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Content Design Manual – Product Description

December 16, 2016

Welcome back to society agent, I trust you’re happy to be a free man again. Don’t be too over-zealous though, you’re not out of trouble yet. Your antics in the white paper mission will not be forgotten, we just hope you’ve learnt a thing or two about a good story whilst inside. Your new mission – product descriptions. Time for something a little different agent; you’re off babysitting! Why? Because I need one for tonight.

What? You didn’t think I’d let you back into the field after the white paper cock-up, did you? My place at 5pm – sharp! You’ll be selling lemonade.

The Product Description Story

Product Description Story Image

It’s Only Words

It’s only words and when it comes to taking hearts away, it’s all that Ronan Keating has to offer. But what else could you possibly need? Especially when you have a golden voice like Mr Keating has! In all seriousness though, the importance and effect of product description content is often overlooked in eCommerce marketing plans.

It really shouldn’t be though. Sometimes, the struggle to flog an item or sell a service can often be resolved by a simple change in content. Perhaps you have missed out some of the product’s features or maybe you haven’t included a size guide? It could be something simple or something catastrophic. And sometimes something simple can lead to something catastrophic! For example, misspelling Plastic Ducks. Yes, it has happened. Yes, we did. Yes, lesson learnt!

Let’s examine the impatient entrepreneur in the monologue above. Despite the fact it’s been a whole nine minutes, no one has bought any lemonade. Well no surprise really. I mean, fair enough she’s six, but just look at the content! First of all, that’s not how you spell lemonade Suzie! Second of all, what is that customer service about? Something along the lines of ‘Ice-cold, refreshing tall sparkling lemonade’ would work a lot better – with a smile! Appeal to the audience’s needs – the need for refreshment and good taste. Silly Suzie.

The Product Description Checklist

  • Obviously be as descriptive as possible
  • Solve a pain, an issue or a requirement in your content
  • Follow the What, Why, Where, When and How approach
  • Simple, concise and clear language
  • Short sentences and snappy facts
  • Bullet points work well
  • Talk directly to your audience

Text isn’t as Important as Image

Product images are of course extremely important. The selling process online is exceptionally difficult and somewhat farcical without an image. The same cannot be said for services though, as most services online do not require a visual representation. For example, hosting providers or online language courses will sell their services mainly through content rather than imagery.

Nevertheless, the statement that ‘text isn’t as important as image’ is still false for product selling as well. A piece of clothing may look stunning in the photograph, but without an accurate description the user is not going to know if the thing fits their body or style or personal requirements etc. Without the words to accompany the picture, the user is lacking the conviction to purchase. Images provide visual insight but the product description content will provide understanding and feed the imagination. This is the difference between interest inspired by the image and commitment to purchase persuaded by the text.

Remember to be Vivid and Lively

Boring and lazy attempts at describing an image will not help your selling process whatsoever. The most important thing to remember is to be original, vivid and very lively. People don’t often buy things on negative impulse, much the other way around. Really connect with your audience and provide the product or service solution they are looking for through your product description content.


We’ve got three more blogs lined up for the Content Design Manual – the next one is a little bit creepy! We hope you like spiders agent! Watch this space!

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Ian Arnison-Phillips

Director at Content Juice
This piece has been written by Ian Arnison-Phillips. Ian is an experienced content marketer, author and creative writer. His specialisms are web content, blogging, PR and creative content.

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