How to Create Enticing Product Descriptions on Your E-Commerce Site

tips on creating effective product listing pages

$160.3 billion dollars — that’s what Americans spent on e-commerce shopping in the first three months of 2020 alone.

That number represents a 14.8 percent increase in e-commerce spending compared to the same period last year. Now, stop to think about how the novel coronavirus, Covid-19, has changed the way we interact in physical spaces. Do you really think e-commerce is going to go away or diminish anytime soon? 

With that in mind, we want to see you succeed in your e-commerce efforts, so we’ve written this article to detail five things you can do to improve your e-commerce website product pages and convert more customers.

If you’re just starting out on your e-commerce journey, you also might want to read this article about how to choose the perfect e-commerce domain name and learn about e-commerce website builders and hosting plans.

5 Tips to Improve Your E-Commerce Product Pages

 1. Know who your audience is and who’s buying your product.

Your product pages are designed to do one thing — that’s sell.

In order to optimize your product page for the most sales, you need to have a clear understanding of who your product is intended for. 

Take some time to create a picture of your ideal customer, or buyer persona. This step is a MUST, so if you haven’t done it yet, you need to. Understanding your ideal customer persona includes understanding their needs, their problems, and their wants. Those can help you understand what motivates them to buy your product, or not. And you can use these insights to fashion your products into the most desirable solutions for their needs, increasing the likelihood that they’ll buy from you. 

As you start mapping out your ideal buyer persona, give this some thought: What kind of people are they?

We don’t mean “good” or “bad,” “nice” or “mean,” but broadly speaking, who are they — men, women, both? Are they older or younger? What’s their education level? Do they have disposable income? All of these things play into people’s purchasing decisions and patterns, so spend time learning them. 

When you think about your ideal customer, keep in mind that they could be different from your product’s end user. For example, if you sell kids books or items for teenagers, they’re not the ones who ultimately click “Buy.” Instead, it’s their parents.

While your products have to appeal to the end user, it helps to know who’s clicking “Buy Now” so you can cater your product page and descriptions to entice them to complete the purchase.

2. Use photos, images, and video to your advantage.

It’s trite, but there’s truth to it: A picture speaks a thousand words.

Customers shopping in stores have the advantages of touch, sight, and sometimes taste, when it comes to inspecting products pre-purchase. All of these senses help inform them about the product and make a final buying decision.

You won’t get that advantage when selling online, so you have to do your best to portray your products as completely and as well as possible. That means taking studio-quality photos (there are plenty of DIY tricks out there so it doesn’t cost you a fortune), relevant images, and videos when appropriate.  

Show your products in use, like in the example from Magnolia Market above, so people really get a sense of what they can do. 

3. Finesse your product descriptions and CTAs.

As we mentioned earlier, everything on your product pages should be designed with one goal in mind — to sell your product. That includes any writing, or copy, on your pages.

Arguably, the most important copy on this page will be your CTA, or call-to-action. CTAs are things like buttons that prompt, “Buy Now” or “Add to Cart.”

Keep your CTAs clear and direct, not wordy and inconclusive. If you want someone to buy something, then your button should tell them as much. Never leave the burden of guessing what they’re supposed to do next to your customer.

As your CTA is vitally important to your product page, make sure it’s visible. Don’t clutter it with too much text, especially in the same color. If you do that, you’ll risk someone glazing right over it when they scan your page because it won’t stand out and command the attention that it rightfully should.

Here’s an example of a product listing from The Body Shop that illustrates what we mean.

When you look at the image, the first thing to catch your eye is their product — the images they use are bright and evoke the cooling, refreshing feeling their product is destined to give you.

But the next thing our eyes jump to is their CTA, “Add to bag.” It’s big, bold, and black, which contrasts the colors of the product images, and it commands attention, just as it should.

Beneath their CTA you’ll find their product description. Here’s what makes it a good one, and what you should remember when creating your own:

  • They begin by speaking directly to the consumer, “Slather on a dollop…”
  • They use their brand voice. Not formal or choppy, but casual and inviting.
  • They highlight the value and benefits the product provides to the consumer, “Skin feels softer, smoother, and instantly cooler,” instead of listing off ingredients and their clinical uses, which no one would find inviting. Remember, features tell but benefits sell!

The bottom line is that you should be making sure you’re speaking to your customer — address them by using the word “you” and explain how your product benefits them without drowning them in information. Check out these words that can help you sell and consider including them in your product descriptions where appropriate.  

4. Avoid unnecessary distractions.

Ah, humans. We’re an incredibly adept species that’s come a long way over the course of history. And yet, over the years we seem to have lost some of our attention span.

Considering how easy we are to distract, it’s best to keep your product page as clean and simple as you can. Here’s what we suggest taking into account before designing your product pages.

  • Keep important information front and center, not below the fold where someone needs to scroll down to view it.
  • Avoid unnecessary links. Every link on your page that isn’t needed or required is just another opportunity for someone to click away before completing their purchase.
  • Leave enough white space on the page so their eyes can focus on what’s most important.
    • Too much visual clutter both distracts and affects loading time on pages.
    • White space can be cleverly used in your copy by adjusting your margins or line height and letter spacing.

5. Build consumer confidence with reviews.

How often do you stop and read reviews before committing to a purchase?

If you’re like most of us, then customer reviews make up an integral part of your decision to purchase. It’s comforting to know what others think of something, and that they find it useful and valuable (or not), before pulling the plug and spending our hard-earned money.

Customer reviews, and any photos they supply, provide an intimate view into how the product functions. That review, the feedback the customer leaves, doesn’t just convince prospective customers that their money will be well spent; it can help you understand where to improve future iterations of your products and services.

Try soliciting reviews post-purchase. If your customer has opted in to receive your emails, then you can send them a request for a review. And if you’re feeling especially nice, you can incentivize them to leave a review with the promise of a discount on a future purchase — just don’t try to influence what they write.

The question we see playing in your minds is, “What happens if it’s a bad review?” And you know what? You’re right in asking it.

If you get a bad review, it’s no time to panic. Instead, it’s your time to shine. If prospective customers see you taking the time to address concerns and make things right with existing customers, then they’ll be more inclined to do business with you.

It’s time to create your product listing pages.

Taking what you’ve learned from this post, it’s time to create your product pages.

You can start an e-commerce website pretty easily nowadays. There are tools and website builders designed to make the process intuitive and hassle-free.

In fact, our WebsiteBuilder is AI-powered, so after you answer a few questions (like what kind of business you are) it will build a functioning website for you. Then all you’ll need to do is fill in the details and refine it — none of which requires you to be “techy” or have some advanced coding knowledge.

We wish you the best of luck as you set up your e-commerce website and optimize your pages. If you have any questions, let us know in the comments. 

Natalie Brownell
Natalie Brownell Marketing Manager. She believes in the power of words and loves a good story. She resides in MA and spends her days behind the keyboard with her two feline coworkers. Connect with her on LinkedIn.

Natalie Brownell
Natalie Brownell Marketing Manager. She believes in the power of words and loves a good story. She resides in MA and spends her days behind the keyboard with her two feline coworkers. Connect with her on LinkedIn.