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Optimized Product Descriptions That Don't Suck

Optimized Product Descriptions That Don't Suck

Hi everyone, my name is Eric Vasquez, and I have been optimizing product descriptions for Socksmith a few months now. I am grateful to them for the creative freedom in writing for their website, because so far they have been well received

Socksmith asked me to walk you through how I write their descriptions for success on your sites, which I would love to do.

Lucky for you I have one bulletproof, surefire way to write bomb product descriptions.


The bulletproof, sure-fire way to writing bomb product descriptions

Get an English degree and study poetry, get super into poetry (like annoyingly into it) and then perform slam poetry for a year or two (specifically on Tuesdays, specifically at a bar where the only crowd is the people performing).  Write a book of poems, then get into journalism and write breaking news stories like “Top Rave Clubs in the City: My First Go at All of Them.” Then learn SEO.

The method is bulletproof. Admittedly, that method also involves forcing yourself to enjoy whiskey.


For those of us with less time on our hands

Yes, I do have actual tips, the first being the quickest way to get more of a response from your descriptions.

  1. Embrace the Cheese

We are all lucky that our product is fun in and of itself. 90% of the work is already done when you have inspiration like these Study Buddy socks.

The final 10% is embracing your inner dad and make a joke. Here is the best part: it does not even have to be clever.

In fact, the cheesier the pun is the more human we come across in these descriptions. Finishing off with a tag like “that pun probably should have been avoided” brings out the human side of your store. The product description is no longer an AI generated optimized content enhancer; it is you talking to your audience.

The key here is that the joke itself is not important, but that someone took the time to write a cute little note for the reader. It is the difference between a reader and a customer. If you can imagine your potential customers reading dozens of computer-generated descriptions, yours triggers that human connection.

 

  1. On the Subject of Cute

Again, we are talking about socks here! Socks with little weenie dogs on them! Cats in boxes! Burgers and sunsets! When you (the writer) like a pattern let that excitement shine through your descriptions! What would you wear with that pair? Who would you give them too? Write it into the description as if you are telling your friend over the phone “I just got this cute pair of cherry socks…”

Here is a thought experiment: when writing descriptions, pretend as if you are sending the link to those socks to your friend. You send them the link, and then say what? “Look at how cute these are!” and Go on to talk about them. Use THAT energy!

 

  1. Wait! What about SEO?

My advice so far has been on writing quality product descriptions, but optimized descriptions are a whole other animal.

You are not alone if you kind of know SEO but not really. It is elusive, and diving into a Youtube learning session can lead you down some deep rabbit holes about semantic cocooning and keyword cannibalization.

For our SEO purposes, this is all you need to know:

  • Keywords – Broaden the specific product to “x socks.” That is your new keyword! Every time you mention the product (in sentences like “these socks” for instance) replace it with “these x socks.” It is the quickest way to ramping up SEO.

    • Note: keywords come from the mind of the Googler. What would you google if you were looking for your socks? Would you search women’s socks? Women’s crew socks? Cute socks with patterns?

  • Hyperlinks – Think of hyperlinks like threads in a spiderweb. Whether they link to outside sites or to other pages within your website, these threads build a bigger web to bring in more traffic. Also, the more references (hyperlinks) a site has, Google sees that site as a RESOURCE rather than spam (resources rank higher on Google, that’s why Amazon hold such a strong place for almost anything, their site links to all sorts of related pages off every search term).

    • I make sure to have at least one in a description. An easy hyperlink can be seen on these cat socks (that is also an example of making a keyword into hyperlink).

  • Meta Descriptions – A lot of confusion around these. These descriptions (found under the clickable part of a Google result) do not count towards SEO, but still hold importance. It is the preview of your site, and it is the make-or-break point for a user clicking on your website or the result below you. Exhibit A:

socksmith google result meta description

Something cute, but then an instant offer for free shipping. You best believe they are clicking through here!

Enough of SEO for now, here are some more general writing tips for you.

 

  1. Write your speaking voice

I blame academia for snuffing out uniqueness in our writing. Take a style that does not fit a research paper and scatter it on the page, and you have yourself a poem with breakthrough style. Soon that poem will be taught in classes where professors ask for proper essays written on the poem.

Long story short, trust your gut more by writing how you speak. It is that easy. In my opinion, a lot of blockage people face when writing for their businesses is that they are forcing proper form into an ultimately improper medium (dare I say, poetic medium).

I have one litmus test for whether you are using academic speak or your voice: write your description, then read it out loud. Does it sound like a conversation you are having with a friend, or does it sound like a thesis on corgi socks?

The more you read your writing out loud, the sharper your ear for your personal voice becomes (alternatively, you could also perform slam poetry, see tip number one).

This is strategy is your best bet, since it does not require you to learn a new writing style, but to listen to your own way of speaking and write through it.

 

  1. My last Piece of Advice

This is, I have to say, the easiest option for all of you writing sock descriptions out there. Even if the pattern is uninspiring, you can still get a great optimized product description by doing this one simple thing: contract me.

It is not always about ability or practice when writing descriptions, sometimes your workload demands energy elsewhere, not writing haikus about Jimi Hendrix socks. And for that, fellow sock enthusiasts, is what freelancers are for. 

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