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5 tips for writing product descriptions that convert

Great product descriptions can turn skeptical visitors into happy customers. Learn how to write product descriptions that convert with these 5 tips.

After weeks of hard work, you’re ready to sell your digital product on your website. You have a great product that you know can help your customers accomplish their goals and overcome obstacles.

Now, how do you convince site visitors to buy it?

By writing high-quality product descriptions for your sales pages.

Great product descriptions play three important roles:

  1. Help potential customers answer, “Is this for me?”

  2. Persuade visitors to buy your product.

  3. Make your product more likely to show up in search results.

And you don’t have to be a master copywriter to create product descriptions that intrigue audiences and increase sales.

In this article, we’ll cover five tips to write effective product descriptions that turn website visitors into happy customers, along with templates to help you get started.

Tip #1: Know your target audience

Your product description helps potential customers answer, “Is this the right product for me?” But you can’t answer that question if you don’t know who your target audience is.

If you conducted customer research while creating your product, you can use those insights to write informed product copy that helps your audience feel connected to you and your product.

If you don’t know much about your ideal customers or want to add to what you already know, consider creating buyer personas. Buyer personas “describe who your ideal customers are, what their days are like, the challenges they face, and how they make decisions”.

A full buyer persona might look like this example of one of Spotify’s target customers:

HubSpot offers buyer persona templates to help you get started.

Your buyer persona should include details like:

  • Demographic info (age, income, education level)

  • Geographic location

  • Interests and hobbies

  • Pain points and obstacles

  • Other businesses they buy from

  • What they like or dislike about your competitors

To build buyer personas, it’s time to do some customer research. Customer research helps you discover what your audience cares about and how they make purchase decisions, so you can craft product descriptions that highlight those factors.

And when you know your audience well, you understand the potential objections that might keep them from buying your product and can address them in your copy.

One of our favorite forms of customer research is also one of the simplest: reading reviews.

Use Google or Amazon to find other products within your niche, then read the reviews. Product reviews tell you what your audience values in similar products, so you can prioritize those things in your product description.

For example, say you’re writing a description for an online course all about dog training. You could search Amazon and read the reviews of books on that topic, like Lucky Dog Lessons: Train Your Dog in 7 Days:

From these reviews, you can see that dog owners want easy-to-understand content that empowers them to train their dogs at home. When you write the product description for your course, you can highlight those benefits.

Reviews also show you what language your audience uses when talking about your topic. Connect with them by using the same language they do in your product description and messaging.

What does all of that customer research look like in action? Take a look at Nicole Saidy’s product description for her online course, Become a UI/UX Designer.

Everything about Nicole’s sales page writing is designed to appeal to her target audience. She acknowledges her audience’s pain points and that she understands transitioning to user experience design can be overwhelming.

In other words, she helps her audience answer the question, “Is this product right for me?” And because she knows her audience well, she can confidently guide them to say, “yes”.

Another key part of knowing and writing copy for your audience is understanding how your product helps them reach their goals or overcome their problems.

Tip #2: Focus on benefits, not features

When you have a product that you’re super proud of, it can be tempting to list out every single product detail in your description. After all, detailed product content is the number one reason shoppers complete transactions.

But a laundry list of product features doesn’t always make for fascinating copy.

Instead of focusing on your product features, focus on its benefits.

Here’s why: A feature is a part of your product, while a benefit is the impact that feature has on your customer. In other words, features are all about your product. Benefits are all about your audience.

Think back to our dog training online course example. Ten hours of training videos might be a feature of that course, but the benefit to the customer is a happier, better-behaved puppy.

To write better sales copy, highlight the results your audience will gain from your product. How will it help them solve their problems? Why do they need it to achieve their goals?

That’s your unique value proposition (UVP): a clear statement that describes how you can solve your customer’s problem better than anyone else.

Minessa Konecky’s Social Strategy Squad Membership product page is an excellent example of copy that focuses on benefits and results.

Instead of using buzzwords and writing tons of paragraphs covering every little detail about her membership, Minessa’s product description is concise, value-packed, and tells readers exactly how they’ll benefit by joining her membership.

A specific UVP is especially important if you’re in a competitive niche for online courses or other digital products.

You may want to use vague language to appeal to as many people as possible, but that makes it harder for visitors to understand why they should choose your product over another.

It also makes it harder for you to rank for the right search keywords — and ranking on search is exactly what our next tip is about.

Tip #3: Optimize for search engines

You can use the first two tips to write an amazing product description, but it won’t be effective unless the right audience reads it. Writing your product descriptions with search engine optimization (SEO) in mind helps get your product in front of the right audience.

Optimized content shows up higher in the search results for relevant keywords and phrases. The more you optimize your content, the easier it is for new people to discover it through search.

Plus, organic search is responsible for 53% of all online traffic, and the first five results of any Google search account for 67.6% of all clicks.

Imagine that you sell online courses focused on teaching busy parents how to budget. If I’m a busy parent who’s struggling to maintain my family’s budget, I might Google a phrase like “budgeting for busy moms”.

When you optimize your product description for that search term, you’re more likely to show up on the first page or two of search results. And if I click on your page, I’ll discover a product that meets my needs.

SEO can seem intimidating, but don’t worry: You don’t have to be an SEO pro to optimize your product descriptions for search.

There are a variety of free SEO tools to help with almost every aspect of SEO, including keyword research. These tools help you identify popular words and phrases people enter into search engines.

They also tell you keyword difficulty, or how difficult it is for content to rank for a certain keyword, and monthly search volume, or how many times a keyword is searched in a month. Both of these metrics help you figure out your ideal keywords.

For a tutorial on conducting keyword research, check out this article on how to do SEO for digital products.

All in all, simple SEO is a great way to drive organic traffic to your product pages and get your information products in front of more potential customers.

Just make sure that you’re writing for people first, search engines second. Instead of using as many keywords as you can, use them in a way that feels natural and easy to read.

Speaking of which, our next tip is all about making your product descriptions more readable.

Tip #4: Make it scannable

As a writer, I’d love to believe that people come to a blog post and read every single word on the page. But unfortunately, that’s just not the case.

People spend an average of just 5.59 seconds looking at a website’s written content.

And readability studies by Nielsen Norman Group found that, in an “attempt to be efficient,” people naturally scan text rather than reading word-for-word.

The same goes for product descriptions (and pretty much all online written content). We scan in different patterns depending on the layout of the content.

For example, when pages have distinct cells of content, people scan in a “lawn-mower pattern”:

On the other hand, when a page has no subheadings or bullets, readers process information in an F-shaped pattern, fixating on the words toward the beginning of each line and the top of the page:

So, what does all this mean for your product descriptions?

To make the most of the way people read online, write your product descriptions with skimmers and scanners in mind. Here’s how:

  • Use bullet points and headings to break the text.

  • Put the most important and relevant information at the top of the page.

  • Bold important info.

  • Make use of white space by adding section breaks.

  • Use product images and videos to break up text and make your content more engaging.

  • Include FAQs to help people find the exact answer they’re looking for.

  • Avoid generic calls-to-action like “get started”. They’re easy to skim past and can be

    misleading for first-time visitors.

No-Code MVP’s product description is a great example of scannable content:

No-Code MVP uses scannable copy to answer the question we talked about back in step one: “Is this product right for me?” And the use of bulleted lists, emoji, and bolding keep the content more engaging and easier to read than a block of text.

Alright, we’ve got one more product description tip, and it features one of my favorite — and one of the most effective — sales copywriting tools.

Tip #5: Add social proof

You can emphasize results and benefits in your product descriptions, but your audience may not take your word for it — unless you have proof.

Only a third of people say they trust the brands they buy from. Social proof like testimonials and reviews gives you and your product credibility. When you showcase your customers’ results and feedback, you show potential buyers, “This could be you”.

Sales page testimonials and product reviews work even better for higher-priced digital products, like expensive online courses, coaching, and annual memberships.

Research shows that conversion rates rose by 380% when reviews were included on a higher-priced product’s landing page.

For example, testimonials on entrepreneur and mindset coach Becky Mollenkamp’s coaching page emphasize the value of Becky’s product:

Testimonials are especially vital for products that offer specific results.

Take Austin of The Impeccable Investor, for instance. Austin helps clients learn more about the stock market so that they can make better investments. He features his students’ results on his testimonials page:

These testimonials help Austin’s target audience feel confident that they can see real returns by learning more about the stock market through Austin’s products.

The Podia Editor makes it easy for creators like Austin to add testimonials to their product pages. (Don’t have a Podia account? Sign up for a free 14-day trial here.)

All you need to do is open the Editor, navigate to your product page, and add a new section by clicking the plus sign:

Then, select “Testimonials” from the menu of section types on the left:

From there, it’s simple to add, design, and rearrange testimonials on your product page:

And just like that, you have testimonials on your product page.

To learn more about using customer testimonials, check out our guide on how to ask for testimonials, including testimonial request templates.

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Product description templates you can use today

Last but not least, here are some templates to help you start writing effective, easy-to-read product descriptions.

Don’t be afraid to test different copy to see which converts best. Feel free to play around with the structure, mix and match, or create something completely new.

Template #1

Template #1

Hi, I’m [Name].

I help people like you learn to [skill], [skill], and [skill] every day. Are you ready to [benefit] and [benefit]? Then let’s get started.

[CTA button]

Example:

Hi, I’m Rachel.

I help people like you learn to communicate with, understand, and train their pets every day. Are you ready to help your dog become more comfortable and calm in stressful situations? Then let’s get started.

[Start training today]

Template #2

Template #2

What you’ll get inside [offer]:

  • [detail], so you can [benefit]
  • [detail], so you can [benefit]
  • [detail], so you can avoid [pain point]

Example:

What you’ll get inside Delicious Lean Meals:

  • 15 lean meal recipes, so you can still eat scrumptious meals
  • Food journal, so you can track your daily diet
  • 3 coaching calls, so you can avoid falling off your plan

Template #3

Template #3

Here’s how it works:

[step 1]
[step 2]
[step 3]
[benefit]

Example:

Here’s how it works:

  • Create an account
  • Choose an event category
  • Submit your budget
  • Get matched up with the right event planner

Template 4

Template #4

Here are a few ways people are using [offer]:

[example + results]
[example + results]
[example + results]

Example:

Here are a few ways people are using Copywriting Secrets:

  • Cherry wrote a series of sales emails and closed three deals right away.
  • Jordan reached out to a major influencer and became a guest on a famous podcast.
  • Alex gave his sales page a refresh and doubled his course enrollments.

Write descriptions that make your products fly off the (virtual) shelves

A good product description can mean the difference between an uninterested visitor clicking the back button and a happy new audience member becoming a loyal customer.

To recap, here are five tried-and-true strategies for writing stellar product descriptions:

  • Know who your audience is and what they’re looking for. When you know who can benefit from your product, you can connect with them through copy.

  • Focus on your product’s benefits, not just its features. Tell your audience exactly how your product will positively impact their lives.

  • Optimize your product descriptions for search. Use SEO to help the right audiences discover your product organically.

  • Make your product descriptions scanner-friendly with simple, easy-to-read formatting.

  • Add social proof like reviews and testimonials to build trust with potential buyers and show off customers’ and students’ success.

With these tips under your belt, you’re well on your way to writing product descriptions that boost your sales and get customers excited to buy.

A portrait of Rachel Burns

About the author

Rachel is a content marketer for Podia, an all-in-one platform where online courses, digital downloads, and membership websites – alongside their creators – thrive. When she’s not writing, you can find her rescuing dogs, baking something, or extolling the virtue of the Oxford comma.