Blast through their barriers, shatter their defenses, gain their trust!
In 10 seconds or less.
This is what’s needed to convince your site visitor that your brand is the right fit for them. And it starts with compelling product descriptions.
Product descriptions need to guide the reader on an informative, thought-provoking or emotional journey. At the end of the journey, if your content is good enough, you can position yourself as the optimal solution to their pain or desire.
This is the essence of high-converting product descriptions.
So, with Black Friday and a slew of other seasonal holidays on the horizon, I thought I’d cover some product description best practices from Shopify store examples to help you capture conversions this Black Friday. To help you capitalize on these important events and stay profitable long term.
But first, let’s get up to scratch on some of the basics.
Importance of the product page
There’s a metric ton of work involved in creating a brand that’s trustworthy, credible and amasses loyal fans. But, when it comes to the magic of the actual sale, this process is going down on the product page itself.
Compelling product descriptions let you connect with the reader, trigger emotions, tell great stories and show them you can solve their pain.
And while your entire store should be optimized before going live, remember that the majority of traffic you’re sending to your product page stays there. Meaning they either purchase or leave without ever clicking through to other pages on your site.
If you’re sending traffic to a Shopify product page that isn’t optimized to convert, you’re throwing cash down the drain.
Product descriptions are the lifeblood of product pages, and crafting them to convert isn’t as hard as you may think. But it starts with understanding your ideal buyer.
Understanding your ideal buyer and their psychology
Don’t expect to make sales without first understanding your audience. Sales require making a real, meaningful connection with your prospect and understanding the intricacies of their needs and wants.
When you have a clear picture of your ideal buyer, you can craft compelling product descriptions that speak to them on a personal level.
The more personalized your content, the more conversions you’ll get.
Here’s how you get there.
Create buyer personas
Buyer personas are fictional representations of your ideal target customer. They’re not actual people, but they’re based on real-life guys and gals out there in the big world.
The whole idea is to internalize your ideal customer so you can better relate to them.
It’s particularly interesting when we bring seasonal events like Black Friday into the conversation. The example I always use to help merchants create buyer personas looks something like this.
Use forums for research
If you’re like the rest of us walking into a store, hearing “Can I help you with anything?” makes you want to walk right back out again.
Great sales attendants have a different approach. Instead, they’ll strike up a conversation, gauge the energy and slowly find out our needs. Then, when they offer a solution, we’re much more open to it.
It’s this understanding that makes a successful salesperson.
Adopting this mindset in the digital space is as easy as taking to forums, joining communities and starting conversations. Whos’ buying what and why? What are the most common problems that people in these communities face?
I personally use Reddit and Quora to better understand who I’m targeting and how to convince them to buy. Just remember you’re not there to plug your products with links to your store, but rather gather information to optimize your product page descriptions.
Why seasonal events matter in eCommerce?
What is seasonality in eCommerce?
Check out how many Google search queries there were in September in North America for the term “raincoats”.
September just so happens to be when North American Monsoon (NAM) season peaks. So there’s a direct correlation between the seasons and sales.
These seasonal changes in combination with festive events like Christmas increase the demand for relevant products to extremes.
Now, we’re approaching Black Friday, a unique time of year because merchants can essentially market any item without being specific to any niche.
Black Friday got its name because it referred to stores moving from red (losses) to black (profit). Today it remains the most significant time of year to shop in the U.S. And it’s particularly important for eCommerce merchants as more people turn to online and mobile shopping to avoid the stampedes we see year after year.
Now for the stuff that’s going to turn your visitors into buyers. Because to convince shoppers that your brand is right for them, you need compelling product descriptions.
Product description best practices and examples
Reel them in with headlines
“On average, five times as many people read the headline as read the body copy. When you have written your headline, you have spent eighty cents out of your dollar.”
Spoken by a genuine advertising legend, no quote sums up the importance of headlines better.
You need to actively give people a reason to read the rest of your product description with seductive headlines.
It doesn’t matter how outstanding the rest of the page is without motivation to read it. Your description can start with a headline, or it can have multiple headlines throughout to keep the reader engaged.
Here’s an example of a headline that states a benefit while tying in with the “Master-Touch Series”. It’s big, bold and the first thing you see when landing on the product page.
Grillings an art that many people want to accomplish for hosting social barbeques and enjoying holidays. Your buyer persona helps you define the tone of voice to use when crafting headlines.
Turn features into benefits
“People don’t want a quarter-inch drill, they want a quarter-inch hole”
Age-old advice. Generally, folks don’t buy for features (unless it’s a highly-specialized or technical product), but they do buy for benefits. Here’s an example of what I mean.
I recently reviewed a Shopify store selling green tea matcha and noticed they had a section that highlighted benefits, one of which was “more antioxidants”. At first glance, this looks like a clear benefit, but in fact, it’s more of a feature.
Because most people don’t care about antioxidants. They care about how antioxidants can impact their lives.
So the benefits would look more like this:
- Antioxidants protect your cells against oxidative stress
- Slows the aging process
- Reduces the risk of disease
Here’s an example of a skincare product description with ingredients backed by benefits.
Features are definitely stated, but they have to be due to skincare enthusiasts caring so much about ingredient transparency. But still, following each ingredient are cosmetic benefits that educate the reader and influence their purchase decision.
Use bullet points
This is as simple as it sounds. Bullet points are easily scanned and help convey your message quickly to reduce bounce rates.
This is a must thanks to user attention only lasting less than15 seconds.
When you’ve figured out your key benefits, condense them into bullet points and pop them right under your headline. Further down you can expand on each benefit to add more value like in the example above.
Sit across the table
Remember everything you learned about writing in school? Go ahead and throw that out the window, because that’s not how humans talk. And it’s not how humans want to read.
Your writing tone should make it seem like you’re sitting directly across from your site visitor, having a conversation with them.
Urban Daddy showcases the ultimate example of the casual copywriting tone of voice that hits the nail on the head for their target market.
The right tone of voice helps you relate and connect with the reader. Here’s an example of how we were taught to write in school, and how most of us assume robots speak:
“Greetings reader. Welcome to Socks For Jocks, the optimal footwear under covering solution for high-performance sports persons engaging in year-round competitive bouts. Peruse our eclectic range of testimonials from active members of the industry”.
I nearly put myself to sleep just writing it. It’s unnecessarily confusing and puts a barrier between you and the reader. Instead, try this:
“As a top-level athlete, you need the finest material, fit and design. That’s why we invented Socks For Jocks – groundbreaking footwear to help you perform at the highest level. No compromises. Read what people are saying about us here”.
Keep it simple.
Add urgency with countdown timers
Urgency, although generally overdone by new eCommerce merchants, couldn’t be more relevant to Black Friday. There’s a clear time limit of 24 hours which gives you the perfect opportunity to create FOMO (fear of missing out) in the customer’s mind.
One of the most effective ways is to use a countdown timer on the product page, and Black Friday is one of the few times of year you should use one. Just remember to keep it congruent with your site’s color palette to ensure it doesn’t come across spammy like so.
Not only are there multiple colors here, but multiple countdowns – a timer and a “low stock” warning. Take it from personal experience when I say this can quickly destroy your chances of capturing sales. Keep your countdown timer clean and consistent with your brand image like so.
Another easy option is to simply use your announcement bar to tell site visitors about the time frame and details of your Black Friday sale.
Words tell, stories sell
Stories have been used since language began to preserve culture and make sense of the world around us.
Here’s why storytelling is still relevant today for capturing sales:
- Our core emotions haven’t changed
- Our brains still store information in the same way
- We still love to talk about things and people we like/dislike
So how do you effectively use storytelling on the product page for conversions?
Stories release neurochemicals that impact empathy response in people. And we know by now that consumers tend to buy based on emotions, not logic.
The easiest way to implement this is to use storytelling to help customers understand the benefits of your product. Do you have a personal connection to the product you’re selling? Has it impacted your life? What about the lives of your customers?
You can translate the ‘hero’ in a traditional story conquering a ‘villain’ to your ‘customer’ in reality conquering a ‘problem’. Just remember to:
- Paint a picture in the reader’s mind
- Keep it relevant
- Keep it truthful and sincere
- Subtly position your brand as the solution
Harry’s showcase some cracking storytelling throughout their site, from short films to their About Us page below.
Engage with images and video
Remember that spiel about the 15 second attention span? If you’ve already forgotten, you’re part of the statistic.
Don’t worry though, it turns out words aren’t that interesting – video content is the cream of the crop for increasing engagement and user retention on the web.
Video is particularly relevant to eCommerce, with 54% of consumers expecting to see video content from brands. BeardBrand recognizes this and use this special form of content on all their product pages.
If you want to capture audience attention and sales, try opting for these on your product page:
- Video testimonials to add credibility to your brand
- Benefit-driven product videos to strengthen your value proposition
- Instructional product videos to add value
Another fine example comes from Purple, in which they inject humor and benefits into their landing page video.
And of course, strong product images can say just as much as words. Because buyers can’t hold and feel your products, it’s important to provide enough high-quality images so they can fully grasp whether it’s right for them.
Hardgraft has mastered the art of stunning product photography, helping the visitor visualize owning it.
Arm yourself, Black Friday draws near
Traffic is wasted without compelling product descriptions. And Black Friday is lost without taking advantage of this unique time of year. Keep your ducks in a row and be well prepared at every turn.
Recapping product description best practices:
- Create buyer personas
- Do your research through online communities
- Reel them in with strong headlines
- Transform features into benefits
- Use bullet points
- Use relevant tone of voice
- Add urgency
- Engage with video and compelling images
Consumer emotions peak during the holidays, which causes them to make hastier purchase decisions. And considering most holidays evolved for commercial purposes, it’s surprising more merchants don’t know how to capitalize on them.
For Black Friday, standard product pages don’t always cut it. You need to showcase some WOW factor if you’re going for max conversions.
The best way to create urgency and excitement around your product is to use a dedicated landing page.
You could opt for click funnels for as much as $297 a month. Or use PageFly and build high-converting landing pages for as little as $9.95 per month. You can even make use of over pre-designed 50 templates like so.
Adding your products to templates takes as little as 5 minutes.
Advantages of PageFly:
- Optimized for search engines to load quickly and reduce bounce rate
- You get full control. Add and remove the content as needed
- Make use of high-converting PageFly elements like Countdown Timers, Review widgets and much more
- Functional and fluid across all mobile and tablet devices
- 50+ Shopify page templates for every niche and holiday
- Easily add custom code
PageFly templates are hands down the easiest way to:
- Strengthen the value proposition of your product
- Capitalize on holiday and seasonal sales
- Increase conversion rates
- Save time, stress and money
Compelling product descriptions in conjunction with customized pages can turn Black Friday into a holiday worth merchants getting excited over. Who doesn’t love life-changing conversion rates?
This is a guest contribution from Brendan Price. Brendan is a copywriter, content creator and CRO expert at PageFly, Brendan helps eCommerce merchants strengthen their branding, drive quality traffic and capture more sales.