product-description-that-sells-how-to-write-it

Product description that sells — how to write it?

11.03.2019 / / E-Commerce

Professional, competent staff is a real treasure in a stationery shop. A great salesman presents the entire assortment to a potential customer without any problem, talks about individual products and helps to make the best choice. All in order to make a customer leave the shop satisfied, willing to visit it again and maybe even recommend it to friends.

Unfortunately, in online shops, there is no specially trained staff, ready to provide professional information at any time, waiting for consumers. You can use tools like livechat , but let’s not fool ourselves — few companies can afford to handle them around the clock.

Fortunately, you can do without it. All you need to do is deliver complete and attractive product information. A good product description is a part of it. Today, we’ll talk about how to create it.

Why is it worth it

Before we start deliberating about what a product description should be, we’ll briefly tell ourselves why it’s worth bothering with it at all.

  • First of all, more than 87% of online shoppers mention a valuable product description as an important purchasing factor.

  • Secondly, as much as 50% of buyers returned products due to a lack of consistency with the product description.

  • Thirdly, as many as 98% of customers resigned from their purchase due to incomplete or incorrect product information (Source)

These three numbers should give you the idea of how important a good product description is.

But what does “good” actually mean?

First of all: don’t copy from a manufacturer

The product description should really be created, not copied. This is the most important rule. Until recently, dialogues between online shop builders and customers looked more or less like this:

Agency: Instead of product descriptions we’ll place Lorem Ipsum until we get the complete text from you. The customer: But there is no need for it! Please copy the manufacturer’s description.

Everyone or almost everyone copied it. The Internet was full of identical descriptions of the same products. Fortunately, those times are over. We can thank Google for that, especially one of its key algorithms — Panda.

google algorithm panda

Panda’s task is to lower the position in search results for websites:

  • publishing other people’s content,
  • who commits plagiarism,
  • duplicating content,
  • with low-quality content,
  • with little content.

Even if a manufacturer has agreed to use his descriptions, Google can punish you for this. A much better solution is to create an original description of each new product in your shop. This is a time-consuming task, but in the long term it will bring much more benefits and is less risky than the Copy-Paste method.

Think about for whom you write

If something is for everyone, it’s for no one.

Personalization in e-Commerce is still doing good. Entrepreneurs personalize practically everything:

  • product recommendations,
  • promotions,
  • newsletters,
  • communication on the website and in social media
  • etc.

If you have already created personas representing your ideal customers, they will be a great way to write personalized (with them in mind) product descriptions. If not: here you can catch up.

Knowing who will read your descriptions will not only allow you to choose the right style of expression and understandable vocabulary. You will also better understand what they are driven by when making a purchase, what questions they have about the product and what makes them click “Buy Now”.

Example

Look at these two product descriptions:

funny product descriptionSource: johnscrazysocks.com

professional product descriptionSource: www.hugoboss.com

Both descriptions refer to male socks, but they differ significantly. That’s not a surprise — they are addressed to two different target groups. Fans of colorful socks with funny patterns will certainly appreciate the witty description of Haute Dog Socks, and those looking for classic dark socks for a suit will appreciate the professional design of Hugo Boss socks.

A good understanding of a customer, what he is looking for and his expectations from a product are a powerful weapon in the fight for his sympathy.

Give detailed specifications and instructions

product description

When it comes to online shopping, the main problem from a customer’s point of view is the inability to physically interact with the product.

Take for example footwear. When buying shoes online, you cannot take them in your hand to feel the material they are made of, check closely the precision of their construction, and finally — try them on. Detailed pictures, taken from different angles, showing the true color of a product and close-ups of important details (e.g. precisely finished seams), will be helpful when it comes to making a purchase decision. But that’s not all! A comprehensive description is also important.

A product description should answer these questions:

  • What material is a product made of?
  • What sort of components is it made of? (in the case of e.g. cosmetics)
  • What is the size?
  • What is it for?
  • For whom is it designed?
  • How does it work?
  • Is the product covered by the warranty? Under what conditions?
  • etc.

Of course, different things will be important for different products. When constructing a detailed product description, think first and foremost about what your customer wants to know.

Example

This approach is well illustrated by the descriptions in the Zooplus online pet shop, which has taken care to provide answers to all possible questions that a customer may have when making a purchase decision. Owners of pets will find detailed information about color, design, purpose, weight and even dimensions of individual parts of the ordered product.

product description detailed informationSource: Zooplus.co.uk

It was also a good idea to include instruction in the product description. This will help those who tend to lose the original.

instruction included in product cardSource: Zooplus.co.uk

Write in a simple and understandable way

You already know why you should create a unique description and what it should contain. You can already sit down and write. Let’s start with the title:

„ASUS A540YA-XO683T 15,6″ AMD E1-7010…”

Sounds promising, right? For a fan of computers — certainly! Worse with a layman who is just looking for a new laptop.

Giving a product specification is a great introduction to the description that sells. The keyword here is ‘an introduction’. Let’s go back to the example. When you’re buying a new laptop, the specification is, of course, important, but computer hardware is not only purchased by specialists. If you address your description only to veterans, you lose a lot of less knowledgeable customers. This is a big mistake.

In addition to the parameters that are attractive from the point of view of experts, present also other advantages of the product:

  • For a salesman running to a meeting, the advantage of a laptop can be that it is very light and handy,
  • gamers will be attracted by a powerful graphics card,
  • a graphic designer will love the matte screen, making it easier to work in full light,
  • and for the student it will attractive may be included MS Office package.

Look at how Lenovo did it:

product description lenovoSource: Lenovo.com

Do you now understand what I am talking about?

Here again, the personalization of the offer is important. When you create a description, focus on a product’s features that are most important for your target group, but also try to list its other advantages — you never know what will ultimately turn out to be an incentive for someone to buy.

Customize your product description to suit your distribution channel

distribution channels

Year after year, the number of channels where we can sell our products online is growing. Without too much thought given, we can name at least a few:

  • our own online shops,
  • landing pages,
  • sales platforms (Allegro, Amazon, eBay, etc.),
  • price comparison engines,
  • Google Shopping,
  • Marketplace by Facebook,
  • Shopping on Instagram
  • etc.

Each sales channel has its own rules. Some of them have text fields that only contain a limited amount of content, others require it in a specific format (e.g. title, subtitle and two lines of description), while others offer a possibility to really show off.

Many companies cope with it by having one longer description on the website and shortening it based on the channel requirements. This is some sort of a solution, but it’s still far from perfect. Strong slimming of the content to fit in a required maximum of characters, sometimes leads to omitting important details. Anyone who has tried at least once to turn a comprehensive post-article from LinkedIn into 280 characters allowed on Twitter knows this.

Example

Let’s take a look at these two product descriptions in Google Shopping:

bad product description in Google Shopping

You can immediately see that the first one has not been optimized for the distribution channel. Although the author has made an effort to create the encouraging description, a client may not be able to appreciate it, as the shortened to the allowed maximum text breaks in the middle of the sentence.

good product description in Google Shopping

The second description is matched to the channel (shorter) and therefore wins — the potential customer can see all information that the seller wanted to show him.

How to combine all this into a single whole? Meet PIM

Get to know your customers, create their personas, adapt vocabulary to them, give full product specification, speak the language of benefits — sounds like a lot of effort for a description itself, right? And this is only the tip of the iceberg, which is a complete product information. Add to that:

  • photos,
  • films,
  • video tutorials,
  • reviews,
  • instructions
  • etc.

The PIM system, which is used to manage product information, will help to organize all of this. PIM allows you to quickly and easily collect and distribute complete and accurate product information, tailored to requirements of different regions, channels, and languages and provides customers with exactly the data they need to decide to buy.

Summary

The investment of time and energy in creating good product descriptions definitely pays off.

It depends on their completeness whether a visitor will find important information, the style of language they are written in will help him decide whether a product is for him, and a clear indication of the benefits will encourage to click on “Buy now”.

To sum it up, product descriptions on the Internet are a bit like salespeople in the company — the more time and resources you devote to their development, the better they will sell.