The consumer wants to know more! Between the growth of online commerce where the shopper navigates independently and the desire of a growing portion of the population to consume responsibly, the expectation of product information – or product content – has become important. The customer expects at least to know the characteristics of the product he is interested in to verify that it corresponds to his needs and to buy it with confidence. He will appreciate being surprised or conquered by an explanation of its functions, its manufacturing method, its history … Brands know well the importance of this information to distinguish themselves, attract and then convert a customer who, failing to find the your account, will not hesitate to contact a competitor with the best offer. Good product information also avoids disappointments and product returns at a significant cost. Sometimes it allows the brand to justify a high price positioning.
The omnichannel consumer collects a lot of information collected during the various contacts with the brand.
“ It is not a question of offering everyone the same information but a contextualization and a different look according to the point of contact “observes Emeric Koda, Akeneo’s Southern European Sales Director, specialist in enriching and personalizing product information. After a first level of information on the brand’s mobile application, longer content will be searchable on a computer and eventually completed with an in-store sales employee. On Facebook or Instagram, the brand will bet on the emotional, with impactful images and ultra-personalization … Relying on a Product Information Management (PIM) solution allows you to collect, enrich and contextualize product information, but also to make it circular. “If the initiatives related to the web to store, click & collect, digital points of sale, sales tablets … do not communicate, they lose value”He adds.
Exit static images
In the food sector, product information is essential for trusting and respecting the customer’s food choices. In 2019, long before the health crisis further strengthened health expectations through food, 58% of French people already believed that the information provided was not as accurate as they wanted and 63% considered it incomplete (1). If the packaging leaves little room to go beyond legal notices and labels, merchant sites can make this information more ambitious.. “There are many ways to highlight the specificity of the product and detail its ingredients: in the form of an image, via infographics, even in the manner of a still life … Including the Nutriscore or a Yuka score also informs the consumer about the dietary properties of the product. “, explains Daniel Bô, president of the QualiQuanti research institute. This abundance benefits from being organized: “The brand site should try to compact the information on a single page, provide filters by ingredient or thumbnails that explain the product, so that the consumer can access it without having to browse for too long”he continues.
On the contrary, on the technical products of the sector, the information is sometimes too scarce. “Brands try hard to open a showcase site but don’t convert because the customer has to call customer service or go to the store to finalize the purchase.”, says Emeric Koda. Distribution channels are important. “Rapid product rotation sometimes prevents marketers from highlighting use cases. Information on consumer products sold in food or specialty distribution can be lost. Some brands are therefore developing directly to the consumer to better control their brand image or that of their products., ensures. On its commercial site, Royal Canin offers the same products as its traditional distributors, but with a level of information that the customer would not find in stores, even with a seller.
Consumers sometimes want to compare the performance of different products.
Alsace wines have created a sweetness index to help them identify their different grape varieties. “Many other fields would benefit from creating scales, for example to realize the noise level of vacuum cleaners or the power of hair dryers.”notes the president of QualiQuanti.
The screens portray the product and its use with a wealth of shots, pleasant light, elaborate commentary … The text that appears on the image structures the story and can recall the typing code of the brand. Physical commerce can take advantage of digital screens that have taken over the stores. “They have enormous potential provided they are used intelligently. Chanel broadcast the brand’s show on three vertical screens in its boutique on rue Cambon, taking close-ups of the products. The brand presented the right film in the right place “he argues.
Information on CSR is highlighted too little
Customers are increasingly attentive to the origin of products, their manufacturing conditions, their life cycle, etc. “Brand awareness of CSR can be seen in company leader announcements and annual reports, but still little in the product sheets, confirms Emeric Koda. Elements on respect for the environment, repairability and durability of products appear, but not sufficiently emphasized. The consumer may, however, be interested in a company that practices responsible sourcing or works on repairability. Faced with the lack of confidence in communicating responsible commitments, it is up to the brand to explain what justifies its positioning and how its product is green. “
Before the Egalim law required collective catering to offer 50% sustainable products in its menus, including at least 20% organic products, Sodexo had already noticed that its customers wanted information on organic, kosher, halal, vegan or prepared with local products. The group, which had structured the information offered to its consumers, was able to rely on this database to design innovative services, develop its digital catalog, provide other digital media or points of sale with contextualized and potentially localized information based on consumer expectations. .
Product data sheets tested on the market
New trends in commerce have not yet integrated the full potential of product information. Brands want to sell on the markets without distorting their product image but “Most of these markets do not process product sheets because it is not in their priority and they process too many products”says Emeric Koda. In order not to disappoint the consumer, brands must organize themselves to structure messages, adapt them to the territory and context. “Ensuring that the transformation of technical, practical or emotional information linked to the requirements and constraints of each market is minimal”.
Akeneo’s commercial director is so far unconvinced by the live shopping experiences which, according to him, limit the depth of product information offered to consumers. The stakes remain high: “A lot of information on products and sales proposals should be made available to the influencer or session facilitator to facilitate promotion. And further information to answer questions posed live on the chat”observes.
Daniel Bô regrets that, in their approach to retail media (advertising offers that work with all contact points in the world of distribution), media agencies do not favor the qualitative aspect more: “The editorial audits of brands always have the same defects with ample generality, while it is necessary to offer precise and documented information and to stand from the point of view of the consumer. ” Increasing the power of conviction of the product sheets therefore remains a must to make the most of existing and future growth levers.
(1) OpinionWay survey for Alkemics, The French and transparency on food products, 2019.
What uses of the product content?
P.overview of some examples of product content that highlight the technical specifications of the products, their uses and their values.
Smallable makes quality certificates speak for themselves
Skilled in fashion and sustainable design, the concept store specializing in the world of children and families highlights the work and commitment of its creators with a “Greenable” selection of products that meet different labels (Oeko-Tex, Organic, GOTS, RDS …) If the products are made with recycled materials, organic cotton, wood from eco-managed forests, respect for animal welfare … Eligible products are marked as such in each product family and through a specific form. A lexicon helps the consumer to understand the labels used.
Intersport supplies its stores
The sports brand has centralized all product information so that in-store sellers have sales proposals, associated products, additional recommendations to offer, feed labels, e-commerce, social networks … One PIM ensured that all outlets have the same quality of product information and that the brand values around proximity to the French are preserved, as each store offers 20% local products or products adapted to local life in addition to the national catalog.
BOZ details its positioning
The “zero added sugar” meal bars, designed around a recipe or a product, exhibit on their packaging their qualities as a 100% natural product and produced in France, gluten-free and vegan, and its Nutriscore. On its website, this new brand boasts the eco-responsible spirit of the product and sensitivity to sustainable development, the associated nutritional benefits and the contexts in which it benefits from its use.
Ulysse Nardin promotes the technicality of the product
As is customary in luxury, the Swiss Haute Horlogerie manufactory details the history and values of the brand on its website. In his presentations, he also pays particular attention to explaining the technical nature of his products, both as a source of pride and wonder, and as an undertaking that allows for the perpetuation of an art and a science.
Cartier takes apart his jewels
Giant screens caught the attention of the visitors to the exhibition Cartier and the arts of Islam. At the origins of modernitywhich was held at the Musée des Arts Décoratifs until February 2022. Many of the emblematic jewels of the exhibition have been broken down and reassembled there, graphically relating the phases of their design, from the inspiration of the jeweler to the arrangement of the stones, a 3D animation which allows you to contemplate the jewels from all their angles.