Effective product descriptions: why they matter and how they can increase your sales

Effective product descriptions: why they matter and how they can increase your sales

The importance of knowing how to sell yourself with effective product descriptions.

Having an excellent product is not enough for achieving that highly sought-after success: sure, it’s the most desirable starting point, but the path is still long and full of many other elements that must be considered and made the most of in order to reach the top.

Indeed, it is not always a given that quality, however high it may be, can “sell itself”. So much falls on the spheres of communication and marketing; although they come with billions of different nuances, they share one and the same precise goal: to sell.

As customers, we can all confirm that how a product is presented has a profound effect on purchasing and, in parallel, also on eventual brand loyalty. This is true for more traditional purchases, where the game is mainly led by the salesperson, his or her ability to highlight the right product features, and most importantly, to establish a relationship of mutual trust with the customer. If we relate to the human component in person, and can be directed (even easily) by it in one direction rather than another, the situation is clearly different for e-commerce.

By now, most people choose to buy online because it is often more convenient, economical and practical. The absence of a person who can immediately clarify any doubts and the inability to see and touch the product can, however, be major obstacles in this context. What is the solution for ensuring that this doesn’t happen, thus guaranteeing a pleasant and immediate shopping experience? Excellent, engaging, detailed product descriptions.


How to write effective product descriptions

Product descriptions, especially in the online world, are one of the most powerful tools for urging a customer to purchase.

Making them unique and tailor-made not only for the brand, but also for individual products, is a great investment that is absolutely worth focusing on. In fact, consider that about 20% of unsuccessful purchases are precisely caused by bad product descriptions.

These must be curated by a team of professionals which includes marketing experts and copywriters with fresh and creative ideas. Only then can a connection with the customer truly be made and a door, albeit metaphorical, opened to the whole world behind the product and brand.


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In order to write effective product descriptions that will capture and influence those reading them, in addition to taking oh-so-important SEO (Search Engine Optimisation) into consideration, guidelines must be followed from both a content and style/form perspective:

  1. fully understand the type of target audience and remember that the final product is intended precisely for them. Based on this, then decide the line best suited for making your descriptions hit the mark and fully satisfy the reader;
  2. specify the product’s technical characteristics, mode of use and advantages, highlighting everything that distinguishes it from the competition;
  3. include reviews from other customers, perhaps with photos attached, so as to provide tangible evidence of the product’s validity and strengths. In doing so, the customer will feel less inhibited by any doubts and much more likely to buy;
  4. use short descriptions which include bulleted lists which catch the eye more easily, interspersed with paragraphs that provide more freedom of movement and opportunity to fully modulate and express your tone;
  5. when possible, opt for the use of storytelling and evocative language. This will ensure a twofold positive effect on the reader and possible customer, who will be moved from both an emotional and sensory point of view.


What benefits can be achieved?

Well, the guidelines for convincing and persuading are quite clear, and when combined with an extra touch of grit and personality on the company’s part, they can really lead to amazing results. Yet another variable comes with all this that should not be underestimated: having a multilingual e-commerce site.

effective product descriptionThere are countless advantages to making your site accessible in various languages and getting your name out there. At least theoretically, a larger audience equals increased sales, and if everything is done correctly, increased loyalty to the company. These are two very good reasons to consider placing your e-commerce site on the foreign market as well.

Translating an e-commerce site with its relative product descriptions is no child’s play. Doing so requires prepared professionals not only in translation, meaning experts in the target language and culture, but also in marketing. Transcreation and localisation are very important services for those who want to expand their business internationally. It is not enough to mechanically translate all the e-commerce content, as comprehensively adapting it to the target market is essential. In a nutshell, this means acting both linguistically and culturally: keeping the brand image consistent at all times, getting closer to the target audience, and making sure that the effect of the product descriptions is always the same: to amaze, captivate and convince.

Maintaining this consistency and harmony requires starting from the points listed above and shaping them with a different client in mind, who will have different sensitivities. It is clear that in some circumstances relatively few changes will need to be made, while others require more work. In any case, obtaining effective product descriptions that manage to give a clear and complete idea of the product and brand must be a top priority for a multilingual e-commerce site as well.

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foto lara panicucci


Lara Panicucci

Translator (and, ideally, bookseller) wannabe, she dreams a life between pages and words. Some would say, and probably already did, that she is like as an “autumn evening” (“Doctor Zhivago”). Note that she is also a world champion of dunking biscuits into hot tea. 

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