Writing product descriptions isn’t as easy as it looks, so I’m happy to welcome back Pawel Grabowski with some tips on this writing skill.
Running an ecommerce store is not easy.
I really don’t want to sound too dramatic but each day it gets more and more difficult to convince people to buy.
Online retailers employ various strategies, such as price, speed of service, convenience or personalization to differentiate their shops from the competition.
However, among all these, one simple method is still one of the strongest ways to convince visitors to buy from you – a good, solid product description.
The purpose of this post is to give you an overview of what I have discovered to be the most effective elements of a good product description.
But to begin at the beginning, let’s look at who you will be writing for in the first place.
Two Types of Customers You Will Be Writing For
There are two types of buyers you will ultimately be writing for:
- Casual researchers
- People looking to buy a specific product
The main characteristic of this group is that they don’t have a specific product in mind. These people have identified a problem and are looking for a solution. They know they need some sort of a product to achieve this but they haven’t selected a specific one to buy yet.
These buyers are quite hard to sell to. They realize that they might need to make the purchase, however they might not be ready to do so yet.
The most important thing for them is to be told if the product can fulfill their need.
Specific Product Buyers
Unlike casual researchers, this group of buyers has a specific product in mind and wants to find the best place to buy it from or the best deal they can get.
Their buying motivations can be different, they may:
- be looking for the cheapest retailer
- seek a shop they know they can trust
- need validation of their buying need
These buyers usually know quite a lot about the product already and their buying decision will be based more on how the shop sells itself to them.
These people are very easy to spot among your website visitors. They have got there searching for a specific product, rather than through a generic term.
A Perfect Product Description
With that knowledge we can now proceed to discussing some of the best ways to create a product description that will cater for both groups.
1. Outline the Features in the Content
One of the most natural things we tend to do with any kind of descriptions is to create a list of benefits and features.
In a way, it makes perfect sense to do so.
Lists are easy to skim through and allow for even complex information to be absorbed easily.
However, the downside of using lists is that they force the reader to do all the work. By doing so, you rely on your potential buyers skills to decipher the message you want to convey and decide for themselves if this answers their needs.
I find that a much better solution is to state the most important benefits and facts within the content.
And when it comes to lists…
2. Use Lists to Back Up Your Claims
Once you have your content ready, back up all your claims with lists. This is the time to restate those benefits and features again. However, at this stage your buyers have already heard your sales pitch and are ready to review the information.
3. Offer Extra Information
This is especially important when it comes to casual researchers. Additional and highly useful information about the product can really works wonders.
List typical uses for the product. It might sound silly to do so but in fact you’d be surprised how often users don’t realize what the product can be used for.
Provide installation or assembly instructions. It may only be an overview but it will give the buyer a feeling of whether they will be able to do it themselves.
State how easy or difficult it is to use the product or what additional tools or resources the buyer will need (it is also a great opportunity for an upsell).
4. Include Information About Your Support, Returns etc.
This is especially useful for specific product buyers. Since they know about the product already, your main task is to convince them that your store is the best place to buy an item from.
Most shops presents this information on dedicated pages. However, from my experience having a phone number, live chat, and even a mention of elements such as support and returns info can dramatically increase your conversion rate.
But you don’t have to stuff the copy with all this information. Include it at the end for instance.
I use a small graphical banner at the bottom of every product description in my store to emphasize the pre and post sales support we provide.
5. Sprinkle Your Long Tail Keywords In The Copy
Of course, the secondary aspect of a product description is that you want it to rank well in search engines. And, it might be quite tempting to just stuff your page with the keyword you want to optimize the page for.
Well, it’s not the best way to do this anymore.
These days search engines are quite privy to such activities. They can spot and penalize sites doing so very quickly.
In order to optimize the page, sprinkle your long tail keywords on the page. Don’t use a full keyword but separate it across a number of sentences or a paragraph.
Search engines will still recognize it but your copy will sound more natural this way and there is no way that you could be accused of any manipulation or keyword stuffing.
The main goal of a description is to convince someone to make the purchase. However, in many cases this can only be achieved my making your description standing out amongst those of your peers.
Those few tips above should greatly help you with achieving this.
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