Date Published: 16 Jun’13 | Author: Lynda White
The World Wide Web is the favorite source of information for many people across the globe. People access information by visiting websites related to the desired product/service. This has given rise to a healthy growth of online businesses. Competition is at its peak. If you own a business, make sure you provide beneficial information to visitors who visit your website.
For many business owners, putting up useful information for visitors is a hectic task and thus many resist the idea of providing information. They believe just in providing some information about their products/services. They are least bothered about providing useful information to educate the visitors.
We are not saying that you should not include the information on your products/services. We are emphasizing the fact that along with product descriptions, you need to provide some useful information. It is worth taking that pain. There are many advantages to it.
Builds trust and credibility of your brand
Free content that is easily accessible by the users is the starting point to make users engaged with your website. Have a blog, write articles, e-books and upload some ‘how-to’ videos that help your visitors solve their problems or learn something new. This creates an initial trust in website and could translate into trust on your brand.
Generates brand awareness
Once your blog has a decent amount of content that is both basic and informative, start creating some thought leadership articles (relevant to your industry). These articles are a value addition to the customers. Generic information can be found in any other competitor’s website, but authoritative content born from your own idea differentiates your brand from the rest. Once customers find it valuable, they may share it with people and thus promote your brand on your behalf.
Helps prospects in buying process
Buying process or buying cycle represents the different stages of online buying procedure. Different businesses have different stages of buying process with respect to their business model, but in general buying process can be classified into three phases – the awareness phase, the evaluation phase and the decision phase. Let us see how useful and informational content helps prospects in these steps of buying process.
- Creates awareness – Awareness is the first stage of buying process, where prospects have little or no idea about their need. They just have something that is not working and they need to fix it. In this phase, they need some awareness – about the problem as well as about the solution.
By creating some informational content, you can serve their need. Your content should provide the information required to solve their issue. You can use white papers, e-books, how-to videos, checklists, etc., to educate prospects. If you can make some logical arguments along with some studies and statistics, you can easily convince your prospects that the solution you have mentioned is right.
- Helps to evaluate – Evaluation is the second phase of buying cycle where prospects know what is wrong and could also have the idea about how to fix the problem. But they are still not sure which solution will work out best. They come to the Internet to research and find different options they have to fix their problem.
You can help them get a right solution. You can create articles and blogs to let them know different options they have, which helps them to evaluate and find the right product. You will also get a chance to introduce your product/service at this stage.
- Helps in decision making – Decision making is the final as well as the crucial stage of the buying cycle. The prospects in this stage are clear about what they want and they just want to compare their top choices. You can use good articles, videos, newsletters and provide some case studies and product literature that could help them to come to conclusion easily. With these kinds of write-ups, you can also urge the prospect to hire you.
Despite the tremendous increase in the number of websites providing all kinds of information, people are still hungry for informative content. When there is such demand, which is likely to increase your traffic and of course sales, it is sensible to provide useful and informational content. It may take some time and effort but the results are always positive.
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