Now that you have the right group of people designated to create the B2B e-catalog and your goals have been defined, it is now time to discuss the overall design and content areas. If you missed our first post on creating B2B e-catalogs you can view it here.
Like most things, designing a B2B e-commerce product catalog is not as easy as it may sound. Effective e-catalogs are more than just visually attractive images and a few words describing the product. Your digital product catalog, when well structured and organized, is a great way to connect with prospective customers and can provide the information they need to make a purchasing decision.
Follow along with us as we discuss key design aspects that you will need to create a successful e-catalog that your clients will actually use.
Today’s B2B purchase journey is controlled by the buyer, as 68% of B2B buyers determine their purchasing needs through online research before ever interacting with a sales representative.
That said, they want something that is simple and easy to use in their already busy work day. B2B e-catalogs should not only make it easy for buyers to find the products they need – they should also make it easy for the buyer to find products they didn’t even know they wanted, thus increasing potential sales.
Create a digital catalog that is visually appealing to the buyer, one that doesn't leave them feeling overwhelmed. Avoid disjointed layouts and clashing colors. Instead, determine which background color will compliment your products the most, utilize your corporate brand colors wherever appropriate, and design sleek, modern layouts. Impress buyers straight away with placing your best-selling products in an easy to view area of the e-catalog.
Likewise, product grouping, which is when items are grouped in categories and subcategories, makes products easier to locate and purchase. Without product grouping, buyers are forced to wade through products individually, thus the seller loses out on additional sales. Also be sure to consider a minimum or maximum number of images present for each product within the e-catalog.
SKU’s and minimal manufacturer specs alone aren’t enough to secure sales. Keyword-rich product descriptions that give buyers all of the important details without be too wordy will help solidify the sale. A successful product description provides customers with details around features, such as dimensions, materials and more, as well as problems it solves and other benefits to help generate a sale. Keyword-rich descriptions will be found easier online through search engine optimization, a key benefit to helping possibly bring in new clients.
Also be sure to include pricing and any current sales or promotions so that buyers aren't left in the dark.
Strong descriptions are critical, but don’t forget the value of visually appealing product images. Images show the product at a glance, and there’s a definite difference in image quality between a picture shot with an old smart phone versus one taken with a professional camera. Make sure you utilize high resolution images that are in focus. The same holds true for videos, ensure that quality remains high to pull in your viewer.
Proper lighting is essential in photography, so if you choose not to hire a professional photographer, use natural light or consider purchasing a professional lighting kit. Also be sure to take images of your products from a variety of angles so that your buyer has a comprehensive understanding of specific details.
While the above tips are vital in creating a successful e-catalog, all of that is useless if catalogs are not being updated on a frequent basis. Unfortunately, it’s common for B2B merchants to have outdated catalogs on their websites. The process of updating can be complicated, but it’s absolutely necessary, as it prevents out-of-stock and discontinued orders from ever being placed. Do your business a favor and set reminders to frequently update your e-catalog to ensure a better customer experience for your buyers.
WebRevelation is a full-service website design and application company with over a decade of experience. We have helped many businesses create a custom online presence with features such as e-catalogs, automated ordering, Search Engine Optimization (SEO), and more. Contact us today at 817-283-3324 or complete a form online for a complimentary consultation. We look forward to hearing from you.