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Tips for writing content on an e-commerce website

When you are setting up an e-commerce website, good written content is unlikely to be high on your list of priorities, you will have your product/service to worry about, the technicalities of setting up the website and then marketing and advertising campaigns.

But written content is absolutely crucial to the success of your e-commerce site and you can’t afford to underestimate this.

The main aim of your website is a high conversion rate; ie. how many site visitors can you convince to purchase your product or service? Meanwhile, browsers who find your website have their own aims, either to purchase directly from you or to carry out research. What you need to do is balance your aim with those of your visitors.

Product descriptions

Whilst an image or video speaks a thousand words, customers on e-commerce sites need detail and specification, they also need information on options and variations that a simple image might not supply. So your product descriptions are key to your conversion rates.

A product description needs to highlight the USP of your product or service, it needs to describe stock and delivery details, when or where the item/service can be used and how many sizes/colours/materials options there are. In terms of specifications it is important that you do your research and ensure all your relevant details are present and correct.

Your text needs to be unique and include some keywords that people would put into a search engine, but don’t be repetitive with their use and don’t be clumsy with how you shoehorn keywords in, as this will be picked up by search engines and your site could be penalised.

Catching the eye

Your content needs to be direct, catchy and to-the-point. People’s attention span online is notoriously much shorter than it is elsewhere. So you need to grab them immediately, don’t use flowery language or jargon, and highlight your USP early in the text, not at the end. Equally, your content should not be too long. Stick to the facts and do not boast about your product/service, people are put-off by OTT sloganeering and it is far better to build a genuine brand image based on repeat traffic and satisfied customers.

It is important to use descriptive subheadings in your content. This will break up a chunk of text which can be off-putting to read, and will help drag a reader in. People tend to ‘scan-read’ text online, particularly when researching an item or subject, and therefore, good subheadings can catch the eye and ensure a reader is taken directly to the part of the text they need.

Customer reviews

Some of the best content you can get on an e-commerce site are customer reviews, so make sure you encourage these. Customer reviews are free and unique content, and statistically it is proven that conversion rates are much higher for products/services that have plenty of good reviews, as people develop more trust based on the independent opinions and comments they generate.

In summary, the most important tip to remember when producing content for your e-commerce site is the conversion rate. You wouldn’t try and engage a customer in a shop with thirty minutes of bluster on a vaguely-related subject and expect them to buy your product. On the flipside, if you gave them very little information or ignored them, they would walk out of the shop.

Online selling is much more competitive, but the rewards are there if you engage people and provide precisely what they need. You can achieve exactly that with great, written content.