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Ultimate Guide To Writing SEO Product Descriptions

September 17, 2018
- Update on 
September 18, 2018
BACK TO BLOG

Ultimate Guide To Writing SEO Product Descriptions

September 17, 2018
- Update on 
September 18, 2018
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Online buyers are searching for specific products that they need. They want a seamless and simple shopping experience – and, luckily, that is exactly what the internet offers. Consumers can quickly access a variety of products based on a simple search term and compare and contrast different items to find the one they want. As you manage your ecommerce store, you can use search terms as a strategy to improve the success of your store. Customers want to find your product, but the internet is often full of similar items, so you have to ensure that you have all the right measures in place to help them easily be directed to your store. Users rely on search engines to hone in on the products they need, which is why SEO product descriptions are so crucial when it comes to the success of an online business. 

Read on for the problem with most product descriptions and for the 8 keys to improving SEO for your products and earning visibility on Google and other search engines.

Problem with product descriptions and SEO

Many product descriptions can be poorly written, overly verbose or lacking appropriate details. Or, even worse, they don’t exist. Product descriptions might seem like just a trivial part of a company’s website and overall sales in the grand scheme of conversion optimization and ROI. That’s why so many brands tend to brush it off and focus on the product itself (or on other marketing efforts). But when companies put extra effort into product descriptions, it makes the item easier to find and also enhances the user’s experience and convenience. Writing optimized content that caters to a user's needs, expectations, and desires can benefit your business in enormous ways.

Without SEO product descriptions, your items are irrelevant to search engines. Every search engine works like a web directory – it has to track thousands of websites against a search term. To help users find relevant websites at the top of the SERPs, the search algorithms have to examine the uniqueness, originality, and relevance of a web page. So for a business to stay on top of search results, you need the description of the product to be SEO-friendly and also engaging to the reader. Here are some of the key guidelines to follow when writing an SEO product description.

1. Focus on the key features

Online businesses have to battle with a lot of competition. In order to stand out from the crowd, merchants need to make sure they differentiate products by highlighting their best features. SEO product descriptions should always focus on key features and functionalities so that customers are well aware of what they stand to gain by purchasing the product. You need to keep the key selling points of your products front and center in your description. That way, consumers can scan a page to find out if your product is what they are looking for or if they need to keep shopping.

Because buyers have so many options to choose from, they want to be able to quickly skim a description and scan a view of your landing page to find out what they are getting. Grab their attention by using bullet points to detail the core features and make a case for why your product is head-and-shoulders above what your competitors are offering.

2. Have a deep understanding of the product

Many companies quickly dash off product listings or outsource copywriters to do so who don’t really have a deep grasp of the item and its intended purpose. It’s hard to convince a consumer that they really need your product if you don’t firmly understand what purpose it serves. Why is your business producing the items and what are the pain points that you are trying to fix for your customers? An SEO product description requires a total, in-depth understanding of the product before you can discuss it. Otherwise, you can just write a general intro that fails to include its unique selling points. On your website, this can mean the difference between your product grabbing the attention of a consumer or completely losing their interest. When writing your SEO product description, keep the following questions in mind:

  • What is the purpose of the product?
  • Have you used it yourself to see how it works?
  • What are the benefits for users?
  • What are the technical details?

You want to understand the product inside and out in order to share details with authority and convince the user why your product is the best one available.

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3. Keep your language simple

There is a lot of talk about the importance of using unique language in writing SEO product descriptions. While this does help boost your rankings in Google’s search algorithms, you don’t need to go overboard with obscure words. Your word selection is critical and should be concise and readable for all common users. You don’t want to alienate potential buyers with arcane or difficult words. Don't confront online shoppers with words they don't understand. It doesn’t matter if you’re targeting scientists or high school students, it’s always better to avoid difficult language and technical jargon and stick with simple words and sentences that flow.

4. Develop personas

Every product should have a specific audience. But buyer personas are an even better way of making sure that you know exactly who you are targeting so you can write SEO product descriptions that appeal directly to them. You have to define the people who are most likely to purchase your product because they are most in need of it. Once you have fleshed out your personas, you can refer to them every time you write an SEO product description to make sure they are top of mind as you're writing.

You can start developing buyer personas by looking at the common behavior of your target audience and mapping out their pain points. It helps to look at the behaviors of buyers of certain types of products. For example, if you are selling running shoes, what type of content are these buyers seeking out? Are they looking up fitness programs? Articles on good running form? This kind of information can help you decide what to include in the product description and bullets.

5. Offer relevant information

Great writers may have a knack for writing funny or flowery descriptions, but an SEO product description is just not the place for it. The goal of search engines is to provide users with the most relevant and valuable information, so it’s best to provide the most useful facts. And in this case, the facts are the potential benefits of using a product. Don’t gush about the superiority of your product. Instead, provide information about the core features and benefits, and let the user decide for themselves what these offerings can do for them. An SEO-friendly product description should provide value as well as incorporate key search terms.

Think about what type of information you would be looking for when deciding whether or not to purchase a product. For instance, if you’re interested in purchasing a desk chair, you would want to know how comfortable it is, if it has wheels, if it is lightweight, what materials it is made from, etc. Using language like “world’s most comfortable chair!” or “great for working” are not informative or accurate. But offering information like “easy to adjust chair height” or “ergonomic support” is actually helpful to the potential buyer.

6. Write distinctive copy

As mentioned above, you don’t want to get too far-out with your language choices. But uniqueness is a core factor in the success of SEO product descriptions. Search algorithms are intelligent, and they can tell when you’ve simply copied product descriptions from competitors or have repeated them across different pages of your site. This kind of spinning and rephrasing won’t get you anywhere today. It pays to spend time writing unique and original copy for each product because this will help differentiate you in the search engines.

Writing original SEO product descriptions can take a little more time than just using a generic template and changing a few words here and there. But it’s worth it. It’s fine to use other products on the market as inspiration, but when you start writing, do so with a clean slate. It makes sense that you would want to start fresh because your product is fresh and better than your competitors. Start with an intro highlighting the core features of your product, and then launch into the benefits of using it. If it makes sense for your product, introduce practical ways a consumer can use your product (e.g., “this all-in-one toolkit comes in handy on camping trips”). And make sure you are writing with the buyer persona in mind.

7. Avoid keyword stuffing

Of course you need to include the right keywords in your SEO product description in order to get your product found online. But search algorithms, not to mention consumers themselves, can tell when you are stuffing in keywords that don’t read naturally or make sense. If you try to put a keyword in more than once per 100 words, it can actually hurt your ranking or get your page flagged as spam. Try to use keywords in the heading, subheadings and body content in a way that feels natural and necessary. You can also optimize images by inserting keywords in the file name, image description and ALT tags (alternate text added to an image tag in HTML).

8. Be authentic

Think about what attracts you to a product as a consumer. Chances are, phrases like “best ever” or “world’s number one” might strike you as inauthentic They sound salesy and fake. Writing successful product descriptions depends on being realistic and not exaggeratory. Today’s consumers are smart, savvy and skeptical. They are humans who want your respect. Write descriptions knowing that they are smart and capable of conducting research and aren’t interested in being duped. They want the facts, and they want to be certain they are making a wise investment based on informed research. They also look for recommendations from other users on your products. So the bottom line is, if you deliver a good product, it will speak for itself when it comes to word-of-mouth marketing. Your goal is to present the important details they need to know in a clear, concise and friendly fashion, and never to hit your customers over the head with pushy sales language. Make sure to stick to the facts, and don’t give your audience any reason to distrust you. It might be tempting to claim that you are a leader in the industry, but if you are a new player, your audience will find it difficult to trust you. And it is very difficult to rebuild trust once it has been damaged.

Conclusion

If you’re trying to build your business, optimizing SEO product descriptions should be a focus of your marketing efforts. It involves research on the best keywords to use for your business, some smart wordsmithing, and a knack for honing in on the key features of your product that differentiate you from your competition. The process of writing product descriptions should be one that you continue to revisit and examine over time.

It might take a little trial-and-error to find the exact recipe that works for you and has the most appeal to your consumers. Some companies might have luck with a straightforward and businesslike approach, while others will have more success with a friendlier, more colloquial tone. Whichever approach you use, make sure that you have an awareness of the features that are in high demand, and that those are clear and evident in the description. Many companies find it works best to write out the product description and then go back to make it SEO-friendly. This ensures that you are including all the key points and information and then inserting keywords where they naturally fit instead of crafting content around the keywords. With a little practice and dedication, you can make your product descriptions work for you and offer your consumers an enjoyable and informative shopping experience.

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