Interactive Content: 5 Ways to Tweak Your Ecommerce Strategy and Boost Sales
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Content is king, but interaction sparks action – and you need your audience to take action. So how about we combine the two? Sure, you can write yet another blog post (yes, we are aware of the irony, but stay with us here), or craft another creative social media post, but rather than just pushing content, you’ll want to connect with your audience.
There are many reasons why you should implement interactive content in your eCommerce strategy. And there are many ways to do it. So, shall we dive right into it?
Why interactive content works
Delivering experience wins from simply delivering information. You’ll probably remember interactions with store employees – bad or good – better than that time you read a product description or label in a store.
Interactive content triggers emotions, and it makes people feel heard: rather than pushing advertisements on them, it gives you a chance to ask them: what do you need or want? It’s a proven effective tool in eCommerce and sales, for many reasons. We highlight the 4 most considerable ones.
1. It helps you stand out from the crowd
Ordinary content makes people see your brand as exactly that: ordinary. You’ll be just another brand, blending in with all the others.
Doing what others are doing might be easy, but is that what an expert would do? This is exactly what your audience will ask themselves when they see very safe, standard content coming from your channels.
Another static piece of content won’t make your audience remember you, no matter how many caps lock and click baits you use. To stand out, dare to be different. And that is what interactive content always is. It’s unique for everyone because it’s about them, not you.
2. It makes collecting data easy
Here’s the thing: we, as customers, want to be helped in the best way possible. For that to be possible, marketers and sellers would need a lot of information about us, to tailor their services to our specific needs, or find the product that fits us best. But we’d rather not share our information. Yes, we’re all a bunch of hypocrites.
The bar for sharing something about yourself through interactive content is way lower than when you would fill in an official form or even have a face to face conversation.. good interactive content makes sharing that info even fun, and you won’t even feel like you are giving someone your data.
It’s all about mutual trust. Consumers want to be sure that by sharing their data, we will get something valuable in return. A solution that satisfies both parties is interactive content. When done right, marketers cannot only collect more data but more relevant data for that matter.
When done even better, you reward your audience for that with better offers or shopping experiences. Based on that trust, you can build amazing and valuable relationships with your customers. And they lived happily ever after!
3. It leads to higher engagement and more shares
If you are still reading up to this point, we’ve done something right: we captured your attention. A challenge, given the fact that the average person loses concentration after 8 seconds.
Conventional content has significant limitations in regards to catching one’s attention. Interactive content, however, sparks the interest of people. Because they can find out something about themselves, instead of your company. Suddenly they’re curious, and they’ll start engaging with your content.
Quizzes, for example, have a 2x higher conversion rate than passive content. They are 40 times more likely to be shared by users. Think about it: it’s impossible to be on Facebook and not see a distant relative sharing some kind of BuzzFeed quiz telling them what character of Friends they are.
4. You can offer personalized shopping experiences
The thing with interaction is that it takes two to tango. It is no longer about you pushing content about your business onto your customers, but them replying to you, giving you data, sharing their darkest secrets and expressing their deepest wishes. Or at least what kind of product they are looking for and why.
From these interactions, you can subtract the information you need to give personalized recommendations or shopping experiences in return. Why would you do that? Because 80% of shoppers are more likely to buy from a company that offers personalized experiences. That’s why.
Signature Scents by Hand helped their customers find their signature scent
You respond to their input with the most appropriate product for them – just like a store employee would. The big advantage is that interactive content can do this automatically and works for the masses, while still giving the feeling of a personal touch. Pro tip: the more human your interactive content feels, the better. Make sure that you incorporate logic jumps so you don’t ask for irrelevant information and prevent frustration.
And it’s not a one time trick: personalized shopping experiences have proven their worth for customer retention as well. Research shows that 44% of customers are likely to come back for more after a personalized shopping experience.
5 ways to implement interactive content into your eCommerce strategy
Convinced of the added value of interactive content and can’t wait to get started? We’ll give you a little bit nudge in the right direction with these 5 ideas for using interactive content to boost sales.
This quiz from Beardbrand helps customers find appropriate beard products based on their lifestyle
One of the easiest and most effective ways to fire up sales through smart content is quizzes. Brands have used them in many ways to recommend the right products to their customers. You can easily create appealing quizzes online, and share them on various channels.
From answering questions about your skin to finding the moisturizer that makes you glow. From clicking images of celebrities in outfits to discovering fashion items that match your style. From testing your knowledge on fire safety to learning about what precautions and products you need to keep your home safe. Should we keep going?
When you’ve made a quiz, you can get creative with where you will use them. Here are some ideas:
Use them in emails
None of us is eagerly waiting for yet another newsletter, showing us the latest products or promotions. Use a quiz to spice things up and provide better-tailored content.
Embed them in retargeting ads
If a prospect has visited your webshop but hasn’t made a purchase yet, quizzes can be a nice way of finding out what they are looking for and reminding them of your offers.
Place them on social media
Improve the shareability of your interactive content by making quizzes that are suitable for social media. Draw your audience in with attractive images and titles, and watch your quiz spread like wildfire.
But boosting sales goes beyond directly offering certain products to your audience. You’ve got to be in it for the long run. So if your objective is to improve your product, assortment or service, you need to know more about your target group, and how to tailor whatever you offer to their wishes.
Tully Luxury Travel Survey wants to find out what you like on a river cruise. This works well for either recommendation or improving what you offer.
Similar to quizzes, but with a slightly different approach regarding the outcome, you can use assessments as interactive content. Think personality tests, but make them fun. You ask the users a few questions that will help you gain information to shape your persona and give them information about their personality or business in return.
Contests are a great way to interact with your audience. We are all so full of hope that this, maybe this, would be the first time we win something. It doesn’t matter that we really don’t need whatever the prize is.
Whatever challenge you throw at your audience, here are some smart ways to get the most out of your contest to boost sales:
- The more the merrier: make the quiz shareable. Even better, improve winning chances for those who share the contest with friends and boost their chances.
- Add some sort of discount for all participants. That way, we’re all winners.
- Ask your participants for their email addresses to create a database, and give them the option to sign up for a newsletter, in which you, of course, will announce the winner.
Contests are not childish and when done right, can have great value in building a relationship with your audience. There are plenty of ideas for contests your business can hold to interact with your audience. Get creative with it – the more fun your contest is, the more people will participate.
Video is already more popular and often more effective than written or static content. So why not make it even more awesome by sprinkling some interaction on it?
It can literally be as easy as using the poll and Q/A-functions in Instagram stories. In fact, that is how many brands get input from their customers. Would you like this dress in green or purple? It makes you think a bit more about the product than when you are just simply looking at the dress, and those split seconds might trigger you to click and shop.
For longer content, you can implement hotspots in your video. These are tags on which the viewer can click to be redirected to a landing page, another section of the video or anywhere else that drives them further in the buying process.
Instead of letting your viewers sit back and relax while consuming content, try to find ways to really engage them in the video, to make it (and with that your brand) even more memorable. Want to get started with creating next-level video content for your brand? We thought you’d never ask. Let’s talk to see what we can do for you!
Polls and Surveys
You can make even static pieces of content more interactive by adding polls or surveys to them. They are one of the easiest tools to use for collecting feedback and user data. Something as quick as a one-question poll can have huge value if you know which questions to ask, that is.
Polls and surveys are again great assets in boosting sales in the long run. They’re not aimed at selling directly, but rather getting to know your target group better to improve what you offer.
For a customer satisfaction or brand awareness survey, lure your audience in by offering something in exchange for their time. These kinds of deals will also benefit your sales.
An interactive calculator by MTNOnline, was shared 65,000 times.
Everyone wants to know how much money they could save. Anyone who says they don’t care, should not be trusted. Something’s definitely up.
Using a calculator in the consideration stage of the buyer’s purchase journey is a smart tool. It’s straightforward: you put in data, you get data back, immediately. And there’s a nice CTA button to directly benefit.
Instead of reading a lot of difficult content about why and how much people can save, earn, whatever number you want to use as a USP, a calculator makes it easy and effortless to find out.
Some last words of advice
Want to get your audience hooked on your interactive content? Make sure you keep the following points in mind while creating your content.
- Meet your audience where they are: not only when it comes to the channels they use, but also where they are in their buying journey. Make sure your content matches the knowledge they have so far.
- Don’t overcomplicate it: limit the number of questions or fields one has to fill in. A quiz is fun, but a full-blown test will bring back dark memories of failed high school exams.
- Make sure you use appealing visuals to draw attention to your content, and if suitable, include pictures or even videos of your products when giving recommendations. We perceive information better in images. Show, don’t tell. Wink, wink.
- If you want people to share your content, make sure that you use positive language and always give a positive twist to the results. We don’t like to share anything that is embarrassing or too personal. Oh, and don’t forget to add share buttons. Make it easy!
Ready to get started? We’d love to lend you a hand in creating awesome interactive content – for your audience and ultimately your business. Check out how we can help you with amazing content marketing or shoot us a message to get to work immediately!
Alex Birch is the SEO Manager at Typeform. Lover of all things marketing & search. Originally from Manchester, UK but now enjoying life in sunny Barcelona.