4 Tips to Help You Critique Your Catalog’s Cover

Covers are usually the first thing customers see. If you can get them to open the catalog and start shopping your chances of making a sale skyrocket.

1. Does Your Cover Appeal to Your Audience? 
If your customers are chic the cover needs to be beautiful. Make sure you are spending enough on photography to delight your discerning customers. Keep covers uncluttered and make sure your type looks sharp and is well designed. If your target customer is cheap your cover needs to shout savings. Cheap customers are in it for the deals, don’t be shy, shout them right out.

2. Have You Put Your Best Foot Forward?
Are your key competitive advantages being called out? An example of this would be if you have a great in-stock average for your products, say 99% are in-stock, is that clearly visible on the cover? If you have the largest assortment of widgets does it say so? This seems simple but it is often overlooked or lost over time.

3. Does it Sell, Sell, Sell?
Are there drivers into the catalog? Something as simple as “25 new products—look inside!” can make a big difference. “The best garden hose you can buy, see page xx”. “Look inside for great deals on quilting fabrics starting on page xx.” All of these create curiosity and get customers to start the shopping process.

4. Have You Given Your Customers a Good Reason to Shop?
Is there an offer? Free gift with purchase, $10 off for new customers, BOGO, and of course Free Shipping are all classic offers that get customers to open your catalog.

This month has been Critique Month at the Cat-U Pub. Next up is Brent Niemuth’s brand critiques. If you have not had a chance to watch a critique, it is a great way to pick up tips and see a catalog, website or email through the eyes of an expert. Pub Talks are free and first come first serve. (If you are a subscriber to Cat-U they are recorded and in the Library.)

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The Catalog Blog covers opinions and information on all things catalog. Have something to add? Leave a comment below. Catalog University is devoted to helping you get ahead in the fun and fascinating world of catalogs. If you want even more information about cataloging, including FREE Pub Talks, be sure to sign up for the Cat-U mailing list. We will never share your name with 3rd parties.

All the best,
Sarah Fletcher
President/Creative Director Catalog Design Studios Inc.
Co-Founder Catalog University