Most website owners realize the importance of having a USP but have difficulty developing one. If you don't differentiate yourself from 100 competitors selling the same product or service you may soon be out of business.
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How To Develop An Effective Unique Selling Position (USP)

If you're selling in a competitive market you need to offer something unique that makes your business, product or service stand out from your competitors. This is defined as your Unique Selling Position or USP. Most website owners realize the importance of having a USP but have difficulty developing one for their own website. If you don't differentiate yourself from 100 competitors selling the same product or service you may soon be out of business.

A unique selling proposition (USP) can be used in many different ways, as a single word, a tag line, a paragraph or even several paragraphs.

The most important thing to include in your USP is "benefits, not features." Focus on main benefits your product or service offers to your potential customers.

How to develop an effective USP

1. Research your competitor's websites

Enter your main keyword in the search engines then study the top 10 competing sites to see if they have a clear USP. Most will not have one so observe the main features or services they emphasize. Look for any gaps you can fill. Perhaps you offer a service they haven't mentioned.

2. Develop your own USP

Create a list of possible USP ideas that will set your business apart from your competitors. Your USP should focus on the main benefits to your customer.

Here are a few examples of USPs to get you thinking:

Unique product line
Years you've been in business
Price of your products
Quality of your products
Large selection of products
Incredible customer support
Personal service
Expert advice
Customization options
Speed of implementation and completion
Guaranteed satisfaction

3. Narrow down your list

Now that you've created a list of possible USPs for your business try to boil it down to a single differentiating concept. Show it to your friends and business associates to get their opinion.

After you've decided on the most unique and compelling feature of your product or service, write one paragraph that clearly communicates and encapsulates why customers should buy from you. This should be the first paragraph visitors read when they visit your website.

You could also narrow it down further to use as a tag line. For example Niki's tag line is "just do it."

Here's some USPs that were pioneers when they were introduced:

o Domino's Pizza: "You get fresh, hot pizza delivered to your door in 30 minutes or less - or it's free."

o FedEx: "When your package absolutely, positively has to get there overnight"

o M&M's: "Melts in your mouth, not in your hand"

o Wonder Bread: "Wonder Bread Helps Build Strong Bodies 12 Ways"

o Head & Shoulders: "You get rid of dandruff"

4. Use your USP everywhere

Add your USP to all your marketing materials. If you've got a good tag line include it on every page of your site, letterhead and business cards. Mention it every time you communicate with potential customers.

Don't just consider developing your USP. Take action by doing it today so your product or service will stand out from your competition. Differentiating yourself from your competitors will result in attracting more customers and increase sales.


Herman Drost is a Certified Web Site Designer, owner and author of www.isitebuild.com Site Design and Low Cost Hosting. Subscribe to his Marketing Tips newsletter for more original articles. subscribe@isitebuild.com. Read more of his in-depth articles at: www.isitebuild.com/articles

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