Should You Let Shopify AI Generate Your Product Descriptions?

Shopify recently introduced new AI tools which will write product descriptions for you. We take a look at how it can help, and should you even be using it?

Shell Robshaw Bryan
by Shell Robshaw Bryan
Posted in Shopify on January 24th, 2024

In 2023 AI dominated, with the media awash with stories about Chat GPT, Bing AI and more. Many marketers had a mini meltdown before taking stock and figuring out how they might effectively begin to incorporate AI into their workflows.

It’s been several months since Shopify introduced new AI tools, one of which will write product descriptions for you. So the question is, how can you leverage Shopify AI to improve what you’re doing and more importantly, should you?

Apart from your product images, it’s the descriptions that really do the talking and they operate double duty too, informing and persuading would-be customers whilst supporting your SEO efforts. 

What Is Shopify Magic?

Remember Clippy, the Microsoft ‘smart’ office assistant that did little more than drive us to distraction? Well Shopify Magic is something like that, only a million times smarter, infinitely more useful and something you’ll actually want to use.

Shopify Magic is designed specifically for eCommerce websites and will write product descriptions and more and it can be accessed directly on the product description page. This feature uses AI to create a product description based on some key details.

Look for the little star icon on the top left of the description editor, click on it and you’ll be prompted to enter some key information, a product title and keywords. You’ll also then get to choose a tone of voice, a feature we really love, which ensures the copy generated is right for your audience. 

Shopify AI Product Text Generator

That all sounds great right, but what’s it like to use in the real world? 

Using Shopify Magic AI Tool

We’ve spent plenty of time testing out the tool across a variety of different sites and have been able to identify the benefits as well as some of the limitations.

Sometimes there can many hundreds of product descriptions to be written on a new website, in which case utilising AI as a basic starting point, can remove some of the tedium.

Not only that, but it can provide you with different ways to describe something. This can be especially useful when you face a mental block trying to write descriptions for a collection of similar products.

In terms of SEO, Shopify Magic can do some of the basics, allowing you to work important keywords into your copy. Again, this can be useful when you fear repeating yourself or are struggling to work certain words or phrases into your copy in a way that reads naturally.

Once copy has been generated, if it’s not quite right, you can add further prompts and we’d strongly recommend playing around with the different tone of voice options until you find what’s right for your brand.

An example of Shopify AI in action.

Our favourite feature perhaps though is where we think Shopify AI really shines. We’ve all been there, we know what we want to say but we can’t quite manage to make the words flow in the right way.

Once you’ve written some copy and located a paragraph that doesn’t read quite right, you can select the text, then hit the little star icon and you’ll see new options present, our favourite of which is the “rephrase” option. Select that option and like magic, AI will revise your text. You can continue this process until the copy is rephrased to your satisfaction.

Limitations To Consider

Benefits aside, there are of course some limitations to consider too.

While AI can generate content quickly, the quality may not always match that of a skilled human writer, especially for complex or niche products.

Right now AI can do a great job of mimicking, but it can’t replicate a human and of course, no matter how much you tell AI about your products, it doesn’t know them or your audience like you do.

Consider too that AI in general isn’t great at understanding nuance – algorithms may not always understand the cultural or social implications of the language that they use. This could potentially lead to descriptions that are incorrect, misleading or even inappropriate for the intended audience.

We’ve found that some of the words AI uses just don’t hit the spot and feel somewhat off. From words and phrases that just feel over-used to the downright disingenuous. 

For example, when trialled for a fashion accessories brand, AI kept using phrases like ‘add a touch of colour’ and ‘add a touch of glamour’ and ‘for the perfect way to finish your outfit’ which just didn’t have the right tone, regardless of how much we tweaked our inputs.

Despite being instructed to produce content in English, the generated text consistently used US spellings, which meant any copy had to be thoroughly edited for a UK audience.

Which leads nicely to a conclusion. The Shopify product description AI tool is a brilliant addition to Shopify and it’s incredibly easy to use.

It serves as a useful starting point, aiding you in overcoming writer’s block and can provide fresh ideas for topics of discussion.

However, relying solely on AI for product descriptions will increase the likelihood of content becoming repetitive. It also risks not hitting the mark and failing to resonate with your customers but perhaps most importantly, the expert product knowledge and passion may fail to be fully conveyed.

Our advice then? Don’t be afraid to utilise Shopify AI which can be great for ideas generation and is a wonderful way to get started when staring at an otherwise blank page, but do ensure you’re not solely relying on AI alone for your content.

Want To Talk About Your Project?
Call Dan on 0845 301 1181, or contact us: