When you know how to write badass product descriptions, you don’t just list a bunch of features. You engage the senses, capture the imagination, and inspire emotion. Amazon does them particularly well, but you’ll find plenty of excellent examples of companies that write badass product descriptions all over the Internet.
But what makes a product description badass? And how do you know if yours sucks?
Take a look at the product description above for Amazon’s Echo Dot. Pay careful attention to everything that’s going on in the screenshot.
- White space: There’s plenty of room to breathe between the images and copy.
- Humor: You’re ready to catch an Uber and order pizza with your new Echo Dot.
- Imagery: The photograph of the Echo Dot is on a plain background. It’s the only image in the screenshot, so it commands attention.
- Description: No superlatives or purple prose here. Just the facts, Jack.
- CTA: There’s a call to action with an obvious link.
You might also notice that Amazon knows its audience. Though the description isn’t loaded with too much tech-speak, there are enough geeky details to get relevant information across.
The Echo Dot product description illustrates the basics. You need to master them before you can get more creative with your own copy.
Moving Up in the World With Badass Product Descriptions
When you’re ready to step into the big leagues, you can take inspiration from badass product descriptions like this one from Cards Against Humanity.
I recently played Cards Against Humanity with my husband and some family members. I haven’t laughed that hard in months.
It’s not a family-friendly game. And if you’re easily offended, steer clear. You’ll notice that the manufacturers don’t shy away from that fact in the product description:
Cards Against Humanity is a party game for horrible people…[it’s] as despicable and awkward as you and your friends.
That gets your attention, right? It’s a unique brand of product description that might easily chase away people who wouldn’t find the game entertaining, but that serves as catnip to people (like me) who don’t mind offensive entertainment.
This product description also uses simple imagery and social proof (reviews from major media outlets) to become stronger.
What Makes a Product Description Work?
The most badass product descriptions surprise the reader. That’s it. They take a completely unexpected approach.
Compliment the Customer
Let’s say that you’re trying to sell a skirt. You want women to buy it. A traditional (and perfectly acceptable) product description might look like this:
Slip into this radiant maxi skirt to complete your comfortable and chic ensemble. The ankle-length design makes it ideal for all seasons, and the layered material adds dimension as well as color. This wardrobe staple goes with just about everything.
Like I said, perfectly acceptable. But badass? Not really.
We want to surprise the reader. So let’s change it up:
We’d love to take credit for this radiant maxi skirt and its popularity among women of all sizes and tastes, but it works because of you. Let your natural beauty and style shine through by pairing this understated wardrobe staple with anything else your closet contains. Its layered, supple material will delight your skin, but you’ll love your reflection in the mirror because the skirt brings out your best features while letting you steal the show.
I love adding customer compliments to product descriptions. If you can make people feel good, they’ll want to buy your product.
Tell a Story
People often understand product descriptions better when you can help them relate to the copy. A relevant story adds sophistication and interest to the description.
Maybe you’re marketing an Oriental-inspired living rug. Your copy could look like this:
Slip this all-wool rug under your furniture to instantly give a room a face lift. This Oriental-inspired rug features ornate patterns, gorgeous colors, and a durable finish that will hold up to heavy foot traffic. Plus, it’s the ideal focal point for any space in your home.
It’s…okay. I guess. But what if we told a story?
You’re tired. The boss kept you moving all day at work, the kids haven’t stopped fighting since you got home, and you burned dinner while attempting to answer your phone and help with homework at the same time. Then you sit down in your living room, slip off your work shoes, and dig your toes into the soft, warm fibers of this Oriental-inspired rug. Not only does it offer a treat for your toes, but it lends a sophisticated air to the space that makes you feel pampered and appreciated. That’s what you deserve, right?
In this example, I’ve set up a story that hits on pain points. Most people know what it’s like to come home after a long day of work. They can relate.
Then I positioned the product as the solution. It’s a little far-fetched, I grant you, but it illustrates a point.
Badass product descriptions often come from one of the most natural things in the world: Storytelling.
Use a Metaphor
My last tip for you is to turn your product description into a metaphor. Help your prospective customers relate to the product by comparing it to something else — even if it’s a little out of left field.
We’ll start with a generic product description for…let’s see…how about an online course?
This self-help online course will teach you how to find balance between work, family, friends, hobbies, and self-care. In 10 videos, 8 quizzes, and 12 journal prompts, we’ll work through the best ways for you to find balance in your life and to feel more whole no matter what your pursuits.
Again, pretty generic. Let’s up the ante with a metaphor.
A rock balances precariously at the edge of a cliff, just barely withstanding the wind that would have it topple into the canyon below. That’s how many of us feel these days, but it doesn’t have to be that way. Restoring balance to your life means moving away from the ledge and into a more comfortable space. Use this online course to identify your priorities, learn how to take care of yourself, and align yourself with your daily pursuits.
See what I mean? We can picture that rock on the cliff’s edge and feel the tension and anxiety. Relating it to how we might feel on a daily basis creates an innate need for the product we’re selling.
When you write badass product descriptions, you help customers look at a product in a new light.
Can you enliven your prose with storytelling, a metaphor, or surprising verbiage?
Can you shock, entertain, or connect with your prospects?
Can you surprise readers by taking your product description in an unexpected direction?
Of course you can. And that’s how you sell more products.