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Product descrip­ti­ons: how to get them right

Product descriptions are important. Really important. They tend to get overlooked in the quest for the perfect product page — the focus is usually on having amazing product images and a user friendly interface. Yeah, those are key cogs in the machine, but a product description can make or break a sale. 

Think about the big brands you've bought from in the past. Better yet, head to their ecommerce stores and do a little primary research. You'll see a product description for each product that both describes the product and builds their brand. It's not always the same though. Layout, content, voice, etc; all different, varying from brand to brand to brand. But they all do it. It's important to have a product description to accompany each item you sell to let potential customers know exactly what’s on offer, to encourage them to purchase, and to build your brand whilst doing so.

Different people respond to different stimuli. There are many styles of product description, and an equally broad range of effects on customer decisions, but there are a few general rules to keep in mind when writing your product des­crip­ti­ons.

Writing style
Particularly in the field of fashion and accessories, a brand image is extremely important. Your writing style should suit what you’re trying to project. Use language that will evoke the senses, stir memories, and make the description a visceral experience for the reader. Use grammar and syntax that your intended market will understand and engage with. Create a world, and then invite your customers into it. The writing style of your description can do as much to develop your brand as the actual branding you use. And it costs you nothing but the time it takes to create great copy. 
Length of description
There are long descriptions and short ones, walls of text and blank spaces. Length of description is a tricky one to get right because you want to give as much information as possible, but how much is too much? If you're unsure, keep it simple.­ Be snappy and succinct, but don’t be too short (the customer wants to be drawn in). It’s a good strategy to get the general stuff in first, and then get a little snappier towards the end when you're giving out the practical information.
Content of the copy
Think about what you want to say. Don't just type. The famous theory states that a monkey hitting keys at random on a typewriter for an infinite amount of time will almost surely type a given text, such as the complete works of William Shakespeare, but you're not a monkey, you don't have infinte time, and you don't have infinite space! Your description should be creative, but factual. There should be a reason for everything you include (and as long as that description is justified for your brand, that's all that matters). There are plenty of ways to do this but, again, if you're unsure then keep it simple. Bulk your factual information together so your customer knows what it is and where to find it. And keep it uniform across all products.
Objective feedback
Ask someone you trust to read your descrip­ti­ons for you. Have them be totally honest and judge the description as if it were any other found online. It’s possible to be too close to your own work to be objective, and what sounds great to you might actually be terrible in the eyes of a customer. Take a step back, throw some fresh eyes at the copy, and then listen to thier feedback. You can choose to take it on board or ignore it, of course, but you'll find it helpful either way.

Examples

In true Blue Peter style: here are some we made earlier! They're just basic des­crip­ti­ons, one way of writing product descriptions that may or may not suit the brand voice you're hoping to create. The ideas are sound though. They all use the same format and the same voice. They all have a tiny bit of humor so that, even though they're products for children, the adults can still have some fun. The brand building comes first, followed by the factual product information that parents would likely want to know. 

bear king alien fox

The Bear King is contented. Why wouldn't he be? His Animal Kingdom is full of love and happiness, his animal friends have everything they could ever want or need, and his Animal King crown sits atop his head in majestic splendour without toppling off. As long as he holds his head just right.

Product details

  • 100% combed organic cotton

  • Interlock 5.9oz/ 200g

  • Made in the UK with eco-friendly inks

  • Gender neutral colour

Alien is happy. Alien found a home in the Bear King's Kingdom, where she's respected as the King's Royal Advisor. She's used her wealth of wisdom and experience to help the Animal Kingdom prosper, though Alien originally only travelled to the Kingdom because the animals looked tasty. But she won't tell them that. 

Product details

  • 100% Combed Organic Cotton
  • Interlock 5.9oz/ 200g
  • Made in the UK with eco-friendly inks
  • Gender neutral colour

Fox is cunning. He knew that all the best butlers have facial hair, so he grew a moustache; a glorious moustache that's now the envy of every fox in the Kingdom. The Bear King even gave him a raise! Because such facial hair must surely mean that Fox is the best butler in the Animal Kingdom, and it'd do well keep him working in the King's palace.

Product details

  • 100% Combed Organic Cotton
  • Interlock 5.9oz/ 200g
  • Made in the UK with eco-friendly inks
  • Gender neutral colour

Did you know you can now import product descriptions along with other details if you're integrated?

Along with your product title, resale price, product image, and colour and size variants, your product description can now be imported to your integrated store. That means everything can be handled through Ink­thre­adab­le without having to head to your store to edit the details you're not happy with! Employ the techniques above, fill in the description box, and hit the import button. You'll see your description appear on your product page beside the other relevant information that's been imported with it! 

Get started with integrating your store with Inkthre­adab­le today!

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