Will re-writing your product descriptions improve search rankings?

One of our blog readers emailed us recently for some advice. He purchased a poorly operated eCommerce store and felt that one of the things causing a problem, was that all the product descriptions were copied from the original manufacturer. He felt like this with damaging the Google search rankings and therefore, losing potential sales.

Duplicate content has always been considered a sin if you wish to have high search rankings, but does this apply when it comes to eCommerce?

In general, eCommerce stores aren’t considered ‘high written content’ websites. This means that unlike other written content driven websites, they don’t need (or will not benefit) from each product page having 10,000 words written on them. When people are browsing for a product to purchase, they are looking for everything simplified.

They want reviews. They want product images. They want to know a price. A good product description is just enough to explain the features and not too much more. Heck, bullet point descriptions are usually something shoppers love, rather than large paragraphs.

One mistake that a lot of eCommerce owners make, is taking the product description given by the manufacturer and just throwing that on the website without any consideration. However, whilst I personally say this is one of the worse things you can do…

It’s not an a major problem in regards to ranking your website in Google. In fact, Google have admitted this themselves.

What they essentially say in the video/tweet above, is that product descriptions should not be something you’re focusing on, if you’re having problems with your eCommerce store ranking. Product descriptions aren’t going to make your website win.

There are more important things that you can focus on that will have more impact. If other stores are beating you in the war of search rankings, the competitors are just doing a much better overall job in their store. Is your support the best it can be? Do you have the product lines that people want? Do you have all the best security and payment protocols in place?

Factors like these, factors that customers care about, are things that will ultimately aid you in ranking for the keywords you want.