Last Updated 1 month by Emily Standley-Allard
If you own an e-commerce business, you need to write product descriptions that sell in 2023. Your product pages are easily the most important content on your website. They’re the pages that earn your revenue, and if you can manage to draw organic search engine traffic to your product pages, you have a high likelihood of doing well. Simply drawing traffic to your product pages, however, isn’t enough. Once a user reaches one of your product pages, your description text needs to seal the deal.
In every e-commerce niche, the most common mistake that new business owners make is copying their product descriptions from other websites. That’s a terrible strategy for two reasons.
The first reason is that, if you didn’t write that text, you don’t own it. At any point, the person who owns the copyright for that text could petition Google to remove your page from its search index.
In truth, though, there’s a pretty good chance that Google won’t bother to index your product pages at all if you’re copying your description text from other sources.
What’s the point of indexing a page that brings nothing new to the table and doesn’t provide value that isn’t already available elsewhere?
If you really want to make money in e-commerce, your product pages have to be good enough to earn high search rankings, and your text descriptions need to be good enough to convert casual visitors into paying customers.
In other words, you need product descriptions that sell if you want to play with the big boys.
Here’s how to write product descriptions that sell!
Word Count Matters – to a Point
If you’ve read about search engine optimization (SEO) online, you’ve probably seen a lot of different opinions about the value of word count as it relates to a page’s ranking on Google.
As you might imagine, a page with a higher word count often has a better chance of earning a high ranking.
Having more words on a page, after all, means that Google has more keywords to index. The greater the variety of keywords on a page, the more search terms that page can potentially rank for.
Google’s ranking algorithm, however, is very good at recognizing fluff.
There’s no point in adding text to a page if that text isn’t informative and helpful, so if you’ve said everything you possibly can about a product, there’s no reason to add more words to your description.
If you want to get a better idea of how long your product descriptions should be, look at the competitors who already ranking well for the search terms that are relevant for your business.
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Answer the Questions Prospective Customers Are Likely to Have
A good product description should answer all of the questions that a prospective customer is likely to have about that product.
You should describe why the product is perfect for the person viewing it, and if the product isn’t perfect, you should offer some alternative options.
If you have a large e-commerce store, you may occasionally experience writer’s block when attempting to write descriptions for your products. There’s a fairly simple formula, though, to writing a product description that sells.
If you hit all of these points, you’ll have a successful product description that’s highly likely to earn a good ranking on Google.
- What is this product?
- What does this product do?
- How does this product work?
- What problems does this product solve?
- Why should someone consider buying this product?
- How does this product compare to similar products on your website or on your competitors’ websites?
- How can owners of this product have the best possible experience with it?
- What warranty or guarantee do you offer to ease any uncertainties about buying this product?
Whenever you’re trying to write a product description and aren’t sure what to write, simply refer to the list above. If your description addresses every item on the list, you’ll never have to worry about word counts.
Give the Product Page a Compelling Meta Title and Meta Description
Writing a product description that sells isn’t just a matter of writing description text that ranks well on Google and turns browsers into buyers.
You also need to give each product page a unique and compelling meta title and meta description. A page’s metadata – particularly its meta title – factors somewhat into its ranking on Google.
The metadata may also be displayed when the page appears on Google’s search results pages, so it should be compelling enough to encourage people to click through to your site.
When writing the meta title for a product page, make sure that it includes your company’s name and the name of the product.
If you have any remaining room after adding those two elements, add any additional keyword phrases for which you would like the page to rank.
The meta description should include the page’s primary keyword phrase and any additional information that might encourage people to click.
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Use Your Own Product Photography if Possible
Standing out from your competitors and creating product pages that convert isn’t just a matter of writing better description text; it’s also important that you give customers a good look at the products they’re buying.
Don’t rely solely on stock photos from product manufacturers if you can help it; take the time to stage your own professional photos.
With that being said stock images have come a long way and there are plenty of professional and free stock photo sites out there today you can use if your budget is tight. Here’s a post with 27 free stock photo websites:
The 27 Best FREE Stock Photo Images for Your Business
Don’t forget that, when you upload a product image to your site, that’s yet another opportunity to improve the SEO of your product page.
Make sure that every image has a file name and alt text containing the name of the product or another relevant keyword phrase.
There’s no limit to how you can create stunning images today with the power of AI and software like Colorcinch that creates cartoon images and more.
Conduct A/B Tests to Maximize Conversions
The final aspect of writing product descriptions that sell is a willingness to continually tweak, optimize and measure the results.
Many website content management systems have the ability to test different variations of a page and tell you which one is better at accomplishing its goal – in this case, clicking the “Add to Cart” button.
If you think of a slightly different way of describing one of your products, don’t guess – set up an A/B test of the page variations and find out which version resonates more with your customers.
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I hope this post helped give you some ideas of how to write product descriptions that sell your products easier!
Follow me for the best tips on growing your business and your presence online! And feel to free reach out to me with any questions or a custom consultation!
Gordon Imrie says
Hello Ms Standley—
I assume you are the same lady who posted a terrific review of the film “wildcat” at rotten tomatoes a month ago. My wife and I just saw it tonight and we’re as moved by it as were you.
I’m writing you out of the blue because I have funded half of a documentary that in someways parallels what we saw in wildcat. It occurred to me that, while we seek distribution for the finished film, we might benefit from feedback from someone who has seen a similar film with similar wrenching emotions.
The film I would ask you to see has no gratuitous violence. But it is a war documentary, also about a young man with PTSD after Afghanistan. It was funded half by Kickstarter and the rest by me. It is meant to benefit veterans, and certainly pertains to the question of suicide.
I am a biographer by trade, and from your writing skill (read some blogs) can tell with certainty that you will not be wasting your time with what I am suggesting. I wouldn’t watch it before bedtime, however. It’s not explicitly antiwar, but deals with the question of moral injury, and full accounting for the cost of war.
There are three parts to the package below, and when you get to the full film, the best way to see it is on a flat screen television using “mirroring” from the phone link. Second-best is on a computer monitor. Telephone… Not advised.
You can check my credentials on Facebook, Google, etc. http://www.PrivateBiogrspher.com
Emily Standley-Allard says
Hello Mr. Imrie,
Thank you for your message. I’m more than happy to watch and review Lucky Milo. I have viewed the trailer and it looks extremely well done.
On a personal level this subject touches my heart deeply. My oldest son at the age of 18, was a part of the 160th SOAR, went on several tours to Afghanistan and other nations and let’s just say that his experiences there were harrowing (he doesn’t speak about them but I’m aware) and his outcome after leaving the Army and returning to the states has been more than a struggle to deal with living a ‘normal life’ as a civilian. He suffers from PTSD, extreme depression and other ailments. Not to the extent that Milo did but nonetheless it’s affected his life in ways no one other than other veterans, and families of those affected by PTSD could ever imagine. I hope that this film you’ve helped sponsor, and Wildcat and others truly opens the eyes and minds of those accountable for the high price of war on our young men and women and brings about serious change. It is too high of a price for our youth to pay. I understand we must defend ourselves and our country against certain evil entities but in this day and age of technology and other advancements, one would think and hope that we could come up with some other viable options that do not completely devastate the lives of the promising 1% of our young soldiers who have sacrificed everything so the rest of us can ‘have our freedoms.’
Thank you for writing to me. I appreciate the time you took. I’ll be happy to share Lucky Milo on my social pages as well to bring about awareness.
Emily Standley-Allard says
P.S. Just wanted to mention on a technical note, on your Private Biographer page the link to your bio: http://www.itssointeresting.com isn’t working. It also helps to have your Main URL protected with an SSL certificate so notifies viewers that it is a secure (rather than non-secure site. Your webhost provider can easily set one up 🙂
Thank you again for reaching out to me and best of luck with the film!