Imagine one day, when checking your email, you see the following messages:
“UP TO 90% SALE! LAST DAY OFFER! WHILE STOCKS LAST!
“Dear Amy, you are the chosen one! Want to receive a big present from us?”
My guess is, you can’t help paying attention to them and you are most likely going to open these emails.
We now live in an increasingly competitive and modern advertising world which is home to all kinds of media- from radio to TV, print to online messages, etc. It forces businesses to make a special effort to get attention. As a result, many businesses turn to e-commerce sites, resulting in an overwhelming amount of competition. Hence, it is necessary to grab customers’ attention to products on your site in the most impressive way.
Yet, marketing principals largely remain the same. People seem to keep following the AIDA model and purchase loop in marketing which identifies the buying process that clients go through.
What exactly is AIDA?
AIDA stands for Attention, Interest, Desire and Action. It aims at the consumer’s cognitive, affective and behavioral stages, which affects how consumers think, feel and act respectively. It’s the oldest trick in the sales book, but rarely thought about when it comes to e-commerce. This model stems from the four steps that a salesperson follow when pitching a product to the potential buyer. In the world of e-commerce, there is no sales person. Hence, this process is (should be) done by your online store.
So, how do you go about doing it?
In most cases, visitors will land on your product or category pages using search engines. This article will concentrate on your product pages within the AIDA process. Once the visitor lands on your product page, you only have a few seconds to catch and retain his attention. In these few seconds, this visitor will decide whether this is what he was looking for or he’ll move along. In the real world, you’d be trying all ways to grab the attention of the buyer, but in the virtual world, you already have his attention. All you need to do is ensure you don’t lose it.
You will likely lose the attention you’ve been given if your product page is too crowded and doesn’t give the impression of what it really is about from the first look. Too many distracting elements can cause your visitor to think he didn’t find what he was looking for, even though he was on the right product page. *TIP: You can spot this behavior and attempt to rectify it if you are using Google Analytics. Try finding people that landed on the right product page that perfectly fits the keyword they entered into the search engine, but right after they landed, they used your internal site search to try to find the product they were looking at. This shows how poorly your product page has been designed. If there are none of these issues in your Analytics, your product pages might be built pretty well from the attention retention point of view.
Interest is not an issue online because visitors searching for your product on their search engines already showed the interest. In the real world, you would try to make the buyer show some interest in your product. Fortunately for you, all you need to do now is to show them why they should act. You need to make them desire the product.
The visitor landed on the product page and you managed to keep his attention. Awesome! Now what you need to do is to make him desire the product. You can approach this from different methods, but what really works is a good product representation. A product description should be readable and scan-able, and should include multiple high quality images from different angles. If possible, you should also upload a short clip showcasing the product. If the product can be shown “in action”, that would also induce desire.
Also, try and look at the product page and information provided from the visitor’s point of view. You should ask yourself if you could envision this product’s size and feel it even though you’ve never seen/felt it in real life. If you can’t, work on the description, images, and video.
Action-the last phase of the model and also the most crucial part. The visitor landed, you have his full attention and you made him desire the product. Now it’s time to make him take the one last step, to click the button. It is of utmost importance to have a clear call to action. Your “Add to cart” or “Buy now” button has to be the most easily found and straightforward item on your product page. It has to be big-but don’t overdo it, in a different color than the surrounding elements and on a logical spot-preferably at the top/bottom right-hand corner of your page. You can ask a person that never saw your website and show him the product page. Tell him to add the item to the cart. If he can do it without reading anything or looking around the site for more than a few seconds, that’s a good button design and placement. If not, you should improve it.
Some elements can distract the visitor from completing the last step of the AIDA process. Those can be different banners, or some other buttons that compete with your “Add to cart” or “Buy now” button’s attention. As a business owner, you might want several call to actions from your visitor. You are probably going to place many items other than the product itself on you online store, but always ask yourself, is it more important that visitors check some other items on discount on your store, follow you on Twitter / Facebook, subscribe to your newsletter or buy the item he is looking at right now. All of these other calls to actions can be present on other pages – such as category page, sales pages or even the checkout success page – but the product page should be as free of these distractions as possible.
Hopefully the information above helped and you have become good friends with AIDA by the end of this post! 😁