A product description is the most important copy on your e-commerce website.
Not only does it help to bring in traffic and differentiate you from your competitors on Google but it can also persuade someone to buy your product, helping to increase your conversion rates.
Because of this, it is essential that you get it right to ensure that your product appears high up on search engine results pages and to give the user the confidence to add it to their basket and checkout.
Whether you are starting from scratch, or re-writing what you have already got online, we have put together these top tips to help you write the perfect product prescription.
In this article, we will look at how to:
|Figure out your buyer personas|
|Optimise your product description layout and length|
|Create language and content|
|Optimise your description for SEO|
|Add a clear call to action|
Figure out your buyer personas
Before you put pen to paper or fingers to keyboard, you should have a clear idea who your target customer is.
What is their gender? How old are they? What do they do as a job? Where do they live? What are their hobbies?
You can use existing data, market trends and customer profiles to identify and create some buyer personas.
Deciding who your ideal customer is and what they are interested in will help you to form not only the tone of your descriptions but your overall brand tone of voice too, which will come in useful for other pieces of web content as well as printed materials and emails.
Your brand tone of voice might be witty and informal, or maybe it is professional and informational.
Use references that are relatable and humour that is suitable for your target audience.
Ensure that your product descriptions are all written in the same tone of voice, even if you have several different copywriters working on them.
This will help to develop your brand tone of voice and will become familiar to your repeat customers, encouraging loyalty.
You may want to put together some brand guidelines or standards which will make it easier for copywriters to work to, especially if you are working with freelancer or agency copywriters who may not be as familiar with your brand as in-house copywriters.
Layout and length
Your descriptions should be easy to read with short sentences. Each sentence should be no longer than 20 words. Avoid lots of clauses separated with commas.
Pull important product features out into bullet point lists and use short paragraphs and headings to break up the copy and to ensure that key points stand out.
There are a number of free readability tools available online which scan and rate your web pages, providing you with tips on how to make them easier to read.
Language and content
Your product description should describe what your product can do for your customer and how owning that product will improve their life. Highlight the unique benefits and features of your product.
Remember that buying persona that we identified earlier? You need to make sure that you let them know how your product will fit their situation and add value to their life, specifically.
After all, there is no use in trying to sell a car to someone who cannot drive is there?!
Ensure that you include the references to the values, goals and lifestyle of your target audience. You want your customer to desire your product and you need to remove any doubts that they might have.
Your product description should be easy for anybody to read and understand. Avoid using the passive voice. Spelling and grammar should be correct so make sure you pass your copy through a spell checker or get another pair of eyes across it before it goes live – it is not always easy to spot your own mistakes!
Avoid using overly promotional sales copy and grand claims, as your description may come across as inauthentic and likely to turn customers off.
Optimise your description for SEO
As well as being informative and persuasive for your customer, your product description should also be optimised for SEO, so that you can appear high on search engine results pages.
SEO is complicated and changes all the time thanks to algorithm updates from Google and changes from your competitors.
However, there are some simple principles that you can follow to set you off on the right track.
Identify your keywords
The first step to good SEO is to determine the keywords that you would like your product to rank for.
Ideally these will be search terms with a high search volume but with low competition from other sites.
If your product is available on other sites, try to find long-tail search terms instead which they may not be optimised for.
It is best to identify one main keyword and focus your efforts on this, as well as a list of supporting related keywords which you can also use within your copy.
Once you have identified your keywords, you should use them naturally throughout your copy and include your main keyword in headings and subheadings.
Avoid keyword stuffing
However, you should avoid over-using them or “keyword stuffing” as it is known. You still want your copy to be engaging to read and Google can penalise content which it thinks is too contrived.
Format your content
As well as this, ensure that your headings are formatted properly.
H1s should only be used for the page title/product name, H2s for main topic dividers and H3s and below as subheadings within each section.
This will help Google’s crawlers to better “understand” your description.
A properly formatted description can also improve your chances of appearing in Google’s featured snippets, which appear in a large space above the other search results, giving you more real estate on the search engine results page.
Add a clear call to action (CTA)
What do you want the user to do now that they have read the product description?
Buy the product of course!
Make sure that the ‘add to basket button’ is clear on your product page and end your description with a short highlight of why the customer should buy your product.
By this point, your customer should be ready to convert.