How do I use comparisons for website content?

This is a question we all have asked and been asked. We are a society that has a need to know—to know what is the fastest, the slowest, the warmest, the coldest, the best and the worst of all things large and small. For instance, what is the difference between an Android and an iPhone? Or between a Mac and a PC? What makes one better or worse than the other? Is it the features, the software, the price?

These are the types of answers consumers are searching for online. Providing this information on your website is a way to give something of value to your customers and meet their needs. If they don’t find these answers on your website they will simply go elsewhere, never to be heard from again.

What would you do?
Have you ever had a customer ask “If you were me, what would you do?” or “Which would you choose?” Well, what would you do? This is the perfect place to start with your comparison content. Give your honest and unbiased opinion—one that has been well researched and backed by facts. This is what your customer wants and expects.

Top 4 comparisons
Following are four of the top comparisons consumers search for online.

1) Price comparisons. This includes the prices between different versions of a product, such as the iPhone 6 and the iPhone 7. It can also be price comparisons between competitors—Sprint vs. Verizon. Consumers are going to look up this information anyway, so why not make it easy and do the legwork for them? Talking about cost is a form of being transparent and lets your customers know that you have nothing to hide. For further information on the importance of discussing pricing on your website, read our article How much will this cost?

2) Review comparisons. This can include product reviews, competitor reviews, customer service reviews and more. Consumers want to know what other customers are saying. Did they like the product? Did it perform as promised? How was the customer service? Reviews matter. Have you ever not eaten at a restaurant because of a bad review? As consumers, we don’t want to waste our money or our valuable time on anything that does not measure up to our standards. Reading reviews from other like-minded individuals helps us to streamline the decision-making process. Whatever your company offers, there is sure to be a customer review on a comparable product or service. Amazon has long led the pack in utilizing customer reviews. These same reviews, if used properly, can be advantageous to your own website. For example, if you sell kayaks, research different reviews on the specific models you sell (contact allySites for more information on how this can be achieved). Choose reviews that are factual and relevant to the item, good or bad. Let your customer be the judge of what matters to them. Another option is to make your own reviews. Here is an example from the outdoor adventure company Austin Kayak. They wrote their own review according to the 5 Bestselling Kayaks. Providing reviews on your website is a great tool to give prospective customers the information they want to know.

3) Comparing Features. What features are most important to your buyer? What is the difference between brands or models? Help your customer find the best fit according to their needs. For an example, when buying a tent, a few of the features you would want to consider are the number of windows, the sleeping capacity, and ease of setup. Take a look at this link on the Davis Tent website to see how they addressed questions on the features and options available on their tents. If you are a home builder, compare the differences between vinyl vs. aluminum or wood windows. Explore different options and share information that will help your customers make an informed decision. Start the conversation and keep it going—talk about size, weight, length, material, hardware, software and then compare, compare, compare.

4) Comparing your competitors. If you think people won’t check out the competition before making a purchase, think again. With all the price matching guarantees, major companies are offering, it is a given, consumers are going to shop around. Go ahead and give them the detailed information they will search for anyway—right on your website. Chances are, they won’t make the extra effort to shop somewhere else unless there is a substantial price difference. Here is where customer service plays a big role. Compare what your competitors do or don’t offer. Is there any type of customer satisfaction guarantee? Can a customer call them with questions and concerns about the purchase made? Do your competitors have real-life experience with the product? What are their strengths and weaknesses? For example, if you have an auto-repair shop, start with main franchise organizations and car dealers. One example might be to answer the question, “Should you take your car to an auto repair shop or a dealership?” Read a great answer to this very question by  RC Auto Specialists. It is no secret that your competitors want customers as much as you do. Not every customer is the right fit for your business. Being open about the differences and similarities of the competition will only help build credential for your own business. By comparing your competitors, you can help direct the right customers to the right place and end up with a perfect match.

Make it easy.
Consumers want convenience and if they can find all the answers to their questions in one place, that makes it easier for them. Keep your comparisons short and to the point, addressing only the issues that are relevant to the item or service and to your customer. As a business owner, you make comparisons every day in your own purchasing decisions. There are reasons you choose one brand over another or one style over another, so pass it on! Give your customer the inside scoop and in the process give them the information they can use. Convert searchers into finders and even better yet, browsers into buyers.

I Want More Information.