How to Sell a Commodity Online (Better Than the Next Guy)
Imagine a sixty-something woman wearing jeans and a sweater. A single gold band – her only piece of jewelry – adorns her ring finger. Her hair is thick and short and silver. She’s walking hand-in-hand with a brown-haired little boy who won't stop jumping.
This was my grandmother, my babushka, in 1992. The boy was me. And little did I know she was about to show me a miracle.
Our daily walk had taken us farther than usual from home. We were about a mile or two away from the glass of water I was desperately craving. I was four years old at the time; uncomfortable and impatient as all get out. So I flexed a little:
“I WANT WATER!” I yelled. “I NEED WATER!”
My grandmother, however, was patient. She was tactful and kind and nurturing and accommodating. Most importantly, she had magic powers.
“You want some water?” She asked calmly.
“Well it’s a good thing I brought a thermos full of tea. Do you want tea, instead?" She knew I loved tea.
“Then make me a cup with your hand, I need somewhere to pour it.”
I immediately tucked my thumb down and curled my remaining fingers into my palm. My grandmother did the same with her own hand.
“Hold still,” she said, as she poured the tea into my tiny clenched fist. I motioned for her to stop just before the invisible liquid spilled over the top of my hand. I put my fingers to my lips and drank. My elbow rose steadily with each gulp.
It was damn good.
After that, I'd stopped yelling and jumping. I was still thirsty. My throat was still dry. But I was satisfied. Miraculously, I was content. You could say my grandmother sold me. Not on a product, but rather on a feeling.
Basically, my grandmother's show was neat and engaging -- it took my mind off the thirst. It put me in a good mood. I liked what I saw and it made me think:
"This ain't so bad, I think I'll go with it!"
Coincidently, if your business provides a commoditized service, this is also what you want your website visitors to think. Interestingly, much of what my grandmother did to make me comfortable will also work on your prospects.
Creating trust and undeniable credibility
My grandmother was completely calm, collected and cool. I was about to run into traffic to prove how thirsty I was, but she held it together. Her gentle, even voice evoked good feelings. It was the voice she used when she read books to me. It reminded me that I trust this woman. Hell, that I love this woman. Of course I'd follow her lead. Design your website correctly and your customers will follow you, as well.
Is your moving company part of the American Moving & Storage Association? Then display the AMSA emblem in your footer.
Is your remodeling company part of the National Association of the Remodeling Industry? Then NARI's logo should be somewhere on your homepage.
A link to your social media pages as well as your Yelp reviews can't hurt either. Ultimately, you want to make sure your audience is exposed to the extent of your positive web presence (i.e., don't send your prospects to an abandoned Twitter page or an overwhelmingly negative Yelp profile).
Furthermore, great content on both your web pages and your blog is essential to creating credibility and trust. If the information you provide your prospects is consistently useful, intelligent and entertaining, it's only a matter of time before you start seeing conversions.
Want to know how to make your blog sticky? Sprinkle some anchor text throughout your content.
Making it super easy, like 1 + 1 = 2
My grandmother's call-to-action was incredibly simple: "make a cup with your hand.”
That’s it? No problem. Done. Now gimme what you promised.
Evoke this type of reaction from your prospects and you'll be floating in a sea of quote requests, because if something's easy and painless and there's a need for it, people will try it.
For example, just about every page of your website should have a quote request form in the top-right corner (because that's where our eyes go first). You never want to make people wonder what to do next (e.g., how to request an estimate or which button to press to speak with sales). The vast majority of people will grow impatient and leave your site.
A strong, visible, attention-grabbing call-to-action (e.g., a quote request form, a telephone number or anything else that tells your potential customers what they must do to make a purchase) is good for conversions. Incorporate these throughout your website and start allocating time for order processing.
Exuding confidence and oozing value
I forgot to mention that my grandmother provided free refills.
As Spectrum, we know we're not the only SEO marketing company on the block, but we are one of the few that offers a money-back guarantee. If you're truly confident in your ability, a money-back promise is one of the best ways to articulate that fact.
Businesses that want to bring additional value to their customers and prospects may also choose to equip their websites with live chat.
Whatever strategies and techniques you choose to implement, just remember:
Your website should make your customers feel good about your business.
Your website should differentiate your company from the other guys in your industry.
Your website should make the buying process simple, streamlined and stress-free for prospective customers.
Whatever you do, dear reader, make sure it culminates in a positive feeling. Create a feeling that emanates confidence, comfort and value. Create a feeling that makes people lean back and say:
"This ain't so bad, I think I'll go with it!"
At Spectrum, we provide our customers with the tools and software necessary to stand out, make a great impression and get the sale.
Learn more about our comprehensive, turn-key services HERE.