9 Tips for Writing E-commerce Product Descriptions that Sell
Is it possible to persuade a user to buy a product by words alone? Yes, indeed it is if you write an effective description that sells and not just gives the basic information about the product. Words have the power to turn even the most ordinary product into a must-have. However, writing product descriptions that sell is not easy. There are many aspects that you should take into consideration, and all of them will affect the outcome of your campaign.
What is the most frequent mistake while writing product descriptions?
While writing product descriptions, a writer frequently just describes the product in general terms. You will find dozens of descriptions that include such words as ‘the best on the market’, ‘cutting-edge technology’, ‘top-notch’, ‘revolutionary approach’, ‘the best solution’ etc etc. In fact, these words tell nothing about the product so the user doesn’t understand what’s your offer.
For instance, ‘revolutionary approach’ can be used both for new technologies used for cat food and for a flying car. The best solution never reveals real benefits. Top-notch is just top-notch, nothing more. If you want to create a seductive copy, you need to be concrete, clear, and objective. Avoid generic terms.
In this article, we are going to reveal 9 tips to write clear product descriptions that really sells. We don’t promise that it will be easy to follow these tips, but we do promise that if you follow them, the results will pleasantly surprise you.
Step 1. Defining a buyer persona
Defining a buyer persona helps any business to understand who will buy the product or order the service. If you know your buyer persona, you know what’s important to them, what type of content attracts them, and how they read and perceive information that you provide them. Moreover, in-depth understanding of buyer persona will help you find a proper way to develop your product or service, increase sales, and find a proper strategy for retention and acquisition.
Wesley Ayres, in his research in SlideShares, shows how defying target persona affects business:
A buyer persona is a generalized representation of the ideal customer. By knowing the background of this fictional character, it gets easy for you to find a proper message that will catch the attention of the audience. Additionally, it will help to tailor your approach to the needs of your audience.
For example, HotTopic’s audiences are geeks and young people who have a passion for unique clothes, pop-culture merchandise, and other interesting products. Therefore, HotTopic doesn’t stick with casual product description while presenting these Holographic Mermaid Combat Boots to their audience and makes their description informative yet interesting and informal.
Step 2. Establish value proposition
How do your products differ from the products of your competition? If you know your selling points, it gets easier to reach out to your users. Customers are not interested in how hard you worked on the product, they need to know the benefits they will enjoy. At this point, we are speaking about creating a value proposition.
Here are 4 popular tactics that will help you create a value proposition that favors your business:
Lush is well-known not only for their cosmetic products but for appealing descriptions as well. Their Heart of Enlightened Expectation is a part of Valentine’s Day collection – so naturally, the description doesn’t only describe the benefits of the product but hints the special occasion it was released for.
Step 3. Mind your voice
The tone of voice is equally important while communicating with your audience. It’s about how you talk to your readers with your product descriptions. Of course, it takes time to find your voice, but you need to do that before you write product descriptions. If you ignore this point, the chances are that your description will be either too boring or absolutely inappropriate for your audience.
So how can you talk to the audience? Your style may be casual, witty or formal. Here, everything depends on your audience and the product or service that you offer. Of course, if your audience is millennials, the formal style will not be the best choice (unless it’s sarcastic and rebellious).
Just compare these two product descriptions! Though the products are very similar, the tone of the descriptions is impressively different – because the shops selling them also differ in their image and in their relationships with the customers.
ThinkGeek describes their Shark Plush Slippers for Grown Ups like that:
While Zappos offers the following description of their Stride Rite Lighted Mouth Shark:
Step 4. Avoid one-fit-all approach
Your products are not for everyone. They are for certain users who have certain demands. In the product descriptions, you need to show whether the goods meet these demands otherwise the client won’t be satisfied with the description.
We have already mentioned that you need to avoid generic terms. But how do you do that? It’s pretty easy when you know your product’s benefits and your competitive advantage. When you describe the product, you need to show your clients how they will benefit from using it. It’s not enough to tell ‘buy something because it’s great’, but you need to tell ‘buy something because you will look more stylish’ or ‘buy something, because you will run faster, and that’s just what you need’.
For example, check how Nike describes each good they sell. Each description is clear, short, and you understand why you should buy it:
Step 5. Use reader’s imagination
An average internet user reads dozens of product descriptions per day. Your main goal is to make people remember you. But if you use the same words like thousands of other companies do, you have zero chances to get noticed.
First, forget about words that are used in all descriptions: the best, top-notch, perfect, great, and beautiful. You should tell WHY your product or good is great, but not to tell that it’s just good for you.
Secondly, never use ‘solution’. Solution tells nothing to your readers. If you want to tell how you solve their problems – just explain that!
Third, check the experience of well-known companies that have already changed their approach to product descriptions.
When we’re talking about the descriptions that do boost the readers’ imagination, we cannot help but use Lush once again as an example. The description of their Rocket Science bath bomb does this incredibly, appealing to your senses. Of course, such approach works the best with things like food and cosmetic products.
Step 6. Tell stories
People are no longer interested in boring research-style product descriptions. They want to read stories, as they help to understand the mission and the value of the company better. They do not want to see numbers in your product description as this is not an annual report. They want to know how your product helped people or why you have decided to run a certain company.
Holger Schulze states that storytelling is the most effective content type. In his research, he also defined other aspects that influence the quality of any post or article.
Just check how Lego uses storytelling to describe their products:
Step 7. Fewer words – better effect
When you write product descriptions for e-commerce products, you should always remember that no one will read a 500-word text. Here, you need to get as short as possible Your description should never exceed 100 words, and in case you have something more to tell, you need to create a landing page for a product where you will describe all the benefits in detail.
For many marketers, it’s too difficult to write short texts, as they think that they may miss some information. Short texts might miss out on some points, therefore you need to be sure that you have defined one or two killing features that you will use in your description.
It always better to write about one mind-blowing feature than about 10 features that all competitors have.
Step 8. Back your words with proof
Even if you really have the best product in the world, but it’s still new on the market, the chances are that people won’t trust you. To build trust and to show that people really enjoy working with you, it will be nice to add some social proof of your words. For instance, you may add customer feedbacks.
Here, the main idea is to use a real feedback from a real customer. Moreover, you need to add a link to his personal profile (previously, you need to discuss the details of this agreement with the person you ask to leave a feedback).
Let’s look at the previous description of a The Piggy Bean Bag by Made:
Though now the description is a bit different, they still try using proof to add more value to their products:
Step 9. Always proofread
The product descriptions should be polished and perfect. Mistakes will ruin everything that you have already done to enter the market successfully. Even if you have just a few words to use, it will always be better to check them twice. You will pay $100 for the editing and proofreading services and you’ll be sure that your clients and partners won’t be frustrated by some mistakes that might appear in your texts.
If you are not sure that you can create a compelling copy on your own, don’t hesitate to work with copywriters and marketers who will help you find proper words to describe your goods and services.
Witching Bath Co. is a great example of proper proofreading. Just look at their description of Natural Honey Facial Cleansing Bar – not only it is appealing, but also properly written as well.
In this article, you found 9 ideas and steps how to create e-commerce product descriptions that will help you sell any good. If you stick to these ideas, you’ll find it easy to write a perfect copy that will help you turn your business into a success. Perhaps, you’ll find out your own strategies for writing, and we’ll be happy if you share some ideas with us!
This is a guest post by Kevin Nelson who frequently writes on EliteEssayWriters.