Overcoming Objections in Product Copy

If you have an ecommerce site, and you’re wondering how to tighten up your product copy, this post is for you.

In any business, you’re going to have people who love your product. These are your repeat buyers.

You’re also going to have people who are not in your market. These people won’t buy from you no matter what you do.

But what about those in the middle? They are kind of interested, but they are also a little doubtful. This is where powerful product copy can help you win them over.

One of the ways to write better product copy is to put yourself in your prospect’s shoes and think about the reasons why not to buy your product. Only when you overcome objections in your product descriptions will you persuade someone to buy.

Since consumers are not always vocal about the reasons why (they’d rather shimmy off toward the next product), it may never be known that the reason why your product isn’t selling well.

In order to understand your product from the consumer’s point of view, you must become a critical consumer. Smart salespeople and marketers know ahead of time what objections prospects will have – and the smarter ones already know how to reply to them.

This means if you have an ecommerce site, and you aren’t sure why more people on the site aren’t purchasing, it’s time to roll up your sleeves and figure out WHY they aren’t buying.

David Ogilvy and the AGA Pressure Cooker

In June of 1935, the legendary copywriter David Ogilvy published a manual intended to help door-to-door pressure cooker salesmen (in that time, all salespeople were men. Ladies, we’re not leaving you out intentionally!).

In his work, named “Theory and Practice of Selling the Aga Cooker,” Ogilvy lists several objections with ways to overcome them. Having the experience of dealing with critical consumers, he gives precise explanations on how to give the right answers that’ll lead to a sale.

Before sharing some of the examples, consider the culture of the 1930’s. While his article illustrates effective sales strategy, his phrasing today would be sexist.

It is too big for my kitchen.”

Bolony (sic) always. It only looks big because it does not, like gas stoves, stand on legs. Make the objection a pretext for going into the kitchen to measure, and to continue the conversation there. Among other advantages of selling in the kitchen is that the cook will be in earshot and you can kill two birds with one stone.

Continue: There is no danger of getting burned with an Aga, so that it is possible to go right up to it. You have to give a range a very wide berth. You can sit on the Aga. It is an uncommon kind of kitchen maid in that it does not get in your way.

“I prefer turning on a tap or a switch.”

Fuelling the Aga is dustproof. Show in the Catalogue how the fuel is injected. It is easier and quicker to inject coke once or twice a day than to turn switches and taps and wait for the heat.

“I am only renting my present house.”

The Aga is not a fixture. You can take with you when you move. We make a small charge for dismantling and re-erecting it in your new house.

Although his manual was for in-person sales, you can see how–if applied to your product copy–you could proactively overcome objections.

By the way, if you want to read Ogilvy’s complete manual, this website has a complete transcript.

Be a Critical Consumer

If you are ready to sell more products online, you can start right now by drawing a line down the middle of a piece of paper.

On the left side, write all possible objections. Be the harshest critic you can be. Imagine all objections for your product. Consider what it would take you not to buy. List all the objections you’ve heard in the past—whether by email, phone, social media, or in person.

Now, on the right side of the paper, come to the rescue and show how your product solves those objections. Remove all the doubts your raise, and show how your product is the one, and only answer.

By doing so, you will have a solid amount of information you can use to write product description copy.

All it takes is the overcoming of that one objection to tilt the balance to your favor, so do not hold back.

Be the worst critic toward your product, so you can create your best copy for it.

If you’re interested in more tips about writing product copy, click here to see all of the posts we’ve written about this topic.

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