey everybody. Welcome to econ weekly. Hey, we can get started in just two seconds. Hey Shane. Thanks for joining. Hi, Rachel. Hey, great to be here. Okay today, we’re going to be talking about something really cool. And I’m not kidding. We’ve seen this, uh, with, with Amazon sales that they can not only increase your sales and your profitability by doing a few simple things.
Double your sales or even higher. And we’re going to get into that. And all we’re doing is a few tweaks to your listings, and this can carry over to any e-commerce, um, platform if it’s Shopify or WooCommerce. Uh, so we’ll be talking about this, but this is we’re primarily selling on Amazon, but these tips are good right across.
So, Shane, um, I just wanted to introduce you, so Shannon. Is my partner, but also a, the president of a PR reach, which is a communication company for, uh, for e-commerce businesses. So welcome Shane. Thank you very much. Okay. So let me just see here. Uh, just a couple of, uh, just a couple of things. I got to go over some housekeeping.
So my name’s norm Ferrari. I have a podcast called lunch with norm. It airs every Monday when. Friday, uh, at noon Eastern standard time, uh, this is being recorded. So if you do have a question, raise your hand, we’ll bring you up on the stage. If you don’t want to be recorded, just don’t raise your hand. Now we can get right into it.
So what we found. And I don’t know if, if you ever have taken a look, if you use an, uh, an app like helium tens or their ex their x-ray app for a Chrome extension, but anyways, in Amazon or with Amazon sales, these are some tools that we use. It’s a very good tool and it kind of gives you an idea of what the market looks like.
So what you’ll notice day in and day out that there’s always somebody that is the top. That’s just crushing it followed by one or two other people. And then a lot of others usually eat dust. Now, maybe there’s three or four people that are in the middle and everybody else eats dust, but that’s what the model looks like.
And when I start. Uh, I think it was 13, 2013 or 14. Um, I saw this, I saw this and it was harder back in the day to do this, but I saw that there was, um, a pattern and started to research this pattern and it just, it was blatantly obvious that the quality listings who to funk made sales, the. The listings that didn’t look like they were written for keywords and there were more engaging made sales and the price point and believe it or not.
The lowest price. Doesn’t always get the more sales I’ve seen. And we’re going to get into this today. Three different tiers that you can. And I challenge anybody to take a look at this on Amazon to see if it’s any different, but the three tiers of perceived value. So one just one fact, I found this out recently.
I had no idea that 50% of Amazon customers. Our middle to upper class or upper income, um, uh, buyers. So that was a bit of a shock because I thought it would have been more of the Walmart, uh, demographic and, you know, which is looking for a, more of a discounted price. And it’s just not the case on Amazon, you know, have you seen this shame?
No, I don’t think I seen that, but you know, I’ve always considered myself upper class norm. So, you know, at, you know what I meant.
So anyways, um, let’s start with this. What are we talking about when we talk about optimizing a listing? And so there, there’s a few different areas that we’re looking at. So the first thing in the very first thing in the most important thing, Is the graphic that primary graphic that you, that you choose and probably the most important thing.
So let’s say that I’m, I’m typing in the word bully stick or something like that. Dog chew raw hide. And, um, I get the search listings that all come up. So you get your search, uh, your keyword search results. And I, and I can show you this right now. If you go in and you type in chef. Just for an example, Damascus chef knife.
You’re going to notice that most of the chef knives are going from on an angle going from the bottom left to the top. Right. Uh, if they have a box that is either just horizontal and everything, there’s nothing different about it. And so what we try to do is create a pattern interrupt. So that could be by filling the frame that could be by, uh, taking that knife and putting it from top, uh, doing the complete opposite, or it could even be introducing a splash of color.
Now you’re not allowed to put a splash of anything in the background. It’s gotta be white, but the packaging. If you take a look at the packages that the higher end knives come in, most of them are black. They’re all black. Well, just add a little bit of yellow and all of a sudden, boom, you’ve got your eye even further.
I don’t know if you’ve seen this Shane, but, um, with supplements, say everybody’s selling a supplement. Uh, a 16 ounce supplement with whatever 90 capsules and this the same bottle basically. And they’re all filling the frame the same size. So it’s full sometimes. Like I always like to fill the frame, so it was very less white space, but sometimes I’ll make it a little bit smaller in this case, again, for the pattern interruption.
Now, have you done anything like that? Uh, to, to get people to attend? Yeah. A hundred percent of you think about it too. Like, I think we’ll camouflage this, right? It’s you don’t see any interruption in pattern and that’s what people are doing camouflaging or listing. If they don’t, if they’re trying to be just like everyone else, you need something to draw your eyes.
So you’re right. Whether it’s, it depends on the type of product. A knife is a good example because it kind of points, you know, it’s linear. Um, but if you’ve got, if you’re, if you’re selling a ball, everybody else is selling ball. There’s not much you can do. Your ball is going to be around. So you’ve got to do something different to draw that attention, to, to make it stand out.
In that case that, you know, color is probably a good reason or a slight change to the background or a little bit different size, just something to make it a little bit different or, you know, having the packaging in the background with it, or whenever, whenever it would be appropriately. Yep. You’ve got to do something to draw that attention and make your stand out a hundred percent.
Yeah. And then you’re taking a look at what we call the slide deck. Right. And anybody on here that is selling on Amazon, uh, knows for the most part that you can put different types of images there. What do people want to know? Well, they want to know the benefit. They want to know the features. So usually what I’ll do is I’ll take that primary image, which is the container or.
Product itself and I follow it up underneath it with the benefit. So people see right off the bat, what it’s all about. Now, this, you can mix up this formula any way you want it. This is not a cut and dry formula, but then I I’ll show the product with the. And then it could either be the features or lifestyle, um, uh, image.
You can also use, uh, uh, the ingredients as something, but make sure this is, this is cut and dry. There’s so many new Amazon sellers, even. I mean, there’s even some, uh, advanced sellers that do this, but they write a book. Well, you don’t write a book in your graphics. Um, the book, the graphic that’s in your bullet points.
And so this is a tip I learned from Diane bolster. Um, the hypnotic copywriter, she told me. If you’re putting in benefits or features, make sure that they emulate the beginning of your bullets. And so, you know, let’s say that it’s an odorless bully stick. Well, you can, you can have that at the beginning of your bullet.
So it, people can see that on that one graphic, there was, you know, two or three points they look over and if they want more information, they can grab it there. You know, it’s, it’s pretty cool. Plus aesthetically, it looks that much more, you know, it just better. One other tip people love lifestyle for do not.
I’m just telling you this out of experience and Shane, I bet you, we can share a bunch of examples on this. Don’t go just to a free stock photo place. You know, there’s places like Pixabay and all that. And then all of a sudden plop a bar soap and somebody’s hand that’s in a bath is five times bigger than the actual person’s hand.
People are so sophisticated right now, they know it’s fake, you know, if you’re putting it on the bottom, right. And you’re showing your product and you know, somebody laying back in a bathtub having a, a bath, that’s one thing. But if you’re trying to skip out of having a hand model, um, don’t do it. There’s all sorts of ways to get lifestyle photos and Shane, I know that, you know, a, a bunch of different ways.
Why don’t we talk about that? How. Uh, how are you getting lifestyle photos right now? Well, I think the best way to get lifestyle photos is, uh, probably from micro-influencers, uh, it’s inexpensive. Sometimes it’s free, you know, they’ll do it in exchange for a product. Sometimes, sometimes pay a little bit.
Sometimes they might get it, you know? Um, uh, well it gets, you know, different rewards programs. We won’t get into that, but I, I think that’s the best place to go and, you know, I think one mistake people make when they’re dealing with, well, there’s a lot of different aspects to micro-influencers. It’s just blanketing out there and it’s like, oh, I want to give away 50 products to 50 micro-influencers and just, you know, come what may and let’s see what comes back.
No, I think you really need to look at those micro influencers and the work they’ve done and the pitchers that post. And if they’re really passionate about it, if it’s a micro influencer who will take a picture of anything, um, you know, you you’ll tend to get really garbage photos back, which are just, you know, they pulled the rifle and they took it and send it off to you and their job is done.
Um, you, you’re better off to stay in your niche. You know, if someone’s into health and beauty or sports or whatever they’re doing, you know, they typically have a passion for it and they’re really interested or maybe they’ve got family or a kids, and they like to do these things with their family. You know, it’s a real big difference and it’s not going to be a difference usually in cost.
Uh, it’s just a little bit of your time making sure working with the right person, uh, that isn’t just, you know, doing anything for everyone, just for free stuff or to make five bucks or whatever. Um, that that’s a fantastic way, right? Yeah. I agree with you. And another way, just to get images that are very inexpensive or free, when you have a product and you have a package, put an insert in, this is nothing new, you know, that w w you would drive people over to the door.
Um, just one sec, Shane. I’m going to silence your mind, just feeding back to me. Okay. So one of the things that you can do is you can put an insert in and it’s very simple. All you do is have, uh, something like, uh, And tag us with our product. That’s a freeway. And see what happens if people are going to do that.
People like to show using your product. Um, if it like going back to that chef’s knife, you know, Shay, uh, show us using your, your, uh, the chef knife or make your favorite recipe. But anyways, get them to tag some people just say, Hey, uh, tag us for free $10 gift certificate. Well, you can, you can do that too.
You pay a little bit for that. It could be a $5 gift certificate. Many people like to do this, and plus you can make it really simple for people. You can just add a QR. Onto your, uh, onto your insert and you put the link there and that could get a lot of people over to your website. Now, another area that I want to talk about, Before we go any further into Amazon is making sure that everything, everything is consistent.
So your listing is consistent, but you’re a micro brand micro brands. And I don’t care if you’re selling a hundred thousand dollars a month. You’re a microbial. Most people don’t know who you are. So what do you do? What do you guys do when you go to a website and or Tam Hassan and you see, let’s say you’re buying some cosmetics.
Okay. You want to check out to make sure that it’s real, what you go to Google and you check out the person’s social media, or you check out the, any articles that are about them or their website. It’s gotta be consistent. They don’t have to be expensive, but they have to be consistent with the colors of the brand.
Just make everything look like the listing. So I think that’s really important. I don’t know if you have anything to add to that, uh, Shane? Nope. I think that’s super, super important. And you can use. The experienced sellers, even if it’s a new listing, you know, maybe there’s not many reviews, uh, from the inexperienced, just because of that, that slick branding.
Again, it doesn’t have to be expensive. It’s just consistent. It’s not to be super fancy, but it is very consistent. It is one of the things I’ll mention too when it comes to images. I mean, I, you know, I, I think that. Know, I love leading with benefits first because you got to think consumers and shoppers, they don’t care about you.
They just care about themselves. They just care about themselves. You want to hit them with the benefits first, how it’s going to change their life or make them not smell or whatever, whatever you’re doing. The other thing with the images is that I like to have every major point that I need to have. My bullet points explained easily and simply not too much in those images because.
Uh, I don’t know what the statistics are these days, but, uh, I mean, first of all, how many people can read very well, who are online? It’s, it’s shockingly low. Um, and they, and they read it a very low level, but a lot of people, even if you know, the, it doesn’t matter where they can read it. They don’t even bother.
They just look at the images. So you want to tell the entire story, all the major points that you want in your title and your bullet points, that story should be told in your images. So they don’t need to look at the bullet points if they don’t want it to, if they’re more insidious, they can look at the and product description or eight plus page or whatever.
That’s fine. But those, those images need to have a nice blend, features, benefits, lifestyle, really nice blend. Just to give them the whole experience. They can just go. Yeah, I’m going to buy it just based on.
Very good. Now, when you’re doing this, like let’s talk, take a look at that Amazon listing again. So we’ve talked about getting those lifestyle photos, the slide deck. I’m going to go something I was doing just before I got on the call today and it’s discussing a video now. I just got some quotes back from videographers and.
People think it’s gotta be a Hollywood, you know, a movie and depending on some of the quotes I got today, but it doesn’t have to be, you can do this yourself, or you can go and get a videographer to do it a very short clip. You can put product on a round table. I, depending on your. I would always look at trying to do, um, uh, probably a professional videographer, but if you are on a low budget, that seventh spot on Amazon, on your Amazon listing allows you to show your product.
And I just saw something, uh, like I was just looking at some bottles that I was going to buy and they were on a round table and they were just showing me the lids and everything. It was about a 32nd video. It was probably 15 seconds too long. And. That’s what I was like when I, when I’m looking at my videos, like, I’m just doing one for some bangle bracelets.
So I have somebody that’s going to be, um, an, um, um, a hand model. I have it spinning around on the box. It’s going to be anywhere from a 10 to 15 second video, and it gives somebody an idea of what it’s all about. Plus there’s going to be a logo at the end, uh, and this is going to be. All of the platforms that we sell on simple in and out, you know, it doesn’t have to be a Hollywood.
It cost $199. Now there are other ones that we have, we usually go to, uh, uh, what’s the, it’s a video. In San Diego and they do product videos for around six or $700. And they, if you need more, like if you need that minute long and it’s a higher production value, definitely that’s something you want to use.
Now, there are areas on Amazon chew that you’ve got. Now you move over to your title, your bullets. You want to make sure that you’ve got your frequently asked or frequently bought together altogether. You’ve got your, um, a plus in place. And going back to that consistency, making sure that your storefront is consistent with your website.
So if you’ve got a, if you have an Amazon store, There’s so much you can do with it. And so easy. It’s just kind of a drag and drop and you can make it, you can drive traffic over to the web store and it looks awesome. So I just wanted to touch on keeping that consistent as well. Before I go back to the title.
Now, there are all sorts of different people talking about how you can optimize your title ranging from just one phrase, with a benefit to maxing out 250 characters. If your niche allows you to do that, and you can play around with this, I’m kind of writing the. I take a Fraser to, I use my main phrase upfront.
Usually it’s a, it’s a longer tail keyword because I want to rank. And if let’s say I want to use bully sticks for an example, it’d be very hard to rank for on a launch. So what I would do is I would have natural grass fed, bully sticks or something along those lines. That or even the word puzzle. So that means the same thing as a bully stick.
So I would do my research if I can find a niche or keyword or a longer tail keyword that would help me do the ranking, plus the benefit plus a keyword. And I find that that works fine. But again, there are people I just on my podcast, Stephen Pope was on this week and he was talking to. Filling it with 250 characters.
So that’s up to you to try and play around with, I, I know that this method works for me. And then for the bullet points, Shane. Oh my gosh. What are the, what are the do’s? And don’ts with bullet holes. Gosh, I don’t even remember them all anymore, but you know, I, I think what you need to do, uh, and this does change.
You don’t change so much over the years as we’ve been doing this is you need to look at what the top people are doing in your category and, um, you know, emulate them as much as you can in style. Now, some things will work for some categories that won’t work as well for others. That’s fine, but you test it, but you know, you don’t want it.
Um, exclamation points. You don’t want to be putting in those prohibited words, you know, like free you or warranty or, uh, you know, uh, th th there’s a whole list that actually, norm I think we used to have like a list we used to give people. Hundreds of a hundred percent free satisfaction and all the anti antibacterial claim words.
There’s a ton of them. Yeah. Yeah.
Yeah. So, uh, anyways there, do your research go on Google. There should be a bunch of restricted, um, keywords there. If you don’t. Have them, or if you can’t find them DM me and I will send you that list, it’s actually quite shocking what you should or should not be using within your listing. And that’s on your eight plus pages or in your bullets, uh, lower case.
So that’s something that Amazon is frowning on right now. So a lot of people working. I was taught to use a upper case for your first portion of your, uh, for your bullets. And usually that would be a benefit. And I still do that. I do benefits, but I make it all lower case. The first part of the sentence, and then maybe there’s a comma, or I start with just getting people’s attention.
It’s enough for them to engage with the bullet. And usually it’s about, um, the, the products themselves, how they benefit. And then at the end, I just talk about more about the company. Culture just gives people that, you know, feel good about you and your brand. Then the other thing I want to talk about and I can get into a plus, but I think this is very important.
I mean, this is gold. If you take a look at Amazon lists, You’re going to see that there’s three tiers of pricing and I’m going to give you exactly, um, uh, a case study or I did my research on this for a presentation I did recently, and it was about dead sea mud. Okay. We’re talking about dead sea mud, and you’re going to the dead sea to get the mud.
It’s one place, nothing different while on Amazon. You can go in and check dead sea mud. Okay. And the lower tier ranges from 6 95, I think it was up to 1,495. That was the low tier. Those are the people who want to move volume. Ugly really ugly, um, packaging and they deserve to be at $14. Then you look like there’s prices in between, but the other group kind of goes in between that $20, $29.
24, something up to around the $49. So just under 50 bucks and this is where you’re getting some better packaging. You’ll see the perception of the products becoming that much higher. And these are all for the most part, either eight ounce or 16 ounce jars. And then you go to the top. And the top level, dead sea mud, it ranges from $79 to $95.
And the $95 package is 3.5 ounces. So that, that, that product, and it’s a brand, uh, and I gotta be fair. It is a well-known dead sea brand, but the whole group that’s in that top tier. They all deserve to be in that top tier because they spent the money on high quality, um, images. The images are a storyboard.
They’ve got a good video. It doesn’t have to be an excellent video. Their listing is all about. Beautifully. And they’ve got a nice eight plus page, which is just in case you don’t know what an A-plus page used to be called enhanced brand content. It just allows you to have some photographs and some extra text in there.
They’ve got a few, um, uh, reviews on it. If you’re just launching, it’s very hard to get reviews, but you can get. Uh, something like the bind program. Um, but anyways, take a look and you’ll do that with the next one and do that with the next I’m telling you, you’ll see this with every product and then you have to figure out what you want to come out with.
And now where this doesn’t work is that let’s say that you have a really great quality looking listing and your products. Well, that’s not going to work, or if you’ve got some really terrible photos and that slide deck, uh, the copy’s really bad, but your product’s incredible. And it’s got a high perceived value.
Well, it’s the same thing. Everything’s got to match up quality listing quality product. Equals quality price. And the last thing I have to say, and then we can take some questions if there’s anybody wanting to, uh, come up and that is authority equals trust equals sales. And if you don’t have those three.
You’re you’re, you’re not going to get that final sale. Right. So authority, that’s what I was talking about with your brand, making sure your listing is good. Your social matches your, um, your website matches, even if it’s just a one-page website and maybe some content out there. Like when you write a blog article, make sure it’s a good blog article, not something that you paid a, you know, a penny, a word, um, you just get what you pay for with that.
And then you don’t have to put out a ton. But just make it where it’s quality authority equals trust equals sales. Now, I don’t know if you have anything to add to that, uh, Shane. Well, I think you covered it pretty well. And I think the one thing to keep in mind is, okay, you need all these components. You need them all pulling in the same direction.
Great. If you’re new, I mean, when I started, nobody knew anything about anything. We’re just trying to figure things out as you went, but now. Um, you don’t have to be the best copywriter in the world. You can hire someone to take care of that for you. You don’t. I took engine images on my kitchen floor. You know, there wasn’t a lot of people doing a lot of these things.
Now, you know, you don’t want to break the bank and spend money on every little thing you do what you can, if there’s things that you just can’t get, right. Or you’re not confident on, you can hire someone that’s a pro. Um, and eventually you’ll start to pull those things together and, you know, You know, back in the day, too, when you think of things like titles, we just keyword, stuffed everything.
And that worked, you know, and then, uh, the emphasis went onto the backend, how you were able to manipulate the backend or some loopholes that went away. All those loopholes we knew would go away. And the only way to really succeed now is to have everything tight and branded because, uh, you know, people are more and more sophisticated, uh, bigger and bigger players are coming in.
So if you’re a small guy, you can still do. But you just have to make sure it’s tight. It’s just attention to detail. There’s so much training out there to, you know, there’s so, so many clubhouses there’s just so much available. There’s no reason why anyone can’t do it. Whether you do it all yourself or you outsource part of it, it’s, it’s all there for the.
Yeah, I agree with that. And there are some really great, uh, courses. And like I said earlier, if you’re not, or if you’re looking to start selling on Amazon, um, I can highly recommend checking out, uh, helium 10, um, check out their tools, check out their suite. They also have a course built into it. Pay for a subscription.
The subscription is not a lot of information. Plus it acts as a really great, um, resource, uh, for, you know, doing your, your, your competitive analysis, product research. It’s an all in one suite. So I get nothing from helium 10. I just, uh, I use it myself and I think it’s a great product. So I think, I think that’s it for today.
Shannon, unless you have anything for. No. I’m great. Hey, thanks for having me out. It was, it was nice to chat. Yeah. I never get to chat with you. Yeah, I know. You’re too busy for me now, but okay. All right. So, uh, oh my gosh, I lost my train of thought. We have this room booked every Thursday at two o’clock. We did a special one o’clock today.
Um, and we have new guests. What we’re trying to do in this room is to make online sellers better online sellers. Also, if you want to learn. I have a podcast called lunch with norm every Monday, Wednesday, and Friday. And we go into Amazon and other types of economics comic topics. I want to thank startup club for allowing me to have a room.
And then that’s it for today. Thank you for joining us.