Amazon bullet points are not just an important element of a successful listing.
They are the MOST important element.
You can go on about your titles and your product descriptions all day long – the bullets are where it's at.
The bullets, officially called 'Key Product Features', are your primary selling opportunity. These are where you go beyond the what of your product and explore the why.
They provide you with your first genuine opportunity to connect with your buyers and communicate your brand's personality. They are where you first tell them: 'I am a seller you can trust.'
Sales are won and lost in the bullet points based on decisions made in nanoseconds by rushed shoppers with a world of products at their fingertips.
But… apparently not a lot of Amazon sellers know this.
That's why the marketplace is littered with bland one-word bullets (or the opposite – lines and lines of keyword-stuffed nonsense).
I love writing bullet points. There's a simplicity and straightforwardness to them that most sellers do not seem to understand. Most sellers either ignore them completely or try too hard – both results miss the mark.
A set of five strong bullet points will provide structure to your listing, a base upon which to build your compelling product description.
In short, those five short bullet points are some of the most powerful sales tools in your Amazon arsenal.
Don't waste them.
Why Bullet Points Really Matter
Let's look at how people shop on Amazon.
They mostly go to the search bar and type in what they are looking for, producing a list of products to choose from.
- They see your image and it looks good
- They read the title, and it describes exactly what they want
- They click
Until this moment, they only know the most basic details about your product (brand, model, size, colour, etc.).
The title is very much a descriptive element. The answer to 'what is it?'
The combination of the title and the image draw buyers in. ('Ah, this is a frying pan, and it's non-stick, and it looks ideal. I'll check it out!')
But they are not going to go straight to the 'Add to Cart' button. Not yet. First, they click on your listing to find out more.
And the bullets are where they look.
That's where you have to SELL your product.
The bullets are nearly always the first piece of information presented to the customer. (I say nearly because the Product Description shows up first on mobiles, for some reason.)
There's a very good chance that, if you don't meet the needs of the buyer in the bullets, they'll move on. Sometime's that's inevitable – if they are looking for a small puppy collar and you only sell large dog collars, no amount of persuasive language is going to convince them to spend their good money.
The primary function of the bullet points is to clarify the details of what you're selling. To tell the buyer what it DOES.
The name is the giveaway: Key Product Features. That's what they are, features. Right?
Yes, but… they are so much more than just features.
Really good bullets go one step further. They say why the features matter.
That, believe it or not, is often the simple difference between bullet points that are OK and bullet points that are a slam dunk I-can't-get-my-wallet-out-soon-enough success.
Shortly, we'll be looking at some real bullet points to see how well sellers are doing this, which will help you to improve your own copy.
But before we move onto the examples, here are some quick learn-in-2-minute rules that will immediately improve your bullets and make sure you avoid the mistakes 90 percent of sellers seem to fall into.
8 Quick Rules for Bullet Point Success
OK, let's race through these. Here are eight things that you can and should be doing to make your bullets more effective.
1. Use all 5 bullet points
Always do this.
Amazon states in its style guides that three good bullets are better than five weak ones. I see the logic there, but I disagree.
Three good bullets and two weaker ones are better than three good bullets and nothing.
As long as they are not truly terrible bullet points that make buyers click away in disgust, you're surely better adding them (for the sake of using more keywords if nothing else).
And you know what? You can ALWAYS find something to add.
I have written well over 100 listings. These range from feature-heavy tech products like laptops to not-so-feature-heavy products like flower pots.
But I'll tell you something: I have never struggled to find five good features for any product, no matter how basic.
Quite the opposite – I'm nearly always left struggling to decide which details to leave out. When you have just 100 characters to fill (in some categories), filling that space up should not be the problem.
2. Use your keywords
There are two places where you want to make sure you use your main keywords: the title and the bullets.
If you've done your research thoroughly, you'll have a good selection of keywords in a list ranging from the most important to the least important.
Use as many of them in your title as you can without turning it into a keyword-infested mess.
Once you've used these keywords in your title, you don't need to use them again in your bullets. Instead, use the next most important keywords, and try to get as many in as you can.
I won't lie: this is tricky. You've got to provide details about what your product does AND compel the shopper to buy AND use your most important keywords.
But it's important to get it right, so spend some time finding ways to slot in your keywords and make them natural.
3. Pack in the power words
Power words are what you need to give some added punch to your bullets and make them sell.
This does not mean using sales words like 'special offer', 'free', 'discount', etc. They may well be effective ('free' is one of the most important sales words ever invented), but they could get your listing suppressed or worse.
Power words are usually verbs and adjectives that spruce up your copy. At their simplest, they are individual words that you can use in place of lots of words. Not only do they sound stronger and more compelling, but they also save precious space.
e.g. 'Make your muscles stronger' = 'strengthen your muscles'
Seek the best word or words to communicate your idea. Once you've written out the first draft of your bullet point, see how you could shorten it without cutting out any crucial information.
e.g. 'The knife provides you with the ability to cut faster because of its sharp blade' = 'Super-sharp blade cuts faster'
Look out for prepositional phrases. For example, 'of the' is often overused.
e.g. 'The handle of the knife is sharp'
'The knife's handle is sharp'
Don't use wishy-washy words like 'best', 'high-quality', 'state-of-the-art'. Give specifics instead. Why are you saying your product is 'high-quality'? What makes this true?
Otherwise, these words are just taking up space. They don't mean anything on their own.
I enjoy shortening sentences and combining them. I challenge myself to see how short I can make the bullets while still getting all the key points across. Try and do the same.
4. Feature + benefit = effective bullet point
Here's a simple tip for writing great bullet points every time: write the feature followed by the benefit.
This is copywriting 101, and you can't go too far wrong with it.
Product: Plant pot
Feature: Hole in bottom
Benefit: Allows water to drain, keeps plant healthy
Bullet: 'Drainage hole in bottom of plant keeps plant in better health'
Feature: Made from stainless steel
Benefit: Doesn't rust outside
Bullet: 'Stainless steel design protects from rust all year round'
Amazon actually recommends doing this:
It's not rocket science. But so many listings don't do it!
That gives you a great opportunity to make your product stand out, to convince buyers to choose your product and convert them into customers.
What if the feature-benefit format starts to sound too samey? Mix them up. Start some with a benefit and follow with a feature.
A simple way to do this is to use verbs to start each bullet. Imperative form verbs make this really easy.
e.g. 'Travel further for longer with this lightweight rucksack'
Simply tell the buyer to do something and then tell them why your product makes this possible.
This is actually my preferred option. Not only does it add impact, but the buyers see the benefits first (which is what the bullets are really all about) AND they are easier to write.
For more on this, see Step 2 in this excellent guide by Henneke Duistermaat. It's not about Amazon, but it's got some valuable guidelines on bullets that you can adopt in your listing.
And while we're mentioning good bullet point guides, check out this one on Grammarly, another good overview of writing better bullets in any format.
5. Talk directly to the buyer
It sounds like an obvious point, but many sellers get this wrong.
Who buys kids toys? Their parents. So highlight safety features.
Who buys a diamond ring? The one doing the proposing. Highlight how your partner will be gobsmacked when they see it.
If your product is something people buy for other people, talk to them instead of the person who will use it.
6. Stick to 100-150 characters maximum
The length of each bullet point varies by category, so be careful here. The maximum space available is 500 characters per bullet. (Here's that screenshot again, this time with the 500-limit highlighted:)
This blog post on Vertical Rail recommends using up the 500-character limit, but I have to disagree with that point. It's a great post, but I honestly think you should use enough to get in your keywords and make your point and then stop.
Honestly, 500 characters are way too many. Some product categories restrict each bullet to 100, but even if they don't, aim to keep your bullets somewhere under 200 characters.
100-150 is actually my preference. At this length, you really have to think carefully about what goes into each bullet point, making for more condensed and impactful copy.
The bullets are also easy to scan at this length.
If you have the option to write bullets longer than 100 characters, don't ramble on just to fill up space. But do make use of the extra limit to pack in anything of value and use more keywords.
7. Clarify how your product is different
Is there something that makes your product stand out? This is the place to say it. Don't be shy – make a big thing about it! That means make it the first bullet point so no one misses it.
Bundling a product? This should definitely be the first point you make. Amazon actually states this.
And remember that the bullets should be about your product and its benefits, not about your brand. Many sellers use the bullets to talk about themselves. But guess what? No one cares.
Use style and word choice to reveal your brand personality, but always focus on the product.
8. Don't break the rules
Bullet points that are not on Amazon have their own rules. (This post by Laurie Cunningham on The Writing Habit has some great tips on this.)
But remember that Amazon has its own way of doing things. Some of the main rules to keep in mind are:
- Avoid sales language like special offers, free giveaways, etc.
- Break up sentences using semi-colons; even better, write the bullets so you don't need to break them up at all
- Don't mention shipping information
- Don't use punctuation at the end (like a full stop)
Yes, lots of sellers break the rules – like this one I came across today:
It's all about how it's the only authentic product, and it has nothing about the product apart from a bit in the last two points.
This is actually a bestseller, which is a good example of when not to copy other products selling well.
The only rule I regularly break is the one against using ALL CAPS. It's usually best to avoid writing in all caps, but with longer bullet points of up to 200 characters, it sometimes helps to make the key point at the start of each bullet point stand out.
But don't just capitalise the first letter for the hell of it. It should either be a benefit (e.g. 'SAVE TIME by always using…') or a feature (e.g. 'METAL FRAME for longer-lasting…')
And Some Bonus Tips If You're Struggling…
If you're really having trouble making your bullets sound compelling, here are a few bonus tips to make it easier.
1. Provide essential information
Benefits are always good to use – but writing them is hard, especially when you have a limited amount of space.
If you're finding it hard going, just focus on the basics. Include what's included in the pack, dimensions, material, care instructions, etc.
This blog post on GoDataFeed has some great information on some areas you can choose from depending on the product.
2. State how it's used
List the different situations that your product is used in and paint a picture for the buyer. Even just a basic description of the various ways people use your product is enough.
E.g. For a galvanised steel flower pot: 'Use as a wedding decoration, planting herbs, restaurant cutlery holder.'
3. Focus on who you're targeting
Who is your product targeting? If you are targeting different types of customer, mention them.
E.g. For a small ironing board: 'Used by students, people living in small apartments, retirees, travellers.'
4. Answer the questions you would want to know
Put yourself in the position of the buyer. You are looking for the product – what would you want to know?
Then answer them – and you've got your bullets.
Customers are hesitating at this point. They have doubts. They are unsure whether to hand over their money.
Give them the assurance they need.
5. Don't copy other listings (even the bestsellers)
For the simple reason that most of them are doing such a bad job. This guide on Splitly is all about writing listings, and Point 3 makes the good point that you should not be fooled by your competitors.
Just because a product is selling well, it doesn't mean it's making lots of money.
Create a better listing, with more compelling bullets, and take sales from them.
Bullet Points Review: Learn from These 5 Listings
All of the following are generally good examples of bullet points. I didn't want to go searching for truly bad examples. Instead, I decided to focus on listings that get it nearly right.
So if you see your own product here, consider it a compliment.
1. Kids' Hydration Pack
The CamelBak Kids Hydration looks like a great little product. Here's what the bullet points look like:
In general, I really like these bullets. They're short, to the point, follow Amazon's guidelines for the most part, and most of them follow the tried-and-tested 'Feature-Benefit' format.
The bullets are also short and easy to scan, which I like. This guide on Salesbacker provides detailed info to optimising product descriptions, and Point 2 is all about making bullets 'skimmable'. Well, these are certainly easy to skim.
In Bullet 1, I like the '20% more water per sip' claim, even though I'd like to know what this is compared to. And while I would say that 3 features in 1 bullet is too much, here they have kept it very minimal and included benefits to make every word count. Good job.
Bullets 2 and 3 are also good. They both feature a clear feature and benefit, and you can't complain with that.
Feature: Breathable air mesh back panel
Benefit: Lightweight, comfortable fit
Feature: Reflective accents
Benefit: Visibility in low-light environments
What would I change?
I would consider using CAPS to start each bullet, though not necessarily. I would also switch some of them around to see what it sounds like with the benefit followed by the feature.
e.g. Bullet 3: 'Enjoy excellent visibility in low-light environments with reflective accents'
I would also consider adding some more personality to the bullets.
This is certainly not something you must always do. But I do feel that it can help your product to stand out.
Let's look at Bullet 3 again. How about we change this to:
'Safety comes first with kids, so the reflective accents boost visibility when the light's low'
That says: we understand you. We know what matters to you. Rather than just stating the feature and the benefit, you bring it to life.
Why is this important?
Because otherwise you are just another generic product. In competitive niches, you need to stand out, and your branding is one of the main ways to do that.
Check out this blog post from Splitly. At the end, it highlights some of the main points when selling in the Sports & Outdoors category, stating: 'Branding is the only thing that’s differentiating you from thousands of similar looking products.'
I couldn't agree more.
Finally, Bullet 5 is probably the weakest. There's nothing massively wrong with 'Safety whistle built into sternum strap', but I would change it to:
'Help is only a whistle away with the plastic safety whistle built into the sternum strap'
'Never get lost with in-built safety whistle, perfect for hikes, treks, and family adventures'
Again, that brings it to life and helps bring out the personality of the brand.
2. Walk-Through Gate
The Regalo Easy Step Walk Thru Gate is ranked No. 5 in the 'Baby' category. So what does it get right with its bullets?
These are not bad bullet points. I like the CAPS at the start, the benefits are there, but… it's all a bit ordinary.
I'm sure they could make these sound more compelling with a few simple changes.
Look at Bullet 5, which is probably the weakest. 'SAFETY' is the main word here, which is not great on its own – and the bullet ends up talking about pets. It's trying to cram in way too much.
Let's try to rewrite this. How about:
'SAFETY LOCK prevents baby from getting out while making it easy for you to get in'
'Keep baby out of harm's way with simple and secure safety lock'
Apart from that, I don't have many issues with these bullets. If I was looking for a baby gate, I'd want to know how wide it is, whether it's adjustable, how easy it is to enter, to put up, to take down – and these bullets include all the essential information.
Also, with over 8,000 reviews, this product has got some phenomenal social proof, which can sell a product almost on its own.
3. Dog Bowl
The Bergan Standard Dog Bowl is about as basic a product as you're going to get on Amazon. So how does the seller make it stand out?
There are not many obvious features to talk about with something as simple as a dog bowl. For many sellers, this makes coming up with the bullets hard work.
I actually like writing about these types of products. It allows for a bit more freedom to use personality and make it fun and more interesting.
In Bullet 1, the space is slightly wasted by including the full name and brand again. Space is tight, so use it wisely.
Also, I'm a bit unsure about 'Clean dining experience'. How so? Cleaner than eating off the floor, I guess? Perhaps it means the bowl is deep to prevent food spilling, but this isn't clear.
Bullet 2 is good, and it provides a great example of packing in the keywords and the benefits.
Bullets 3 and 4 are both good too. They mention food, water, dogs, cats, capacity – all questions buyers might have.
The final point is the weakest. The reason being it's all about the brand rather than the product. And 'To help you enjoy life with your pet' is weak.
I would rewrite these by getting rid of Bullets 1 and 5. I would then break up Bullet 2 into two separate bullets, and I would focus on the following 5 areas:
Point 1 – Durability of stainless steel
Point 2 – Aesthetics
Point 3 – Wide opening and base
Point 4 – Large capacity
Point 5 – For cats as well as dogs
I think that would cover all the main features, and I could then work on making each one sound more compelling.
4. Tumbling Composter
The HOTFROG Dual Body Tumbling Composter is the sort of thing I'd like to have in my garden. Let's check out the bullets:
The first thing you will notice about these bullets is that they are long. Too long, in my opinion. I'd stick to a maximum of half the length for each bullet and then fit anything else into the product description.
For example, I would rewrite Bullet 1 in under 100 characters as follows:
'EFFORTLESS MIXING: Unique tumble design and large openings make composting easy for beginners'
That actually covers most of the essential info in Bullets 1 and 2 in a fraction of the space. You could do the same for all of the bullet points and make it much easier on the eye and more compelling.
So while I like the language used and the information provided, I would love to take a pencil to each of the bullets and shorten them down without cutting out any essential details.
5. Skillet / Frying Pan
This Nonstick Hard-Anodized Skillet looks great. But how do the bullets look?
These are pretty good (up to the last point, at least). One glaring omission is the mention of the glass cover. Although mentioned in the title, I would definitely make a bigger deal out of this in the bullets.
Bullet 1 is a strong opener. 'Hard anodised is harder than stainless steel' – that's useful to know and makes it sound like a tough product.
The others are all fairly good and there is nothing hugely wrong with any of them.
One thing I noticed about the frying pans on Amazon is that they are all very similar. Sure, it's hard to make frying pans stand out from each other too much, but that's where branding comes back into it.
By adding some more personality, you can build a connection from the first word.
So, for Bullet 1 we could write:
'Extra durable anodised steel puts up with all your kitchen exploits and brings out your pro chef'
Bullet 2 could be:
'Quantanium nonstick interior means nothing sticks to this bad boy and cleaning up just got easier'
You get the idea.
Overall, however, these are pretty good.
Make Your Bullets SELL
With bullet points, you're trying to find a happy medium between a boring list of the features (e.g. iron, 12 cm, heavy-duty, etc) and a full-on hyped-up sales manual.
In short, you want to create bullet points that provide WHAT the buyer needs to know and WHY they are important.
Add a dash of personality to come across as a friendly and trustworthy business.
If you're struggling to do this, talk like a real human being trying to connect with another human being and you can't go too far wrong.
Picture yourself holding your product and talking to a complete stranger. How would you describe it?
You would talk about a feature ('This pan is non-stick'), but you would never stop there. Imagine them staring at you waiting for you to continue.
'This is great because the food never sticks while you're cooking, it makes cooking a pleasure rather than a chore, and then when it comes to cleaning up you can wipe away the food residue with a sponge.'
Once you've come up with something like that, edit it down. You'll always come up with something close to what you want.
Take your time over your bullets. Write out a first version of each one, then give it a day or so before coming back to it.
Edit it down. Read it from the point of view of a customer. Show it to a friend who might be your ideal customer.
Compare it to competing products, but don't copy them. Instead, make sure your product is better.
That's all you've got to do.
Sound Like Too Much Hard Work?
I write bullet points (and full Amazon listings) every day. If you're struggling, let me write yours for you.
I'll put together a stand-out listing for you that combines bullet points and all the other essential listing elements so you'll have a listing that works tirelessly day and night to make you sales.
Find out more here.