Online purchases of major appliances have skyrocketed over the last two years, after we saw global sales of large appliances up 31% in the first half 2021 alone. As consumer behavior shifts once again back towards in-store purchasing, some trends are here to stay. Consumers are increasingly beginning and ending their purchasing journey online, and because of this change, it is now more important than ever to maintain efficient online product data management systems.

Even if the final conversion is made in-store, most purchase decisions will involve some degree of online comparison. Accurate product data will be key to improved conversions and competitiveness within the major appliances sector. Businesses stand to gain value in the form of better purchasing experience and conversion, lower customer returns of goods purchased, stronger customer loyalty, and improved performance among search engine results.

In this article, we’ll explore a few best practices when it comes to optimizing your product data to boost conversion – let’s get started…

1.   Grab Attention with The Product Title

The title is the first encounter the customer has with your company or product. This is the moment when you want to pique their interest by positioning your business as the one which has the products they want – with the features they are looking for.  Those few words in the product title is your chance to direct their interest towards your product when it pops up among many other alternatives. It’s essential, therefore, to use the title not just to stand out but to communicate what’s important to the customer.

Additionally, when operating on an online platform, taking into consideration the elements which help consumers land on your page first is critical as well. This process starts with optimizing your title for the search options consumers may enter. Make sure to include the product’s brand name, product type, and size, for example.  Include the most relevant information, ordering them according to the importance consumers place on them. You can do this by researching the features of major appliances consumers searched for more often and include them first.

Different online marketplaces and channels have different requirements. Make sure to research the required elements for each so that products are smoothly accepted onto those platforms.

Now, once you have a title that captures the consumer’s interest, providing them with what they’re expecting when they click on your product page is essential.

2.   Use the product description to reach your customer

Consumer studies have shown the importance of product descriptions in consumer purchasing decisions and conversion. Positive associations and experiences created with product descriptions positively affect buying decisions.  The feelings created when they land on the product page and start looking through the information you have provided sets their mood while deciding on your product. Therefore, knowing what consumers are looking for helps with the development of the right descriptions.  Make sure to include all the information your consumer will find most relevant.  Once again, consider the requirements from different marketplaces such as Amazon, which requires specific keywords, and create descriptions that fit those criteria.

Differentiating yourself is key here as well. Highlight what makes your product different. This can take the form of a brand story, for example, or specific features and qualities unique to your product range.

3.   High-quality, clear images create trust.

Images play an important role not just in attracting attention but in the buyer’s decision as well. Especially for major appliances, consumers use images to analyze and decide whether to purchase.  Few or none would buy without images.

Images that makeup part of the product description should include some key elements. Firstly, so they have the greatest impact, and secondly, to increase the chance they pop up in a consumer search. These key elements include having images that are of a high resolution, are bright, include different angles of the product, show optional colors clearly, and the images should be uniform across different products.

In the major appliance market, the product description is probably more significant than the image. While the image should be good, the descriptions will contain the information people will be focusing on for comparison purposes.

4.   Keep product data consistent across all channels

With product data optimization your goal is to ensure that data quality is of the highest level and the structure of the data is correct. For example, checking that the format of values matches.

You also want to avoid consumer confusion across platforms. Do this by making sure the information across all is the same and that any updated information is present on all platforms as well.

The most efficient way to do this is to automate the process. An automated product data management system promotes accuracy across all your platforms, by eliminating the chance of human error and speeds up the process in multiple ways.  The results on a product page are only as good as the quality of the underlying data. So, making sure that quality is of the highest standard should be a priority.

As a business, you want to ensure the data is complete, so consumers have all the information they need upfront. To do this, set parameters for all channels when setting up. Consistent data also allows you to illustrate how products meet industry and legal standards across product ranges.  This promotes consumer trust in your business plus provides consumers with a better and more informed shopping experience.

5. Maintain the most up-to-date data

Making sure the data is constantly up to date is critical not just to sales but to brand loyalty as well. You want to give consumers the most accurate information possible to help with their decision. Some of this information directly affects the consumer buying experience, such as estimated delivery time/delays. Other factors to consider are price, availability, tax, and shipping costs

Up-to-date information comes smoothly when there is a relationship and easy access to the information from brands and manufacturers. A business can ensure the latest information is available and leverage this advantage with dual syndication. (as offered by ECP)

6. Maximize the benefit from your product description page

Another area to focus on with your product description page is checking the different product description requirements and formats among the various channels.  Being such a vital interface for product sales, it is important to determine what can be included in each channel and make sure you utilize it to the maximum by including everything the channel allows.

A long-term strategy you can easily implement is to develop data tags specific for each marketplace to make uploading your products there smoother.

Additionally, use unique values for each product such as product ID and product title. This will help keep it traceable in the future and will help you identify the same products across platforms.

7. Systemize your digital assets so they are easily accessible by your entire team

Consumers interact with your company in different ways, not just online. It may be through chat boxes, phone calls, or emails, for example. Your sales and customer support teams are the face of your business and an important part of the customer experience with your company. Giving your sales and support team the ability to easily answer customer queries, gives your entire business a greater advantage. Internal efficiency gains coupled with better customer loyalty.

By having the data easily accessible, accurate, and up-to-date data, the team can find the products and the product information the consumer is inquiring about quickly.

Customer support team performance can significantly impact conversions, not just by efficiently assisting customers, but also by demonstrating that the company is well organized and professional.

8. Automate the input of your data sources so you constantly have the most accurate data

It takes time and effort to ensure consistent data. Small details such as naming convention discrepancies can wreak havoc for efficient comparison of your products. Manual and repetitive tasks such as checking that all required fields have been included by the supplier and that the product information is complete are tedious and error prone. The onboarding of new products (and the regular updating of existing products) can be transformed by systemic automation. It’s possible to revolutionize your product data management process with the right PIM and DAM system.

Paving the way for product data optimization

The future of competitive business in the major appliance industry is strongly linked to efficiency in the online marketplace.  Boosting conversions is certainly an achievable goal when you know how best to represent your products digitally.

Knowing how marketplace platforms work, the best ways to use them for your business advantage, and which details to focus on can take your product listings to another level.  Consumers are looking for detailed information, which is accurate, up-to-date, and consistent across platforms.  By making sure your data looks professional and complete, you enhance your customer journey and loyalty to your products.

Automating some of these processes means you can provide your customers with all the above much more efficiently. Plus, your team will be better able to service those valuable customers.

One way to do this is by implementing a PIM/DAM solution that takes care of all the product information for you, across all your channels – no matter how many of these open in the future, and no matter how complex or specific product information or assets need to become.

To discuss how ECP can help you tap into these trends quickly and efficiently