Quick Tips for Creating a Great Description for Your Online Store or eBay Item

Writing a good description of the items you sell online can mean the difference between success and failure. There are many ways you can improve your description, by using the right tone, knowing how much information to include, and making your text easy to read.
A concise description of a silver dollar for sale.
You can write a magnificent description, by using this list of suggestions:
  • Write a factual description. Carefully describe the item, stating every fact you know about it. Avoid the use of jargon, and answer almost any question a potential buyer might ask.
  • Accentuate the positive. Be enthusiastic when you list all the reasons everyone should bid on the item. Unlike the title, the description can take up as much space as you want. Even if you use a photo, be precise in your description — tell the reader, for example, the item’s size, color, and fabric.
  • Include the negative. Don’t hide the truth of your item’s condition. Trying to conceal flaws costs you in the long run: You’ll get tagged with bad feedback. You also don’t want the buyer to send back your merchandise because you weren’t truthful about imperfections or modifications. This type of omission can lead to a fraud investigation.
  • Include some friendly banter. You want to make the customer feel comfortable shopping with you. Don’t be afraid to let your personality show! Think Infomercial!
  • Limit the number of auction rules (or terms of sale). Some sellers include a list of rules that’s longer than the item’s description. Nothing turns off a prospective buyer like paragraph after paragraph of rules and regulations.
  • Choose a reasonable typeface size. Many users are still looking at eBay on an 800 x 600 display. If you design your auctions at 1024 x 768, your typefaces may be way too large for the average user. Forcing a user to scroll leads to frustrated customers.
  • Quote a shipping amount. Many bidders pass up auctions that don’t disclose the shipping charges. Use eBay’s shipping calculator to give your customers a fair shake at the shipping costs.
  • Keep photos to a practical size. Many users still connect with a slow Internet connection, and if they have to wait more than a few seconds for your large pictures to load, they may go elsewhere for the item.
  • Be precise about all the logistical details of the post-sale. Figure out the costs of shipping the item and add those charges to your description. If you charge extra for shipping insurance in your online store, mention it as well.
  • Promote yourself, too. As you accumulate positive feedback, tell potential buyers about your terrific track record. Add statements like “I’m great to deal with. Check out my feedback.”
  • Be concise and to the point — don’t ramble! Too many people online these days drone on and on, causing prospective customers to have to scroll down the page several times.