Interesting news came across the internet this morning. One of the Wall Street Journal's subsidiary websites, Marketwatch.com, posted a little story about JCPenney coming back with their traditional catalog (read the entire story here: http://bit.ly/JCPenneySFO).
Why would a big 120-page print catalog be successful in today's digital world? Quite frankly we're not giving shoppers everything they want and need to make a solid purchasing decision.
Catalogs offer a customer the chance to pick the book up and shop at anytime, circle favorite items, mark pages that interest them WITHOUT ANY CRAP. It seems today that e-commerce means delivering the biggest, shiniest whistle along with the loudest bell to get noticed -- and yes, getting noticed is important -- but really all shoppers want is every piece of necessary information that is easy to see, read, save and order.
Ordering from a catalog is simple. You call the number, tell the item number you're buying, pay for the item and wait for the item to be delivered. Have you went through any e-commerce check outs lately? It's upsell after upsell, "if you like this, you'll LOVE this," and "you can't have that without getting this, too." Plus, now you can't even tell who you're buying from on a company's website (that's another discussion to have later on). With a catalog, what you see is what you get.
The one thing I love about catalogs is how they tend to tell a story about the item. In 75 words, a good writer can have you picturing in your mind you holding or using the item that you're looking at.
Forget fancy and forget trying to match what every other website does because, well, they might be clueless.
All you have to do is make good content! Be honest. Be straight. Be simple. Sell your items not an experience.
Larry is a content marketing professional, an experienced copywriter, avid fisherman, amateur sailor, teller of kinda funny jokes, pancake connoisseur and an overall OK guy who founded Sawfish Online.