How to Write Punchy Product Descriptions for your E-Commerce Business


Picture this: You’re weeks, or maybe days, away from a new product or collection launch…

Products? Indispensable.

Website? Dragged, dropped, done.

Gorgeous photos? Captured.

Messaging? Compelling as hell! 

Now you just have to…put your products on your site so people can actually PAY you! And all those pretty product photos need words to go with them so people know what they’re looking at.

Groan. Talking about yourself is hard, and talking about the products you’ve been living and breathing for months can bring on serious blank-page paralysis.

YOU know what’s awesome about your products, obviously. Unfortunately, folks don’t automatically know all that amazing stuff. You need to write punchy product descriptions to show them what they’ll get and why they need to hit that ”Add to Bag” button right now. Here are some strategies for writing product descriptions that make people say, “I want that!”

Keep it On-Brand

Make sure your product descriptions align with the tone you’ve set with the rest of your brand. If your overall brand tone is serious, upscale and comforting, cracking a crass joke in your product descriptions might not be the best call.

If you sell bidets like TUSHY, though, try not to take yourself too seriously. I didn’t write TUSHY’s copy, I just like their shoot-from-the-bowl attitude. 

Keep it Consistent

Product descriptions don’t have to be utilitarian. Businesses can use all kinds of formats for their descriptions, from fanciful global narratives with a singular voice like the J. Peterman Company (Seinfeld, anyone? Elaine Benes is my copywriting idol, okay?), to using haiku to sell WordPress themes and plugins like Automattic.  I personally used to love the product descriptions from ModCloth, before Wal-Mart bought them out (Boo!)

Choose a format for your product descriptions that’s informative, unique, and most of all, consistent. Make sure everything from the product name to the feature list is formatted and crafted the same way as your other products. Consistency is good for customers since they don’t get confused (a confused mind doesn’t buy!) and good for you because if all the product descriptions have a consistent format and tone, writing them becomes pretty plug-and-play!

Keep it Original

Obviously, I have a lot of feelings about product descriptions and what they lend to (or subtract from) a brand’s impact and user experience. It’s totally okay to take a note when you come across a brand whose product descriptions really make you want to buy. Take note of why: is the product something you need, and the description told you so?  Is the format something you’ve never seen before? Does the description make you want to be a better version of yourself (by buying this product)?

Maybe you’re like a recent client of mine and your target market consists of folks with a common pop culture interest.  Tread carefully when signaling to these customers with fandom references, in-jokes and quotes.

You don’t want your descriptions to read as if you’re riding the coattails of a successful brand, YOU want to be a successful brand!

Writing killer ecommerce product descriptions doesn’t have to be a headache. As long as your product language is on-brand, consistent and original, there’s nothing stopping your ideal customer from stocking up and checking out!

Struggling to write product descriptions for your business? Reach out and work with me to get people buying what you’re selling!

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