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Nuts and Bolts: How to Write Product Descriptions

April 16, 2014

Artist’s Notes:
How to Write Product Descriptions that Pop

We’re talking using the Artist’s Notes field to include a product description on your cards. If you don’t know why, check out Nuts & Bolts: Artist’s Notes and Product Description and Nuts & Bolts: Uniqueness & Product Descriptions & SEO.  We’ll wait. Okay, ready? Let’s get started.

Today I’m going to explain to you how to write a product description that pops. Yes, there’s a trick to it. That trick is simple, and at the same time, can be a challenge. You don’t need special training to do it, or a degree, or a black belt in promotion, or any ninja stealth marketing skills.

The most important thing to remember is: write about the card as if you were describing it to a blind person. Search engines can’t “see” your image, but they can index your words, which is what you want.

That’s what it boils down to. Until you get used to the process, I suggest you take a good look at your card, and just jot down words that describe the design. Here’s an example:

Happy 80th Birthday for Mom – Robin Chaffin

These are the words I’d jot down to describe this card: pink, tulips, tag, gingham, button, swirls, painting, vine. That’s  also what I’d use in the keywords, among other things, so I’m killing two birds with one stone.

Now we can turn those random words into a description – for this card, in my Artist’s Notes, I’d say something like: “Celebrate your Mother’s 80th birthday with this pretty pink card with a delicate swirl pattern background, featuring a painting of potted tulips, and a scrapbook effect digital tag with gingham and button accent.”

A couple of things to keep in mind:

1) You have to be careful to avoid deceptive words like gold, glitter, lace, ribbon, etc. as shoppers may believe they’re getting a handmade card, or a card printed with metallic inks, etc. To prevent any misconceptions, use terms like digital, “look” – as in “silver look,” graphic – as in “graphically created glitter,” effect, and so on.

2) Whenever possible, include popular buzzwords in your description. In the example, I wrote “scrapbook effect” for a very good reason – scrapbooking (digital or otherwise) is very hot right now, and I can see that’s the effect Robin was going for in this card design. Just like keywords, it pays to do your research. Not sure how? Check out a previous Nuts & Bolts: Keywords for pointers.

Of course, your space is limited in the Artist’s Notes field, so don’t go completely berserk. If you find it helps, write your description first on a piece of paper or in Word, and tinker around with it until you’re satisfied you’ve ticked all the right boxes. Use GCU’s Uniqueness Tool, too. It’s a handy way to check your description against your other cards to be sure you aren’t getting repetitive.

And here comes a big no-no: Keep in mind this is a product description, not an opportunity to tell shoppers about you, the artist, or give any other irrelevant information. Sure, tell folks where you took that picture of the waterfall. That’s part of the description. But leave out the bit about how you were on a picnic that day, and you got stung by a bee, and took the picture as you were falling into the stream. It’s about the greeting card, not you.

It will take practice, but you’ll get the hang of it. In time, you may even find you’re having fun. Now get out there and start describing!

2 Comments leave one →
  1. April 16, 2014 5:54 pm

    MANY THANKS for composing the Artist Notes for this card! Most of my older cards have the same old “contact me for a custom card” message in the Artist Notes. I’ve gone back and rewrote many of them … usually when I’ve updated the look of the card; however, I just haven’t had the time to “put my thinking cap on” and write proper Artist Notes on all of them yet. This is one series I won’t have to think about! (Now, I just need to make a little time to tweek the front of the card for a more updated look.)

    Thanks again!

  2. April 26, 2014 10:20 am

    Thank you for the awesome tips. Since Ive been adding descriptive descriptions, and improving my perspective, colors, text, and so on, on cards, with the help of reviewers, (thank you all), I believe my sales have improved. As Robin stated with so many cards with ‘older descriptions’, I find it helps to start with upcoming holiday occasions months in advance so the search engines catch your cards in time for some great holiday sales! Thank you again, Ive learned so much from the GCU HOW-TO and TIPS!

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