E-Commerce Value Proposition – Crafting Your Store’s Winning USP (Updated Guide)

Why should someone buy from you and not your competition? If you don’t know the answer to this (or if you think you do but the answer isn’t compelling enough), then sadly, your store will never convert clicks into customers at its full potential.

The reality is that every single one of your store’s shoppers will ask – usually sub-consciously – but which ridiculously few e-commerce store owners bother to deal with.

“Why should I choose you?”

Before they get their wallets out, they want to feel that they’re in the very best place to get whatever it is you’re selling and don’t need to bother looking elsewhere.

Let’s face it, in today’s world of bountiful choice and glutenous distraction. You have just a few seconds to give your Shopify store’s visitors a good enough reason to stay on your site. If you don’t, they’re going to bounce straight back to where they came from and eventually find their way to your competition who’ll win the sale.

But it doesn’t have to be this way, you just need to always make sure you differentiate yourself.

Make sure that you do it prominently on your store and in every single message you send out or run…

Because if you don’t, you’re making things needlessly hard for your customers.

They have to base their choice on little more than guesswork. Like throwing darts at a board while wearing a blindfold.

Famed marketer, Rosser Reeves, built a huge advertising agency by finding and promoting a kind of differentiation: he called it the USP – the unique selling proposition.

Rosser’s idea was simple (like all good ones)…

It was to find one benefit nobody else could offer and hammer it home relentlessly.

Of course, that may be easier said than done because many e-commerce stores are similar. Especially if you’re dropshipping from AliExpress for example.

But there are many ways to skin a cat. For example, you may not have anything unique, but there may be something you do that others also do – but don’t talk about.

If you’re the only store saying it, you own it.

A good example is the Carphone Warehouse. Were they the only store offering advice to phone buyers? No. They were just the only ones saying so.

What’s more, if others in your niche start talking about the benefit you’re promoting. They can even end up doing the selling for you.

That’s because you’ve fixed that particular benefit in people’s minds and they associate your store with it.

Split-testing software, VWO reported a mammoth 250% increase in conversions for one of its users. sustyparty.com when they tested their value proposition on the home page.

E-Commerce Value Proposition
Susty split-test their homepage which included a compelling value proposition.
They increased conversions by a whopping 250%.

The new variation establishes both points of parity and points of difference allowing the visitor to immediately understand what Susty Party is all about— it sells party-ware.

Not only that, but the visitor is also told exactly what differentiates Susty Party from other stores that sell party-ware—it’s non-toxic and compostable.

Then with the sub-heading, it is made abundantly clear that the business is based in North America (people like to buy from their own country).

And on top of that, telling visitors that when they buy, they would be indirectly helping blind people earn a living. That adds another layer of appeal to customers that already care enough about the planet to seek out earth-friendly party-ware.

But don’t be misled here. The older version didn’t have a call-to-action which means clicks on the home page banner were bound to be low. But that still doesn’t take away from the fact that the variation engages visitors much better, enticing them to click the CTA through to the product page.

This case study, proves that one special benefit is good, but several can skyrocket your business.

The more reasons you give, the better you do.

Sometimes by bundling a few together, you end up with a sort of packaged USP or a “Value proposition” as I like to call it.

Here’s a list of 21 things to start you thinking:

Are you unique?
Better value?
The most trusted?
The friendliest?
The first?
The top seller?
The most tested?
Give quicker service?
The most advanced?
The latest?
The oldest?
The most loved?
The one experts prefer?
The most reliable?
More fun?
Sold in a special way?
Easier to deal with?
More helpful?

I know it can seem hard to find a point of difference if you’re selling something that isn’t unique, especially as the business owner, you’re on the inside of the bottle trying to read the label, so to speak.

But dig deep and put the time into nailing your value proposition, it will reward you now and long into the future.

The Shoptimized™ Theme makes it ridiculously easy to sing your value proposition from the roof-tops, if you’re not using it yet on your store, it’s the highest converting Shopify theme.

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Bradley Long

Bradley Long

Bradley is a Conversion Rate Expert and store owner since 2005. He’s helped some of the world’s most sophisticated brands to double and sometimes triple their conversion rates. He architected the #1 unofficial Shopify theme, Shoptimized™ and is also CEO of Funnel Buildr, the perfect tool for massively growing your store’s Average Order Value.

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