Product Pages – How important are they for e-commerce in 2015?

Product descriptions

Product pages have long been considered an essential element of any successful e-commerce strategy. But as with any sector that constantly develops and changes, there are bound to be some dissenters to challenge the rule. Some of these were present in a recent round of #EcomChat, a weekly Twitter-based chat centring around all things e-commerce.

Towards the end of March, the topic for #EcomChat was ‘Ecommerce Product Pages’, and the first question was, ‘Is the product page still the most important page on most e-commerce sites?’ For many of those business owners, marketers and copywriters involved in the discussion, product pages appear to remain a crucial aspect, but some weren’t so sure.

“So many influencers for this,” pointed out Paul Rourke (@paulrourke), “the increase in quick view & quick buy from category/lister pages, the cost of the product…”

Stephen@firstconversion also felt that product pages may have lost some significance, tweeting, “Do the basics right and product pages are standard. More important: Homepage re: branding & email capture re: lifetime value.”

The continuing role of the product description

It may be true that there are other factors involved in whether a visitor buys a particular product or not. But the fact is that for many types of e-commerce the product description fulfils the vital role of informing the customer about the product and convincing them of its merits. It is also a key traffic driver, and as @jamesgurd pointed out during the discussion, “the product page is often >50% of all page views.”

For Jason Dilworth @JasonDilworth56, the position of product pages within the e-commerce purchasing chain makes them particularly important. He tweeted: “visitors don’t see payment page without seeing a product, while a product page can be entry point. More important IMO”.

You can find a handy roundup of the discussions key points at Prwd.co.uk.

The value of quality product descriptions

Despite shifting e-commerce trends and wider developments across the web, product description pages continue to serve several vital purposes:

  • They provide useful and necessary information to customers
  • They give you a chance to differentiate your products from those offered by your competitors
  • They also provide a space in which you can express your brand’s personality through the style and tone adopted by your product copywriters
  • They enable you to get across the unique selling propositions (USPs of your product and your brand).

It may be true that for some types of products, ‘quick buy’ pop-up screens can provide all the information that a customer needs, but even these can of course be classed as product descriptions in their own right.

During the #Ecomchat discussion, Stuart McMillan @mcmillanstu suggested that e-commerce businesses should, “try stripping back as much as possible, de-clutter that page.” This may be prudent for some e-commerce businesses, particularly those for which the image of the product is an important factor, but for others offering more technical items, a little more detail may not go amiss.

The length of your product descriptions and the weighting they may carry in terms of overall importance in your online marketing strategy will vary from business to business; what is important is that you have well written product descriptions which are fit for purpose and which match the wider brand image that you are trying to convey. Product descriptions written by a professional copywriter are your chance to really let your products shine, and whether you consider them to be the most important link in the purchase chain or not, they are certainly a crucial one that cannot be overlooked.

Get in touch with Big Star Copywriting if you require the services of an experienced team of product copywriters who can handle large projects on time and within your budget.

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