Welcome! You will learn how to write product descriptions today. It’s no secret that well written product descriptions influence shopping cart conversion rates, search rankings, and much more.
A good product description will go a long way in converting your prospective customers into actual ones. But if not done correctly, it can even hinder your customer’s buying process.
The trick is to be informative and intriguing so that it creates interest but also doesn’t give away too much information nor mislead them.
It seems simple enough, but creating the right words is not always easy. Here are some simple formulas and tips on how to write product descriptions that converts.
What is a product description?
A product description is a piece of content that is used to describe the features and benefits of a particular product. It is one of the most effective ways to generate interest in an offer.
It is most commonly found on web pages or catalogs, but also in print advertisements and other printed media.
Also, product descriptions usually appear on the product page immediately after a visitor clicks to view image thumbnails or for linked products.
The goal of a product description is to take a potential customer’s attention and interest in the product and convert it into an actual sale.
Product descriptions are often featured before or after images of the actual item and can grab the website visitor’s attention.
A good product description generates sales by telling the target audience why they should purchase your product.
1. Define your buyer persona
Step one, and the most important step in creating product descriptions that convert is to know your buyer persona.
- Who exactly do you want to buy from you?
- What kind of person are you targeting?
- What age range?
- Education level?
- Income level?
- Does she have kids or live in an apartment building?
- Does he have a dog or belong to a gym?
Your buyer persona is the specific person you picture when writing a product description.
If your persona is a 25-year-old tech geek who loves shopping online, you’re going to describe a product differently than if your persona is a 50-year-old mother.
Your ability to write effective product descriptions will depend on your understanding of the personas you want to reach. Win over the persona and you win the sale.
Learn more: how to find your niche.
2. Focus on the product’s benefits
If you’re anything like me, you’ll love to see the features listed out on a website and think to yourself, “Yeah! I wanna buy that product because I can do that .”
One of the biggest mistakes you can make in product description writing is to focus on features rather than benefits.
Product benefits, as opposed to features, tell the customer why she needs whatever you’re selling. Each one of the benefits you list should be supported by evidence and proof.
Once again, it’s the little things that add up to gain a prospect’s confidence in your product. For example, if I am shopping for an iPhone case, I don’t want to know the exact dimensions and weight of a case.
That information is meaningless (to my best knowledge). I have no idea how those features affect my user experience as a customer.
What’s more important is the durability of the product (such as drop protection or scratch resistance), how easy it is to use (such as a belt clip), and the overall quality of the product.
3. Tell the full story
Because the product doesn’t have to speak for itself, make it come alive by providing a story. This creates an opportunity for your product to feel like it is relatable, and makes a connection with your customer.
Your product page is the single most important user interface that your customers see. They are trying to understand how your product fits into their lives.
They are trying to understand why they need it and how it makes them feel about themselves. A story may be told in a few words or many words.
The way you structure your sentences—using short, simple sentences and concrete nouns to paint word pictures—should match the length of your product descriptions.
4. Use natural language and tone
Product descriptions should be written in natural language. There is nothing more frustrating than reading a product description that gets technical right away.
Use language your target audience uses that will provide a general overview of the product with most of the details coming from the features.
The difference between writing a product description that entices customers and writing one that puts them to sleep is in the tone.
Boring product descriptions are often characterized by unnatural languages like jargon, legalese, and fillers.
Use clear, simple language when creating your product descriptions: avoid overly technical terms or phrases, legalese (like “herein” and “heretofore”), and business-speak. Nobody speaks like that.
Scientific studies have conclusively demonstrated that your potential customers are highly influenced by the words they read.
Just remember that the product descriptions should be enticing to your target market, without being too general for any possible customer.
5. Appeal to your reader’s imagination
With a large audience comes a wide variety of tastes. Some people prefer to read extremely detailed product descriptions, while others prefer the short and sweet version.
A product that generates positive emotions will attract increased sales more than a product that doesn’t.
Appeal to your reader’s imagination by painting vivid pictures in their minds with detailed descriptions so they can visualize using the product.
As you are writing a product description, try to picture a scene using the product and the scenarios where it would be used.
Does your reader want to be a prom queen? Or does he want his girlfriend to be a prom queen? As you write, imagine your customer’s dream scenario.
When you’re trying to get your reader excited about your product, imagination is a better tool than description. Imagining how it will be to own the thing you’re writing about is far more powerful than describing the hows and whens of its manufacture.
6. Use strong calls to action
Just tell me what to do already!” With so much clutter on the web, attention is a precious commodity.
If you could read your customers’ minds you’d know that they’re itching for a clear call to action (CTA). Instead of building the features into the body of your copy, save it for the end where it’s more natural: at the click-point.
That’s why underlining a call to action is important. The underlining gives it the attention it needs to stand out from the text flow and grab your visitors’ attention.
Wherever possible try adding an underlined call to action at the end of your product description which directs potential buyers to buy now or take the next step.
Some examples of strong calls to action: “Download it now.” or “Buy now for $19.95.”
7. Make it scannable
Scannable product descriptions are created to let customers read your description without effort. Customers should be able to quickly navigate through your product description and identify their needs.
Your customer has a short attention span. He wants to buy a new laptop and he wants to make sure if it will fit his needs before buying.
To help him make a decision, tell him what he can do if he buys that item.
- What features does your product have?
- How can those features solve his needs (benefit)?
Once you’ve listed out the benefits, outline them in bullet points so your reader can get an idea of what they’re about.
8. Optimize your copy for search engines
We all know that the best way to get traffic from organic search results is to be ranked number one.
While this is still the case, there has been a significant increase in click-through rates when the copy of the ad includes relevant keywords.
Therefore, to make your product’s description more appealing to both users and search engines, optimize your text with the most relevant keywords.
SEO is an essential part of an eCommerce business. If you see that your potential customers are searching for specific products, then you need to optimize your copy for search engines.
For example, if you are selling a Weber gas grill then you should include the “weber grill” in your product description.
The goal of optimizing your copy is to have your product page show up towards the top of the search results for relevant keywords.
This helps increase your sales as you target potential customers looking specifically for your product. Besides, convinces them that they should buy from you rather than someone else.
9. Use good product images
Good product images are vital to creating a good online store. They help customers build confidence in their decision to buy your products.
Product photography tells more than what you can describe in words. A picture says 1000 words. Product images are the most important part of the product description.
Many people tend to scan for the product images on Amazon, as they want to see the item’s appearance without actually ordering it.
Study your competition and see how they use images in their product listings.
What is a good product description?
A good product description answers the question of what and why your product is needed by the customer. It should answer the following questions:
- Why should I buy this?
- What does it contain?
- How does it work?
- Does it have features that make it better than its competitors?
- Who is the target audience and how easy is it to use?
- Can I trust the brand behind it?
Being succinct will help you communicate all of these points in a short amount of time.
How long should product descriptions be?
The answer depends on the product and your strategy. Product descriptions should be long enough to give customers the gist of your product.
Make it so that they can see whether or not the product is for them, especially if there are too many other products on the page to compare. Try to avoid being very wordy in order not to discourage readers.
You don’t want to make them lose interest because then they may not find the one they are looking for and instead leave your site without making a purchase.
Besides, if one of your goals is to boost conversion rates, the answer may be long. If you’re a marketplace that needs to keep descriptions short because of the sheer number of products, the answer may be short.
How do you write a product description?
The best way to write a product description is to have a comprehensive knowledge of your product features and the benefits of those features.
Also, include keywords relevant to your product, because the more you manage to include the better.
Your buyer is going to be looking at your product description all the time. They will want it and expect it to be informative enough for them to know exactly what it is you are selling them.
These product descriptions are one of the most important parts of making a sale. The sellers that are good at writing them are those that always have steady business and buyers returning to their stores time and time again.
Can I copy a product description from a competitor?
It depends on what you mean by copy. You can certainly draw inspiration from a competitor’s product description. In fact, finding new angles requires copying your competition (and also your non-competitors).
Product descriptions can be crafted from just about any source, including competitor’s sites. Just make sure that the information is not posed as new or original content.
If you copy full sentences or paragraphs without changing the tone, you could get yourself in trouble with search engines, and your account may be flagged for a potential infringement claim.
Changes such as formatting the text, using bulleted lists for easier reading, adding questions within the text, and tailoring it to your product are all acceptable changes.
Who should use product descriptions?
Product descriptions are useful for any type of business. They can be used in an e-commerce setting, a brick-and-mortar shop, or a product catalog.
Some may use their product description in one place while others like to have their product description in at least three places.
The choice depends on how much space you have. Also, how much you can spend marketing your product, how much information you want to include. It also depends on the target market for your product.
Product descriptions can be marketing gold or lead generation poison. Yet, while some product descriptions are difficult to write, it is possible to craft a product description that not only gets sales leads but also creates raving fans.
None of this matters if your users don’t understand why our product is the best solution. So explain its upsides, how it improves their lives and solves their problems.
Tell them what makes your solution different and better than others. Make them fall in love with your product before they buy.