Content Marketing

5 Steps to a Killing Product Description

[Picture: unsplash.com copyright: Florian Klauer]

Why are product descriptions so important? And why should you spend your precious time on copywriting for your products?

Here’s why: product pages will be your number one traffic driver for your website. But it’s not enough to lead the customer to your website. The product page also needs to contain information of real value in order for the customer to make a purchase decision. First of all, you need a product description that will be found on Google. This will bring highly interested users to your website. And secondly, you need your killer description to convince the user to click the ‘buy now’ button. So far so good.

Now that we all agree that product descriptions are crucial – how do you optimize them?

Here are 5 steps to improve the quality of your descriptions:

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1. Identify the products with the highest potential

Time management is always a big part of our success. If you are a small team or if you have hundreds of products on your website, you might need to focus on the most important ones first. In order to find out which ones are the high potentials for you, do the following:

– Look at your sales and identify the products that bring you the highest revenue .

– Also check for the products that are sold the most often. They might bring customers to your site, who you can cross- or upsell products to.

– Select your top-sellers. Your most sold products might enable cross- or upselling.

– Check your Google Analytics statistics to find out which product pages bring the most traffic to your site.

Now you have identified the low hanging fruits. But how to start?

2. Define the target group for your product

You might have already defined target groups and then buyer personas for your business, or even better, for the products you want to optimize your descriptions for. If not, don’t lose any time to get on this task. This will not only help you for your descriptions, but for all marketing campaigns. A buyer persona gives your target group a face with interests and character trades. You will see how much easier it is to write for one special person instead of the whole world. And you know in detail what your target group is looking for.

Insider’s tip: If you have never done this, there are great resources available for free that guide you through the process. Try this article on hubspot for example:

How to Create Detailed Buyer Personas for Your Business

3. Translate features into user benefits

Most of the time, product geeks or product managers think in features and technical details of their products. You can even make a list of the most important features and details. But the most important step is to put yourself in the user’s shoes and translate those features into real life benefits for the user. Think about the pains that users might have that your product can relieve. There might also be gains that your product creates for the customers.

One way to approach this task is by using the value proposition canvas. Strategyzer has some really helpful resources with short videos and step-by-step guides: Strategyzer Value Proposition Canvas. Furthermore, it is well worth thinking about constraints that your users might prevent from buying your products (read more about the so-called buyers guilt in the MOZ article by Martina Mercer).

Insider’s tip: Product reviews might be one of the fastest ways to find pains and gains that users might have. You can find really helpful reviews for example on Amazon about nearly every product. Users write what is important for them and what the product might do good or on what the product fails.

4. Find the keywords that users search for

One really important part of great product descriptions is the SEO aspect of the description. To make the best use of product pages as traffic drivers to your website they need to be found on Google. But Google has become more and more intelligent when it comes to copy. Now the goal is to write the perfect product description for the user and not the search engine anymore. So be very careful about the use of keywords. Use the words that your target users understand and search for. Don’t overload your texts with keywords, but write in a natural way.

How to find the correct keywords and phrases to use?

You might already have come across the most important ones during your target group research and by looking at product reviews on Amazon or other big eCommerce sites. There are also tools dedicated to just this. One very helpful tool is the Google keyword planner , which can be used within the Google adwords account. It helps you by finding related keywords and by giving you the search volumes of those keywords. That way you can identify the most important keyword that you should focus on for every product.

Another way to spot the relevant keywords is to use tools like SEMrush or ahrefs.com to analyse competitor pages . Both tools usually offer free trial periods. You can basically insert competitors’ product pages into the tool to find the keywords those pages rank for. These tools can even show you the search volume for the keywords in the Google search.

Insider’s tip: Check the list of words to avoid in product descriptions in the MOZ article by Martina Mercer.

5. Avoid duplicate content

Another important part of SEO is to avoid using duplicate content. Google does not want to see matching descriptions (or copy in general) on different pages. This means you should not have the exact same product description like competitor pages. It might sometimes be the case that brands offer finished copy for products that you sell. The problem is that also other eCommerce pages will use the same texts that you use. To avoid this, you can use a tool called Copyscape . It directly shows you sites with duplicate content. It is definitely worth to invest time to rewrite the texts in order to have unique product descriptions.

Last but not least: Check and optimize

Nobody has ever written the perfect product description on the first try. So maybe even the most important part is the continuous optimization of descriptions. To see if you have moved up in the rankings, use the SEO tools listed above to track the search rankings of your keywords. In general, try to improve your descriptions and check for new keyword opportunities as often as your time allows it. New product trends and user needs occur faster than you might think 😉

Happy writing!

About the author

nforster

nforster

Currently in the Digital Business Strategy Master program at GEM, graduated from LMU Munich in Business Administration.

Digital Marketing Manager @ Dynafit, a mountain sports company.