Writing product descriptions can be daunting and difficult. When I am working with client companies, I often find their product copy can be cheesy or dry. This is particularly true for resellers, who tend to use the manufacturer's descriptions. Here are four ways to improve your product description and better engage with customers.
1. Inject some personality
The product copy should reflect your company's values. If you are a large corporation and your message is 'a safe pair of hands', then the text included should be a reflection of that message. If you are all about the fun, the product description should also be fun. Make sure you stay true to your brand and your values. Take a company like Innocent Drinks. They were one of the first companies to give their products personalities. Their style is cheeky, friendly and amusing, as are their product descriptions. The product copy for their strawberry and banana smoothie is a great example:
"Whether they’re foraged at a pick-your-own, served with a side of cream at the tennis or crushed lovingly into our drinks, strawberries are delicious. And we’re very fussy about which strawberries we use in our smoothies, which is why we grow them where the sun always shines and taste them up to seven times before they go into our bottles. And it’s also why we’ve added 25% more of them to this smoothie. The more the berrier, indeed".
As you can see it is fun, entertaining, friendly and completely reflects their company brand and identity. Now, I'm not on any sort of commission for Innocent but they are a good example of a strong brand who write product copy that is very much in keeping with their company. When you read the product descriptions you could probably guess the company without even seeing the item.
2. Employ an expert
If you are a business that sells thousands of different products, then writing product copy can feel well, just a bit brutal. Employing a copy writer can ensure engaging copy, written in 'plain English'. Be aware that the writer needs to really 'get' you as an organisation. They need to understand where you are coming from and what you represent, otherwise it will never reflect your personality.
3.Tell a story
I am a firm believer in the power of storytelling. This is not a new thing. In fact, if you look around, storytelling is used all the time and to great effect. You see it used in politics, training, sales, marketing and in advertising. You are looking to connect emotionally with your potential customer. Along with the images and reviews, the product description builds up a picture, in the visitor's mind, of what it might be like to own the item. The more realistic that fantasy, the more you will connect on an emotional level with the visitor and the more likely they are to press the 'buy now' button. This may all seem terribly manipulative which is exactly why is also needs to be completely authentic. What is it that makes your brand different? Why should people choose your products? What is your USP? If you manufacture your products sustainably and this is a core value, this should definitely be emphasised in your product copy. If you only make one thing and your USP is that you are the best at making it, then make that part of your story.
Storytelling is a great way to connect with your customers in a way that is both engaging and emotive. Get it right and people will buy into your brand and start to push that 'order now' button. Get it wrong and new leads will be turned right off.
4.Cross your t's and dot your i's
You have moved heaven and earth to ensure that your product copy is engaging and a reflection of who you are as a company. Don't let yourself down with sloppy grammar and spelling mistakes. If your style is informal and chatty, there is a greater risk of grammatical errors. Make sure you run all your copy through a spell checker and get someone who has not been involved in the writing process to give it a quick read through. Customers need to feel confident that you are a professional organisation. Minor errors can make everything feel very amateur. Don't make it hard for visitors to press the 'buy now' button.
Do you have other tips and hints on how to write great product descriptions? If so, we'd love to hear from you.