Product Descriptions: It’s all in the details
Post 3 of ‘How to Best Sell Your Inventory to Off-Price Retailers’
Selecting the right markets and buyers and offering those buyers optimal product for their customers is key to good sales, but you can really increase your margins by proving to your buyers that your product is worth its asking price. And this is done through product information.
No matter how much detail you already provide in your product listing for buyers, you can always provide more. A generic name for the product and a few measurements just doesn’t satisfy buyers these days, where visuals are the drivers for sales and details are essential for purchase decision-making.
Okay, so what are the ideal description elements?
1. Images, Images, Images
The more visuals provided, the better sense the buyer has of what the product looks like, how it fits, and the product’s quality. Images can be anything that could be used on an e-commerce website, such as:
- Flat product images
- On-model images
- Mannequin images
- Lifestyle images
2. Written product description
While images are key, so are the descriptions where you as a seller can highlight specific features or unique touches to the product that differentiate it from others.
Descriptions can be in various forms, such as:
- Written record of how you would sell the product
- Suggestions on how, when, and where to use the product
- Bullet points on key features
3. Product measurements
Think of these numbers as if you were shopping online. The inseam, hem length, waist width for clothing, or height, depth, and width for other products, are all helpful in knowing how the product should fit and differentiate one product from another similar style.
Additionally, supplying the buyers with this information will in turn help the buyers better inform their end customers about the product.
4. Material type and content
Material and content can be different types of fabric and their corresponding material contents for clothing, or plastic, leather, or other kinds of synthetic material for other products.
The material content of the product is key to illustrating the quality of the product and thereby can be beneficial in justifying price-point.
Additionally, some materials have shipping constraints that the buyer needs to know before purchasing.
5. “Made In” country
End consumers—whom the buyers are buying product for—have preferences and biases regarding the physical location in which a product is manufactured.
This is especially true for the growing millennial population, who prefer socially responsible brands and have been seen to refuse to purchase products from companies producing goods in certain countries.
This information is also helpful to buyers regarding understanding the product.
Are these things really important? It seems like extra work for me.
It all comes down to buyer confidence in the product and the heightened product value that accompanies increased confidence, which in turn comes from an e-commerce-like ‘shopping’ experience.
Typically, buyers either have a list of items and style types to buy, or are buying for a specific demographic and market with specific taste and product desires—they know what they need. Thus, buyers who are blindly purchasing items based singularly on a minimal description will pay a lower price for those pieces, as they do not fully know what the product actually is.
However, buyers who are provided with an abundance of information, as on an e-commerce site, similar to that shown on an online store, are much more likely to pay top dollar for the pieces because they can see what they are getting and know that the product they are purchasing is aligned with their company’s buying plans.
Additionally, more product information decreases the possibility of buyer’s remorse and requests for markdown allowances or refunds, which in turn lead to suboptimal relationships and missed future sales opportunities.