3rd website page to build: “Products and Services offered”

Page 3: Services Offered / Products

We’ve done the “Contact” page so that customers can get basic information about our business and get a hold of us online or visit us offline. Some people JUST put up a “business card” page, with ONLY this info. That is a poor show in my humble opinion, but it is better than nothing! We’ve created (or at least are in the process of creating) a “Testimonials” page that enhances your credibility and, in a language they understand, gives the customer a reason to pick you specifically over your competitors. 

Great work so far. Let’s keep it up. Now we’re onto the third page: The “Services” or “Products” page. This is important because the reader needs to know in no uncertain terms what you are offering. If you have product and service descriptions in your existing brochure, you can just use those for now. Copy and paste them into the blank “Product/Services” page you created earlier. 

Follow the same process we used for the “Contact Us” page. Simply open the page you’ve created and copy and paste existing text or type in new text. To write this page effectively, you have to understand that a prospective customer’s first reaction to any offering is this:What’s in it for me? 

Did you read that last 2 posts on writing good website copy? Let’s face it: We are not all Mother Teresa. We want to get something out of the deal. Everyone is tuned to ONE radio station: WiiFM = “What’s in it for me?!” 

We need that motivation to take action. So it makes sense that you have to answer that question before you can expect the customer to buy from you. And the “Services” page is where you have a chance to explain how they’ll benefit by purchasing from you.
Side note: Just for simplicity’s sake, I’m calling this the “Services” page, but you can call it the “Products” page or the “Products/Services” page or “Services offered” (as I chose to on my site) depending on your business views and plans. Unfortunately, most businesses focus on talking about themselves instead of the customer. Of course, we are not going to do that. Even though we are talking about products and services, we are not going to talk about what we do and what we sell.Instead, we’ll talk about what the customer gets out of the services and products we sell. We are going to talk about benefits.

We are going to stay focused solely on the customer and their needs. And because it’s all about them, the customer is going to find the description of our services captivating. Let me give you a couple of examples and this concept will be much easier to understand.  Here’s a brief description of a massage service directly off the web: “I provide a variety of soft tissue techniques. I provide Swedish massage  although every session includes a bit of craniosacral work as this is much more effective at getting at the deep fascia.” Does that mean anything to you?

Here’s the service written from a customer benefit perspective: “Do you know how a lot of people suffer from incredible tension in their shoulders and get terrible headaches as a result? Well if you’re one of those people, I can help you remember what it’s like to have a relaxed, pain-free neck.”In this second description, I’m speaking directly to the kind of person is who visiting that website and I’ve identified what’s in it for them: a feeling of relaxation and relief from chronic pain. 

Let me give you another IT business example and I just pulled this off the web. Compare this:We provide cost-effective business enterprise solutions for corporations looking for wireless and mobile technology infrastructure to support field communication across your network of associates.  To this what they COULD have written: “We sell affordable cell phones and other wireless tools to help your sales staff communicate more effectively with each other so they can close more deals and sell more product.”Of course, these are just short examples to illustrate a point. But can you identify some of the differences between the two? Let me point some of these out and give you some guidelines in writing this page.

  1. Write in plain English, not jargon. Writing complicated terms or expressions from your industry does not impress your readers. It makes them confused. And once they start feeling confused, they are going to leave your site.

  2. Point out the specific benefit from your product or service. One way to do this is to list a feature of your product and then answer the question, “So what?”
    After all, that’s the question that the readers are asking themselves. For example, “This car comes with seatbelts and side door airbags. (So what?) This ensures that everyone in your car, including the little ones in the back are safe in the event of an accident.”

Here’s a description of a massage course off the web, geared toward middle-aged women that follows these rules:

Our unique training method has been meticulously developed and refined over almost ten years. It is designed to take anyone, including you, through a highly accelerated learning process. It’s a highly structured program with eachtechnique building on the foundation of the ones before. You’ll develop expertise at a lightning fast rate. After only two weekends of training we unleash you on the public so you can see first hand your incredible development. You’ll be astounded as you watch one customer after another fall blissfully under the spell of your “magic” hands. I know you’re doubtful. That’s exactly why we get you out there working with real people. You have to see it to believe it. Why is it so important to us that you master these massage techniques quickly? Because your time is precious. It’s important that you don’t waste your time. Don’t misunderstand. I don’t believe in cutting corners, but I also don’t believe you should waste your valuable time. Life is way too short. You should get the maximum result for every minute you invest in anything you do. So we’ve developed an accelerated learning process so you don’t have to spend countless hours in class. You shouldn’t have to quit your job or sacrifice precious time with your family. 

Notice the feature in the first paragraph is a structured accelerated learning process. So what? It helps you learn quickly. So what? You don’t waste your time. So what? You can spend precious time with your family. And that’s the ultimate benefit for this market: Having a job that allows them to spend time with their family.

3. Tell a story

Oftentimes, we are so familiar with our product or service that we take it for granted and forget that there is an interesting story behind it. Give the reader some insight into what goes on behind the scenes to provide them with your product and they’ll feel more educated, smarter and “in the know”.
Don’t think your product or service has a story? Let me give you another example. I made a video about Myofascial Release so that I could appeal to the people who preferred to learn via seeing and hearing versus reading. I tell stories, and use metaphors as well as visual aides to describe the benefits and effects of our work. Feel free to link to it on your site.

If you’re feeling stuck about what to write, then visit my and JFB’s site and see how we describe services. Use the descriptions for inspiration, but don’t copy them. Speak in a language your prospects understand and always focus on the benefits to them. I have often thought about dropping my services description of my McKenzie training. But I have not because it generates a lot of web interest would you believe?! I monitor this closely on my web statistics, that tells me how many unique visits the site gets, which pages people go to, how long they spend there, which links are clicked on, how they found it (i.e. which search engine they used, and what phrase they typed in) – the options for analysis are endless.

So here’s your task: Write something and put it on your Products/Services page even if the perfectionist inside you says it’s horrible. The hardest part is getting some initial text posted. Once it’s there you can edit, rework or play around with it as much as you like.

But for now get something written and published on that page.  If you have something written already – perhaps information from your brochure – the process should take two minutes as you copy and paste into your Products/Services page. If not, take just 15 to 30 minutes to write something now – anything! Once that’s done we are almost half way done and only have a few more pages to go. The good news is, it only gets easier! Warmly,

Scott van Niekerk

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