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Modern shoppers are savvy, often researching product details and comparing prices long before they stand in a check-out line or add a product to their virtual cart.

If done well, buying guides and product slideshows offer your customer an interesting and engaging resource to browse through dozens of products quickly and compare product specifications. With the goal focused on converting browsing customers, buying guides are worth the investment.

The benefits of a well-written guide extend beyond the browsing consumer. This hard- working content type is SEO rich, provides unique content by design, and helps to connect products listed deep within your site to the homepage and top-level category pages.

Buying guides aren’t meant to be updated often, making this type of content your “evergreen” content, remaining published on your site year-round. With the ability to feature many different types of content, buying guides can include: demo videos, comparison graphs, charts, checklists, descriptive text or image slideshows with product highlights. Being able to offer this much product specific content takes some careful planning to make sure all components work together in an authoritative, unbiased expert voice.

Buying guides aren’t meant to be updated often, making this type of content your “evergreen” content, remaining published on your site year-round. With the ability to feature many different types of content, buying guides can include: demo videos, comparison graphs, charts, checklists, descriptive text or image slideshows with product highlights. Being able to offer this much product specific content takes some careful planning to make sure all components work together in an authoritative, unbiased expert voice.

Here are a few quick examples of the diverse content components that work well for buying guides:

Brand Comparison

This tent brand and use comparison is included in a comprehensive tent buying guide published by a leading sporting good ecommerce retailer.

Packed with great information, it allows the reader to quickly parse the product details by scanning which use you are looking for in a tent.

Ratings & Review

A leading online electronic retailer published a rating and review within their smart-phone buying guide.

With thumbnail images, colorful chart graphs and product ratings, the consumer can choose which product to look at more closely.

Style Comparison

With a simple slideshow that includes product highlights (fabric, fit, design) the consumer can browse the top 12 t-shirts from a single product guide page.

 

Once you decide to post a buyer’s guide, you’ll need to:

  1. Identify the theme. Buying guides could take the shape of gift guides, category features or a comparison within a specific product category.
  2. Collect the content: Buying guides need more content than a simple product page usually offers. Product information should include details like dimensions, materials, use, expected duration, and why each of these are important.
  3. Craft your voice and design: Make it easy to browse and easy to share. Buying guides should be full of useful information but easy to parse with scanning eyes. Keep your tone authoritative and let your product knowledge shine through the design of the guide.

Creating compelling content is an important component for the overall health of your business, but critical for your online marketing success. Unique, engaging content pages are the heavy-lifters of your website; They serve to engage your customers, establish your authority, differentiate your business and provide front-page visibility to your best product line-up both on and off your site.

Many marketing, content and product teams within ecommerce companies are swamped this time of year, deep in preparation for the holiday shopping season. The investment in creating buying and product guides often lead to successful returns and are well worth the investment. If you find your team short on time to research and create the content needed for buying guides, bring in support! Learn more about the articles and buying guides we can create for you here.

 


Padmini Murthy

About Padmini Murthy

Padmini is a marketer, a mom and a musician (the 3Ms). She loves to read about new and emerging technology. She has successfully led marketing initiatives for mobile, cloud, semiconductor and now, eCommerce. In her last position as a marketing head for a mobile company, she helped the company triple their revenue in less than 3 years. She has several marketing publications and her case study on InfoSys and the challenge of global branding was published by the Harvard Business Review.

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