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6 Tips for Improving Your Product Descriptions

by Justin Palmer - October 17th, 2007

We’ve heard it said that “a picture is worth a thousand words.” However, I’d argue that words can be worth a thousand pictures.

Good product descriptions should both inform and persuade your customers. Below I’ve gathered  some tips for spicing up these powerful selling tools.

  1. List benefits, not features: Have you ever encountered a salesman who rattles off useless specs and features that you either don’t care about or don’t understand? Don’t be guilty of this with your product descriptions. Suppose you sell a wireless phone that offers a wireless headset feature. Rather than boasting about “Bluetooth wireless technology” phrase the feature as a benefit. “Safe, no-wire hands free operation allows you to keep your hands free for more important tasks.” For more suggestions on selling benefits, not features, checkout this post.
  2. Proofread them Thoroughly: There’s nothing more embarrassing than being told by a customer that your product description is erroneous or contains typos. Make sure your descriptions are proof read by someone other than the original copywriter.
  3. Let Customers Describe It: Allow your customers to review your products. The information they provide will be very valuable to customers considering a purchase. Visitors may trust a user generated review even more than your own product descriptions.
  4. Don’t just sell, educate: When you educate your customers about your products, they feel like you are providing additional value for the price they pay. RadioShack does a nice job of this with their Research library.
  5. Use Enticing, Image Oriented Words: Let your customers see, hear, taste, touch, and smell your products through descriptions that create powerful images in their mind. Here’s a great comparison of 2 very different descriptions of the same product.
  6. Too Much is a Bad Thing: Don’t overwhelm your customers at the outset with a huge, novel size product description. Crutchfield uses a JavaScript enabled “Read more” link to hide or show additional product information.

As always, please leave a comment if you have any more suggestions to add to these.

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5 Responses to “6 Tips for Improving Your Product Descriptions” by Justin Palmer

  1. sir jorge Says:

    not bad, not bad at all

  2. (EMP) E-Marketing Performance » : » Team Reading List 10.18.07 Says:

    [...] 6 Tips for Improving Your Product Descriptions [...]

  3. Coffee Break - October 19, 2007 Says:

    [...] 6 Tips for Improving Your Product Descriptions – Palmer Web Marketing [...]

  4. Yuri Says:

    What I’d add is to use the words your customers use by using keyword research and to add persuasion and call to action to the copy. These points aren’t well known and documented, but the general idea is to tell people to get the benefit of the product, while using the words they’d use for it.

  5. 10 Steps to SEO-ing Product Pages Says:

    [...] a Unique Product Description: Too often, product descriptions are a neglected afterthought of online merchandising. Why not just show a few snazzy pics? After [...]

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