Audit Your New Store: 7 Rules for Writing Engaging Fashion and Apparel Product Descriptions

Audit Your New Store: 7 Rules for Writing Engaging Fashion and Apparel Product Descriptions

Your ideal customer has just landed on your website. They clicked on all the right CTAs along the way. They navigated successfully to the product information page. And they’re finally reading the product description for that brand new sports bra when BOOM. They exit. Every business owner’s worst nightmare.

For fashion and apparel business owners, there are certain must-have elements you need on a product information page that are important for conversion. Whether it’s a specialty clothing company with limited items or a large retailer that sells hats, shoes and everything in between, you’ll notice some common features that successful brands include on their product information pages.

Tuning up your product pages might consist of sourcing real testimonials, uploading great photography, and including a clearer call to action. But what many new clothing store owners don’t invest as much time and effort in is writing detailed, accurate, and engaging product descriptions.

A test on the usability of product information pages by Baymard Institute showed that every single user relied on the product description at some point during test sessions in order to determine how suitable the product was for their needs. Your customers are bound to read your product descriptions. Take this opportunity to help them make an informed decision.

Don’t worry — writing stellar product descriptions can become an easy task for any new clothing store owner. These seven rules will help enhance your product descriptions and ultimately engage your customers and persuade them to click that crucial “add to cart” button.

1. Write how your target customer thinks and talks

It’s easy to simply describe a product. But, to really stand out to your target customer, you have to go beyond the basics and write in a way that will not only relate to the shopper but inspire them to buy into your brand.

Take a look at this description of a Women's Cardigan from Old Navy:

Old Navy’s target customers are clearly young, professional, Insta-savvy females. Writing the copy in an informal and conversational tone gives it a fun, hip vibe. These customers want to imagine this item in their own lives, ya know?

So, when browsing for their fall wardrobe, a customer might read this product description and think “I love pumpkin spice, Netflix, and cozy cardigans. Old Navy understands the person I want to be.” Old Navy — you nailed it.

If you need more help determining who your ideal customer is and how you should be writing content for them, try building a persona.

A persona is a fictional, data-driven representation of one customer or a group of customers. You’ll need to project the demographic information of your customer like age, location and income, as well as psychographic information such as interests and inspiration.

The overall goal of building a persona is to help yourself or employees of your company think about how your customers think.

2. Pepper in some personality

The fun really starts once you’ve established your persona and narrowed down who your ideal customer is and how you should talk to them (talk = write).

Being in the fashion and apparel industry allows you to be über creative with your product descriptions. Why? Clothing isn’t just a commodity. It’s a representation. It’s an extension of one’s personality. Your description should be that too.

Check out this description for a pair of Men’s Bahama Wool Sneakers from Sperry:

Giving a product description personality in a way that’s funny, uplifting, edgy, motivational — you name it — will make the actual product relatable to your customer. It will take them from thinking “Those are nice shoes” to “I NEED those shoes in my life.”

The odd pun every now and then never hurt anyone either. Humour is a great way to add personality into your product descriptions (if it fits in with your brand and target audience, of course). It takes the pressure off of the sale and also gives you points for being cool.

3. Readability is really important

Studies show that 79% of readers on the Internet scan through web pages. Readers often pick out only a few headlines and sentences out of an entire landing page or product information page. That’s why the readability of your product descriptions is so important.

In most cases, when a customer lands on your product information page, they’re already interested enough to learn more about the item. But, when they scroll down to the product description, a big block of text might bore them to death, causing them to exit.

Your product description should include certain elements that help guide customers’ eyes and keep them engaged long enough.

Try formatting your product descriptions using these tips:

  • Have big, bold headlines
Catch the reader’s attention. This is another opportunity to get creative. Instead of using standard (aka boring) titles like “Product Description” or “Materials”, why not go for something more punchy, like Roxy did below:
  • Use short sentences

They’re easier to read. Shorter sentences are typically read in one’s head using a staccato rhythm, making copy much easier to follow. Almost like a children’s rhyme.
  • Break it up with white space and bullet points

Give the reader breathing room. List out your product’s benefits and features using bullet points. It’s an easy way to keep the description organized and easy on the eyes.

4. Dont write with typos or formating errrors

    You’re probably thinking “Duh”. But, admit it. The last time you’ve brushed up on your grammar skills was probably when dinosaurs roamed the earth.

    Correct spelling and grammar is such a small yet crucial way to make a company seem smart, legitimate, and professional. If a customer spots a typo or an error, it fuels their doubts that the product might have something wrong with it too.

    5. Don’t forget about the benefits and features

    It’s one thing to be fun and punchy with the copy in your product descriptions. But, you should still cover the benefits and features. That’s what the customer really wants to know at the end of the day.

    Shopping for clothing online can sometimes be tricky. A piece of clothing isn’t tangible anymore like it is at a physical store. Your customers can’t pick it up or try it on. When they’re shopping online, they rely solely on the photos and descriptions.

    So, a customer will want to know the specifics. Are the pockets on the jeans functional? Is the winter parka down filled, and if so, how much of it? Is the dress cotton or rayon? Or both? Highlight the details and answer any questions or doubts.

    6. Offer style advice

    You might as well. You are a fashion and apparel business, after all. Offering style advice is also a great opportunity to cross-sell your other products.

    Like Perry Ellis does with this Slim Fit Suit Jacket:

    7. Scrap the fashion jargon

    Unless you’re Chanel, or Gucci, or Prada, or any luxury designer, don’t bother including fashion jargon that most people won’t understand. Words like appliqué, epaulettes, and filigree. Remember, if you confuse them, you lose them!


    Nicole RosteckiNicole is a copywriter and creative brand strategist based in the Greater Toronto Area. She loves helping small businesses develop their voice and vibe through copywriting, graphic and web design, and photography. She has also been the word boss at some of the world’s largest ecommerce companies, such as Walmart Canada. She’s a typography enthusiast and a sucker for pretty stationery.