How to get the most out of your eCommerce digital content

This is a guest post from HINGE Global, which recently held a webinar on how digital content can help you achieve your coffee eCommerce goals. NCA Members can view a recording of the webinar here, and learn more about Hinge’s Amazon Coffee Data Dashboard here.


In the US, eCommerce has grown by 32.4% since the start of the pandemic, and the US Department of Commerce shows that by the end of 2021, eCommerce will make up 13% of total retail sales (up from just 4% 10 years ago). 

The “endless aisles” of eCommerce means that consumers have easy access to millions of products that meet their specific needs. In 2021, there were 36,263 coffee products across 1,769 different brands, over 100X more than a typical grocery store!

All this means that winning in eCommerce requires a different approach than traditional retail stores.  E-Commerce managers need to make sure that the products can be discovered by consumers (via search), that consumers understand the product benefits (via the product detail page), and that consumers are persuaded to buy (i.e., conversion). Plus, consumer expectations continue to rise. Consumers shop multiple channels and are constantly comparing product offerings across sites.  This means that best-in-class digital content is critical to helping brands win in eCommerce.

1. Great copywriting (and keywords) helps your product be found in search.  The goal of copywriting to improve your brand’s organic search rank within the category.  Improving organic search results will also improve the return on advertising spending, because your marketing dollars will not have to work as hard. The secret to great copywriting is the artful blend of channel-specific keyword research, coupled with persuasive and clear writing, all while staying true to your brand’s voice. 

2. Product photography and lifestyle images drive conversioneCommerce shoppers spend less than four seconds before they click on a specific product listing. This is why it is critical to have eye-catching and appealing digital images. Product images need to grab shoppers’ attention, communicate the key benefits, and persuade consumers to buy the product.  Given the importance of product images, we strongly recommend that eCommerce sellers have at least 5 images per product listing.  To maximize eCommerce sales, all images should be created with a mobile-first approach.

3. Enhanced Brand Content (also known as Rich Media or A+ Content) boosts conversions by 12%-36%, according to Walmart.com. In fact, some retailers are starting to mandate the use of Enhanced Brand Content because of the improved customer experience.  Enhanced Brand Content typically sits below-the-fold, just before product reviews.  Because of this position, many consumers will scroll to this section while they do additional product research before making an online purchase.


HINGE GLOBAL is a leading full-service eCommerce agency, with particularly strong experience in Coffee and Foodservice.  Their team of eCommerce experts can help you optimize your online product detail pages, copywriting, and enhanced content.  Additionally, through their partnership with Salsify, HINGE GLOBAL can publish all your digital content to all your eCommerce sites, including Amazon.com, Walmart.com, Target.com, Shopify, and more. Reach out to HINGE GLOBAL for more information at contact@hingeglobal.com.

Flavor as the common thread for coffee quality along the value chain

Coffee cupping prep ©2019 Decisive Moment, NCA Convention

The role of cupping in specialty coffee

By Mario R. Fernández-Alduenda, The Coffee Quality Institute
Excerpted from The Sustainable Cultivation of Coffee
Discount available for NCA members


The popularity of coffee is still growing, but the definition of what makes a ‘good’ cup of coffee is complex.

It might be tempting to think that it is largely subjective, with so many types of coffee grown around the world, so many processes to consider throughout the value chain, and so many local and national preferences.

However, the sustainability of the industry depends on the value placed on certain types of coffee. Local economies can thrive or fail, depending on the desirability of their crop.

The growing preference for ‘specialty’ coffee, sold at a premium price, is making the quality question even more critical. The ability to distinguish specific characteristics that make some crops more desirable than standard commercial coffee has become a major consideration over the last 20 years.

Physical characteristics of the bean or cherry are not good indicators of flavor in the cup, so how is this important choice to be made?

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How To Communicate TRUE Coffee Quality

Baristas training to make the perfect cup of coffee

Learn more about coffee quality: Join Blue Donkey Coffee for a specialty coffee cupping at the 2019 NCA Convention in Atlanta, March 7-9


The following article was originally published as the first installment of a 2-part special series in Tea and Coffee Trade Journal in the July/August 2018 and September 2018 issues

By Spencer Turer, Coffee Enterprises – via LinkedIn

“Coffee professionals are enthusiastic, passionate and place a high priority on product education – but we often create jargon and use insider’s vernacular not easily understood by consumers.”


How do we encourage or persuade customers to try our coffee?

Communicating the virtues of the coffee will attract the attention of buyers, for both green coffee and roasted coffee.

The success of any beverage program starts with quality: how does it taste? Branding, promotion and merchandising will capture the first sale, but only quality will keep your customers returning time after time.

Together we will explore how to create TRUE coffee descriptions:

Trustworthy, Realistic, Understandable, Enticing.

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5 Key Training Principles For Quality Coffee Service

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Effective training is critical to make your specialty coffee program a success.

By Anne Nylander


Current coffee trends point to an ever-increasing demand in product quality.

Excellent customer service, preparation skills, and organization are rapidly becoming minimum expectations in the café environment.

As coffee quality becomes increasingly important in coffee service, training becomes a critical component of a company’s long-term success. High-quality skills and behavior training remain as one of the industry’s proven methods for increased customer satisfaction and sales growth.

When it comes to training, there are several factors that can impact a trainer’s successes or failures.

In her 2018 workbook, Specialty Coffee Training Consultant Anne Nylander tackles the key training principles organization leaders and educators will need in order to make their program a success.

Here, we briefly cover five of the principles discussed in the book:

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NCA Cold Brew Toolkit: FAQs

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New! NCA Workshop for Coffee Professionals:

The Business & Safety of Cold Brew | Nov. 6 | Sponsored by: Toddy, LLC


What is cold brew coffee?

“At its core, cold brew is a brewing method, not a serving method,” explains Mark Corey, Ph.D., NCA Director of Scientific & Government Affairs.

Dr. Corey led a team of specialized experts to develop the NCA Cold Brew Toolkit, now available to the entire coffee industry. (Read more background about the report and related food safety considerations.)

The Toolkit offers science-based technical guidance and recommended best practices – visit the NCA website for more details.

While working on the report, we received a lot of questions – from consumers and companies alike – about the beverage market’s hottest trend.

Here are some expert-approved answers to common questions about what “cold brew coffee” really means:

NCA Cold Brew Coffee FAQs

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The Science Behind Better Coffee

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Photo credit: UC Davis Newsroom

Basket Shapes & Water Quality: Filter Coffee in the UC Davis Lab

By Angie Molina

Article & photos from our friends at Perfect Daily Grind

Lee este artículo en español Filtros Y Calidad Del Agua: Café Filtrado en El Laboratorio

What do you need to do to brew better filter coffee? That’s one of the many questions UC Davis Coffee Center is setting out to answer, through a variety of research projects. After all, there’s nothing like hard science for an answer you can trust.

Professor William Ristenpart, the center’s Director, agreed to talk me through his current work and what we can expect to see in the future, from the impact of coffee filter baskets to water quality and temperature.

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