A catalog is a useful tool in promoting and selling your products for almost any industry. However, like many marketing instruments, it’s not always working as well as we would like to. Being one of the most powerful catalog creating tools and accumulating all the team experiences together with client’s stories, we have developed an easy 5 step strategy on creating catalogs that actually sell. Keep reading to know more!
Step 1. Do your research before start
At this stage, you need to understand what’s currently going on in the market and how you can fit there. There is a 2Cs rule that will help to make effective research: clients & competitors.
From the client’s side, you need to understand why they would never open, scan, and order something from your catalog. In other words, what’s a pain point, and how you are solving it.
Whereas competitors are a good source of inspiration. Look through the catalogs and notice which design principles are they implementing, what photos are they using, are there any promotions. Make notes of what you like & don’t like. You don’t want to copy others’ work, but you can definitely use it as a trampling.
Step 2. Do a catalog mock-up
Put the results of your research on paper and see how you can use it. At this stage, you can draw the schemes of the different catalog pages. No need to put every single detail there, just make sure that you have a place for all the necessary things. Here is a list you can use as a cheat sheet:
- Product info: photo, name, price, description. Extend the list based on the industry requirements.
- Contact info: phone, email, etc. Make sure this information can be easily found. The best places are the header or footer of every page.
- Cover page. Include your company name, name of the catalog, and the date range, ex. Autumn 2021 collection.
- Table of contents. Based on the categories or collections that you have.
- Company overview. Telling your story is not necessarily, but it helps to build an emotional connection between brand and customer.
- Call to action. Make sure you say what exactly the client is supposed to do to complete the order, ex. Call us, Order from a catalog, etc.
Step 3. Work on your product database
There is no catalog without products. This is why you should think carefully about the order and quantity of products and information you will use in your products.
Remember people are busy so no one will read paragraphs of the product description. This is why try to keep only necessary information on the pages of your catalog. The trick we are using, reread the description a couple of times and make a goal to cross out at least 10% of the text every time.
One more thing, never use professional language, unless you are completely sure that your target audience is familiar with it. Firstly, people will never search on what exactly it means. Secondly, people do not like to feel ignorant. Make people feel good about themselves and only then they will buy.
Place the best-selling products at the beginning. For whatever reason people love them, use them to make new customers like your catalog from the very beginning. In addition, you can include a special page that says “Best Sellers”. Here you include products you need to get rid of. Make people think that others like your products, which means this choice is already socially pre-approved.
With Catalog Machine you can manage hundreds and thousands of products at once. Enjoy the power of automation.
Step 4. Create your catalog online
At this point, you already know how your catalog should look like, what information you will be using, and how people will order. Now it’s time to put everything into the actual catalog.
With Catalog Machine you can create your template for each product or create a custom layout for the pages. So, if you have hundreds or thousands of products, there is no need to do it manually. In addition, with the new parameters feature you can automatically allocate discounts to your products, present a catalog with different currencies and many more.
If at this stage you are still not sure what design you want to use, select one of our predefined templates and customize it with your product fields, company’s creative assets, and your brand color scheme. Click to preview the templates and select your favorite.
Step 5. Double-check & share the results
Make sure you double-check everything before publishing your catalog. Use your colleague or friend as a second pair of eyes, they usually notice something that you have missed. Ask them if everything is clear from your catalog, do they have any additional questions, if anything can be improved? Use the information to revise your creation one more time.
Now you should be ready to make your catalog public and start accepting orders. Press publish button and enjoy new sales and orders coming with Catalog Machine!