Have you ever bought a piece of clothing online just because it looked good? Or did you purchase that television hanging in your living room only to experience great aesthetic pleasure?
Let’s hope not!
There are several things one needs to take into account to be able to make a smart purchase decision.
Not quite convinced yet? Let us look at another scenario.
What if you are sitting in a high-end French restaurant, gawking at the cutlery and waiting for someone to hand you a menu, only to find out an exquisite combination of words such as - 'Confit de Canard.” You can probably call the waiter and ask him to explain the dishes which pique your interest, but would that be as seamless as you might have expected?
Product descriptions are very much like restaurant menus. You need product descriptions that explain listed products in and out, including basic elements like what is it, what makes it different, what does it have for you, and why you may like it. Also personified as online salesmen, product descriptions ensure you make the right decision by providing you as much information as you need.
According to a 2017 study by Salsify, called ‘Cracking the Consumer Code', nearly 88 per cent of people said that product descriptions play a crucial role in their purchase decisions. Close to 94 percent of shoppers either abandon a website or give up when fail to find the necessary information on the products, as they are unable to arrive at a decision.
Now that we have established the importance of product descriptions let's move on to how you should be writing product descriptions for guaranteed conversions!
1. Understand your buyers
Good product descriptions always talk directly to the ones who are likely to buy.
Depending upon the product you sell, the structure and the length of the description can vary, but the final motive is to always educate the buyers and let them have a reason to move to the next step. And unless you figure out who your potential buyers are and what type of information they demand, you cannot create good product descriptions.
Take a look at how Singh Styled Store describes their turbans:
Source: Singh Styled Store
The information is provided under various elements – The Turban, Fabric & Measurement (does not mean you have to do the same, but you can draw parallels).
As they call themselves,
The description sure does catch an eye by pointing out the substance value of a dastar or pagg for a complete Sikh Gentleman’s attire. By associating turbans with courage, spirituality, honour and self-respect, we could define their buyer persona as 'Sikh gentlemen who have an affinity with turbans and also like to keep sharp appearance with trendy colours to bind their whole outfit together.'
2. Bring out the product benefits with each feature
“What’s in it for me?” – This is the first thought to cross your buyers mind.
You can talk about the features all you want, but your buyers are more interested in understanding how practical your product is and how is it going to make their lives slightly better, if not lot (unless it’s a MacBook, which basically needs no introductions).
Take this example of a natural coconut bowl from Narla – an e-commerce platform, using local produce and working with farmers to provide natural and healthy solutions:
From the description, you can easily gather that the bowl is:
- Reusable, durable and easy to clean
- No artificial additives – healthy to use
The description could have probably been just fine with the first paragraph alone, but adding the benefits along with features ensures the extra brownie points.
And who wouldn’t want that!
3. Pick your words wisely with SEO copywriting
If you have come this far along in the article, then chances are you either know what SEO is or at least have heard or read about it in passing. In that case, this should not be a surprise. But, if this sounds alien to you, then you might want to take a quick detour and learn about SEO.
People often claim to have done almost everything mentioned in this article so far, but still not getting any concrete results. What are they missing? SEO techniques! Using necessary/targeted keywords is an absolute key to optimise your content for search engines. Studies also suggest that using bullet points to highlight features and benefits while writing product descriptions can significantly improve search engine rankings.
A classic example of this would be Amazon:
Each feature/benefit is highlighted in bullet points and enhancing the search rankings. Go ahead and search for Bose Soundlink Revolve and see the results for yourself.
4. Write scannable content for the time-sensitive reader
This is the age of multitasking. Your buyer might be on the way to work or having lunch at the table or just getting stood up at a restaurant. Even though there is no ideal time to browse and shop, but there are plenty of expectations with the way you provide information. Writing concise descriptions and using bullet points yet again is considered one of the best ways to skim through the product description quickly.
Here is a good example from Raw Pressery:
Source: Raw Pressery
Above the fold, there is just an image with the price and a “View All Products” option. But, as you scroll down below the fold, you will find this:
If you are not already familiar with Raw Pressery – it provides cold-pressed juice for health-conscious people who like to keep an eye on their calories through the day. Here, Raw Pressery displays an efficient calorie break up which is exactly what their potential buyers would look for while buying any food item online.
5. Persuade them with multimedia
What is the first thing that you notice in a product?
It’s the “product” of course! That oh-so-fascinating image is what made you click and proceed to the specifications. But what could be more engaging than a static image? A video, perhaps. We are more likely to get drawn to content with images and videos. There is so much one can do with product descriptions, then why should you restrict it to only images?
Lulu & Sky is one of the many fashion e-commerce websites making optimum use of videos to best demonstrate their clothing items to the shoppers.
Here is an example:
Source: Lulu & Sky
When everything is taken into consideration, don’t forget that a “good product description” is supposed to provide enough information to the shoppers, in whatever form you see fit, and enable them to make a smart purchase. If you think an image alone does the job for a plain black t-shirt, then be it. Sometimes you can just show and not tell. As long as it serves the purpose, it is all good!
In the fullness of time, if you put the right effort and energy into it, your product descriptions can show pretty solid results. Just don’t forget to start with defining your buyer persona. If you figure out who you are talking to, finding out what they want and how they want it is not very difficult.
Highlighting the benefits right up top against each feature will also add brownie points to your description and help the shoppers in the right direction. But, be mindful of SEO as well and draft your copy keeping all the important aspects in mind so that your buyers can get the most accurate results with ease.
And at last, use a variety of media and write content that can be skimmed on the go. What are your top techniques to write engaging product descriptions?