How To Create Effective Product Descriptions? - Semalt Tips
Product descriptions play an important role in the purchasing process. We advise here on where to start creating descriptions and how to optimize them in terms of SEO.
Product descriptions can give sleepless nights to many copywriters, but also owners of online stores. But even if you do sleep peacefully, you must be aware of the importance of this basic information about the products offered in the purchasing process. Treating descriptions with neglect, and even worse, ignoring the very process of creating them can bring deplorable results - in terms of conversion and website position on Google. And that's what this article is about: creating product descriptions.
How important is the product description in e-commerce?
Seemingly, we use to think that the product description could be a mandatory, though not very important, element of an online store. Nothing could be more wrong! To prove how much impact online store descriptions have on buyers, take a look at some interesting statistics.
Did you know that over 81 per cent of consumers do research about a product before making an online purchase? This means that most of us check product photos, descriptions and specifications, and compare reviews before buying. Only after such research do we start to think about a real purchase.
But how do you go about creating effective descriptions? More on that, below in the article.
Product descriptions - where to start?
Suppose we have an online store where we sell raincoats. We have over 100 different product descriptions to create. How to approach it? Let's start with the fact that before we get to creating the descriptions themselves, we should have a specific target group. Who is our potential client? What does he or she like? What language does he or she communicate in? In short: we need to have a buyer persona.
If we know the answers to the above questions, we can create not only effective product descriptions but also the entire brand communication of our e-commerce.
Product descriptions should also have a unified structure so that the customer, when familiarising himself with the webshop, knows what information he or she will find in a specific place, for example on the product page. Most of us are visual learners, so standardised descriptions can certainly help navigate the webshop and speed up the buying process. Provided, of course, that one finds all the information one needs.
- Each description should bring the customer closer to the idea he/she has of the product. After all, they cannot see the product live, let alone touch it. The description should contain the full name of the product and its most important features.
- Specify the USP (Unique Selling Point), i.e. the unique feature of the product. Why is this particular jacket better than competition jackets? What gives this product an advantage over others in the same category? Use the selected benefit in all communications.
- Focus on product features. Let's go back to our jackets: in the description, we should give features such as pattern, size, are they made of cotton or rather, elastane? Are they women's, men's or maybe children's jackets? How to take care of our jackets - can they be washed in a washing machine at a murderous speed? Etc... In short: just think about what you as a customer need to know about the product before you buy it. This approach definitely facilitates the creation of descriptions.
- Don't forget about CTA (call to action) - contrary to appearances, it really has power! Buy now, Get a 10% discount, and Order! Encourage the client to act before they change their mind.
Why copying the manufacturer's description is not a good idea?
Most products have the original manufacturer's description. It often happens that we come across the same product description in several online stores. It is good if it is exhaustive and based on it we can determine whether a given item is worth buying. Usually, however, such descriptions turn out to be insufficient, they lack information that is important from the consumer's point of view. And above all, such descriptions usually lack the language of benefits.
If a consumer has abandoned a purchase in store 'B' because he/she didn't find important information in the [manufacturer's] description, you can be almost certain that if he/she comes across the same copied description in store 'C' - he/she will not buy there either.
What does this mean in practice? Firstly, the online store doesn't really know what it's selling. And secondly, Google algorithms definitely do not want to cooperate with a website that notoriously duplicates content.
And what if we have dozens of products in the store, differing only in colour? In such a situation, it is difficult to create dozens of different products. However, it is worth differentiating keywords and content in this case. The descriptions themselves will, of course, be similar, but not the same. It's also a good idea to add one or two sentences about a changing feature (colour in this case).
Take care of the correctness and formatting of the description
The text must be correct not only in terms of language (and style) but also correctly formatted. In this case, sloppiness will deprive us of money (and trust, while the loss of trust in business usually also involves the loss of money), because the apparent saving on texts will result in a lower conversion.
It is good practice to divide the description into paragraphs to avoid the impression of being overwhelmed by the accumulated text. Highlight selected fragments, e.g. by making the text bold - most Internet users scan the text with their eyes and catch individual words. We rarely read a text from cover to cover.
- use bulleted lists - they condense knowledge and look attractive;
- avoid complex sentences and multiple complex ones;
- use simple, uncomplicated vocabulary;
- avoid the passive voice.
Let go of specialized vocabulary if you can use simpler substitutes. And if you must, place them rather in the additional description, which, as a rule, accurately approximates the product specification.
How to optimize your product description for SEO
Write for people, not robots - I think we've already established that. But writing texts for the Internet is related to SEO anyway. If we want to fight for the website's visibility in the search engine - text optimization is a must.
Elements worth optimizing are:
First of all, determine the right keywords that you will include in the descriptions. A tool like The Dedicated SEO Dashboard will help with this, thanks to which you can check the position and popularity of individual phrases.
The product description is also a good place to use a long tail phrase. These phrases are less competitive than high-search keywords. But this does not mean that they are less valuable - they also bring traffic and can lead to effective conversion. Usually, users searching the web for long-tail phrases are more determined to buy. It is worth using them consciously!
Establish semantic keywords (LSI - Latent Semantic Indexing). For example, if your keyword is 'curtain', use in the description: window, interior, decor, living room. Thanks to this, you will bring Google's robots closer to the topic of the content, and the description itself will simply be more interesting.
The right length
There is really no limit to the length of descriptions. It has been assumed that an average of 300 words is enough for one description, but remember that the description should be comprehensive. So, take it as a suggestion.
However, do not overdo it with the number of keywords! Don't force keyword stuffing, it will do more harm than good. 2-3 keywords are enough for a description. Use synonyms.
H1, H2, H3 headings
Lay out the headlines. In the title (H1) put the brand, model, and colour, i.e. what will allow the customer to recognize the product. On the other hand, use the H2 and H3 headings for subheadings or elements that start a given thread in the product description. [Do not repeat the exact name in other headings - it should only be within the H1].
It's clear that a computer fan is unlikely to have a problem deciphering such a title: Ideapad 3-17ADA (81W20017PB) - 256GB M.2 PCIe | 8GB, but an ordinary mortal may have a problem with it. ? It is worth adding at the beginning of the title, at least the information that it is a laptop.
Headers are a very important part of SEO. They allow robots to assess the value of content and recognize the topic of a given page. They also make it easier to scan the text with your eyes, making it easier for the reader to find the information he/she needs.
Main and additional description
A good practice is to divide the product description into two parts - main and additional. It is not mandatory, but it will easily separate the content, and the additional description can be used for details related to the product - e.g. exact specification.
Photo attributes: ALT
Image optimization is a very important issue, although often ignored. Don't forget to add attributes like TITLE and ALT to your photos. This is especially important in e-commerce. Effectively used attributes allow you to increase traffic in the e-shop by searching for images.
ALT - alternative text
ALT or alternative text is a verbal description of the photo. If the image for some reason does not load correctly on the page, thanks to ALT, Google's robots can still analyze the resource and index it correctly.
It is worth adding the selected keyword in the alternative text. ALT allows you to use only 5 to 15 words
Attributes give one more possibility to place unique texts on the page. So it's worth using them wisely.
This point goes slightly beyond preparing descriptions and is an element of website optimization, but it can affect the reception of content. Friendly links allow you to easily find yourself in the structure of the website.
In addition, friendly URLs are easy to remember, which increases the chance of a sale.
Take care of internal linking
Speaking of links, it is also worth taking care of good internal linking on the product subpage. Internal links can lead to similar products, category pages or subpages with products of a given manufacturer.
Not only do they help you navigate the site, but they encourage you to add more products to your shopping cart. And at the same time, they support SEO - a larger number of linked and indexed pages is a chance for a better position of the page in the search engine.
Use META tags
META tags are located in the page code in the <head> section and contain information about the content of the page. Meta tags that are worth completing are TITLE and Meta Description. It is these tags that the Internet user sees when he/she uses the search engine and looks for, for example, food for his/her pet.
Meta tags should contain keywords, but above all, they should encourage clicking on the link. The Yoast SEO plugin for WordPress is a great help.
How many characters should meta tags have? It is assumed that the meta title should have 50-70 characters, and the meta description is max. 160 characters.
Even if your descriptions are interesting and unconventional, they must include product specifications. The best on the market, the highest quality - it doesn't mean much to the customer. Focus on the product - if you're selling a jacket, focus on its features (waterproof, windproof) rather than the fact that it's super trendy or popular.
- set the right keywords;
- put in the title: brand, model, and colour of the product;
- the title must be understandable;
- provide the specification and detailed information about the product, also use long tail phrases;
- do not exaggerate with the number of keywords in the description - use the key phrase up to 3 times - more looks unnatural;
- use a tool like The Dedicated SEO Dashboard and check which keywords are worth including in the description;
- do not forget about the headlines and ALT attributes of photos;
- take care of friendly URL addresses;
- take care of internal linking in your store and add links to similar products in a visible place - you will not only improve the positioning of the website, but you can also increase sales in a relatively easy way.