Ready to write a product review for your affiliate site?
I know, it’s tough.
You’re sitting in front of your computer, staring at a blank screen and blinking cursor. You’re scratching your head, wondering what you’ll say to your readers.
I mean, it’s not that you know nothing about the product you’re reviewing.
Maybe you’ve read tons of reviews about it. Maybe you’ve reached out to the support team with questions. Maybe you’ve even used it yourself.
The problem is, you have no idea what to say in your review.
- Exactly how do I write an affiliate product review?
- How do I structure my blog?
- Where do I start, and what details do I include?
- Is it OK to talk about the negative sides of the product?
- How do I make readers interested in my review?
If these are questions you’re asking, you’ve come to the right place.
In today’s blog, I’ll give you a step-by-step guide to writing a product review from scratch.
Then, I’ll give you some best practices you can stick to your mirror (or laptop) so you always write engaging, polished, and interesting reviews.
Let’s dive in!
The #1 Reason You Should Write Product Reviews
As an affiliate marketer, your #1 goal shouldn’t be to make money.
It should be to help people decide which products are right for them.
However, when you build trust with your audience and they love the help you provide in their decision-making…
…you will make money.
And when you write product reviews, you basically hit two birds with one stone.
You see, product reviews are in-depth guides giving readers a sneak peek into what they’ll get if they decide to purchase such a product.
They’ll see the great and not so great stuff about a product.
They’ll see screenshots and learn how to use it best.
They’ll learn whether or not it’s for them.
All this leads them towards making a sound decision on whether or not to buy it.
OK, that’s bird #1: helping your audience.
Now, for bird #2.
Product reviews make you money.
Because people who read these reviews are already considering a certain product.
They’re warm leads in the center of the marketing funnel, ready to convert with a slight trigger from you.
It’s different when you write trust and authority blogs or “best of” blogs, because your readers will likely be here:
They want to learn how to do something or to find the “best product,” but they’re not exactly ready to buy.
However, when they search for a review on a product, they’re already this close to buying, and only need a little reassurance that it’ll be right for them.
They’re just one step away from conversion.
To recap, the #1 reason you should write product reviews is because they’re big sources of income.
You’ll be targeting people lower in the funnel and more ready to buy.
Also (which is even more important), you’ll be laying a product bare for your readers to see and experience, which will help them decide whether or not to purchase it.
Six Steps to Creating an Honest, Engaging Product Review
Ok, now for the fun part!
You already know product reviews will earn you a ton of money, plus make your readers love you…
…so let’s get into the nitty gritty of writing one.
Here are six steps to follow for a helpful, honest, engaging review.
Step #1: Look into the Keywords
All right, I know what you’re thinking.
“You’re a keyword junkie.”
If so, you’re right!
But the truth is, it’s not only because I love keywords.
It’s also because targeting the right keywords gives us a strategic map to success. It removes the guesswork and frustration, and takes us straight to our goal.
So remember this.
Before writing your product review, make sure it’ll show up on Google.
And don’t worry.
You don’t need to be a SEO guru to figure this out.
All you need is a simple, user-friendly tool like KWFinder.
This tool is the most affordable around, and you can get it for as low as $29.90/month.
Want to test it? Go here to begin your 7-day FREE TRIAL. You can cancel any time before your trial ends without spending a single cent.
Now, here’s a brief guide on finding out if your review has the chance to rank on Google.
Simply type your keyword idea into KWFinder’s search field.
Let’s say you want to review Audio Technica ATH-M40x.
Type “Audio Technica ATH-M40x Review” into the search field, and you’ll get data like this.
As you can see, this keyword has a KD score of 27 and a search volume of 1,000 per month.
Should you go on and write the review?
They keyword has a KD score of below 40, which means it’s not impossible to rank for, even if your site is new.
It also has 1,000 searches per month, which means there are a ton of people interested in buying the product.
See how a keyword research tool is essential when writing product reviews?
It’s not just geeky stuff.
It’s your escape from spending a ton of time and energy writing blogs that’ll get you nowhere closer to your goal of becoming a successful affiliate marketer.
Step #2: Craft a Mouthwatering Headline
Now that you’ve picked your primary keyword, it’s time to dive into the writing part of your review.
Remember, there are a ton of reviews out there.
You don’t want to publish another generic, unhelpful, salesly piece.
You want to stand out and really help your readers reach the best decision for them.
Which means, you want to direct these readers to your review.
To do that, you need an attention-worthy headline.
You can just state the facts and type in “Audio Technica ATH-M40x Review.”
If you do, you’ll likely still get readers.
But if you want to beat out your competitors and be the one who gets the most clicks on the SERPS…
…you’ll want a magnetizing headline.
Here are three tips to improving your headline:
- Add an intriguing parenthesis
- Build curiosity with a catchy subtitle
- Give your audience a sneak peek into your review
The bottomline: get creative.
Stand out on those SERPs.
Step #3: Begin with Intrigue
Your headline can only go so far towards pulling readers into your blog.
After that, it’s up to your hook and introduction to draw them further in.
Don’t write a boring intro.
Imagine a bored, uninterested guest at your party.
What do you say to keep them from leaving?
“Want another drink?”
I don’t think so.
You’ll say something to jolt them awake. Something different from what everyone else is saying.
The same is true with your review’s introduction.
You don’t want to put your readers asleep with the same old “I’m going to review X today.”
Instead, you’ll want to tell them something they haven’t heard before.
You’ll want to:
- Jolt them awake with the main promise/claim of the product
- Get them interested with a sneak peek into your opinion of the product
- Foreshadow what your review will cover (in an interesting, catchy way)
Here’s a product review introduction that covers all these tips.
Step #4: Give a Sneak Peek into the Product
Now, it’s time to dive into the meat of your review.
You’ve already pulled your audience in with your title and introduction…
…so it’s time to fulfil the promises you made and help them with their decision-making.
The first step is to give a little introduction on the product you’re reviewing.
In this part, you can add anything that’s interesting about it.
You can go into details such as exactly what the product is and does, what people are saying about it, who created it, its claims, and so on.
Here’s an example.
Step #5: Lay the Product Bare
This section will take up the largest part of your review.
This is where you take a deep dive into your product and show your readers exactly what it does, what they’ll experience when they use it, and the pros and cons of using it.
Now, to start, you can give your audience a TL;DR, or shortened version of your full review.
This is for people who are 99% convinced to buy it, and only want a tiny push from you (a person they trust).
Here’s what a summary looks like.
Remember, add your affiliate link after this section, so people who decide to stop reading here and buy don’t need to scroll down (or worse, leave the page) to make the purchase.
Or, you can add a teaser and instruct readers to scroll to the bottom of the page to sign up. (Like in the above example.)
Your goal here is to make it simple for readers to purchase the product if and when they’re ready.
Now, for the main part of your review: the pros and cons section.
If you’re like me, you’ll want to mention the pros of using the product first.
Add in a headline or get creative and style the pros into an image with bullet points.
The way you talk about the pros depends on you.
You can be brief (like in the example above) and simply flesh out the main benefits of the product and the reasons your audience will love it.
Or, you can go more in-depth. You can talk about your experience using the product, highlight each thing you love about it in a separate section, and make readers feel that they’re actually using the product themselves.
Better, you can do both!
You can take a deep dive into each advantage with a separate heading and section, then summarize at the end with a bulleted list.
…now for the hard part.
Right after the “pros” section, you’ll need to list the “cons.”
Note: some people like listing the “cons” first, so they end on a more positive note.
My opinion is, it really depends.
Yes, you can make people feel discouraged at the end of the review by listing the cons of using the product.
BUT…you can also turn them off right away by making them feel negative at the beginning of your review. (Which is more likely, if you ask me.)
What it really depends on is how you write and how honestly you talk about the product you’re reviewing.
Also, how well you know your audience. (More on this later.)
Now it’s time to write about the cons of using a product.
Remember, tread carefully here.
You don’t want to insist a product doesn’t have any cons. (Every product has cons, and your readers know it.)
But also, you don’t want to come off as too negative, and scare people away.
You want to be balanced, honest, and (if possible) positive.
As with the pros, you can do a long version with a separate section for each, stick to a simple bulleted list, or both.
Step #6: End with Clarity
Like with all blogs, end your review with a conclusion.
However, a product review conclusion is slightly different.
In it, you’ll want to go back through everything you talked about in the blog, including the pros and cons you discussed.
If it’s your style, a bulleted list or graphic will work great.
Then, give your final verdict.
Is the product worth the price? Should your audience buy it? Who is it for, and who isn’t it for?
Here’s an example of a great conclusion.
Plus, it has this table at the end, which helps your audience visualize what they just read.
3 Proven-and-Tested Tips on Writing Powerful, Polished Product Reviews
Ok, so now you’re ready to write your product review!
You already have the step-by-step on how to write it, plus exactly what you can add to make it helpful and interesting.
Now, the question is: how do you fine tune and polish your product review?
Here are three tips to help you.
- Research Till You Drop
If you ask me, people shouldn’t review products they haven’t actually used.
On my blogs, I never recommend anything I haven’t tested personally.
Still, you can write a review without using a product (it just won’t be as good).
Either way, you’ll need to do extensive research before writing your review.
You’ll want to find out:
- The product’s history (to spice things up)
- Details about the product other reviews don’t mention
- Tips and hacks for using the product better (if possible)
In other words, whether or not you’ve actually tried the product, you want to be the expert on it.
You want to know every tiny detail about it, so you gain your audience’s trust.
And speaking of audience, you’ll want to get to know them too.
You’ll want to find out where they are right now, what they want to achieve with the product, and what they’ll like or dislike about it.
For instance, in the example above, one of the cons listed was that CMC (Content Marketing Certification) doesn’t provide a roadmap for scaling to six figures.
However, if you know your audience and that they’re just getting started and want to land a paying gig, no matter how small…
…you know that this “con” won’t be enough to deter them from signing up.
- Strike a Balance Between Pros and Cons
I hinted on pros and cons earlier, but I’ll mention them again here.
That’s because striking a balance between them can seem tough for beginners.
You don’t want to make your audience feel that you’re “taking sides” or overpromoting a product just to earn the extra buck.
But also, you don’t want to discourage them and scare them away from buying.
The answer to this dilemma is balance.
If you love the product, lavishly praise its pros.
Openly talk about its cons, but add encouragement when things get too negative. For instance, if you’re writing a KWFinder review and don’t love that it’s not an all-in-one SEO tool like Ahrefs…
…add that if your readers are beginners, they won’t need to perform in-depth site audits, and will likely spend too much and never use the extra features if they go for a pricier, more sophisticated tool.
Another rule to remember: list more pros than cons.
This always works.
- Make Your Audience Feel that Your Product Review is the “Free Trial” of the Product
Take your audience “inside” the product.
Show them screenshots.
Tell them how it works.
Teach them how to use it.
Make them feel that they’re giving it a “test drive,” so when they decide to buy, they’ll know exactly what they’re getting.
Here’s a great example:
How to Write a Product Review: The #1 Rule to Remember
The truth is, writing a product review isn’t hard.
Yes, there are things to remember, like balancing pros and cons and knowing your product like the back of your hand.
But when it comes down to it, it’s simply like telling a good friend about something you love.
That’s why my #1 rule is this:
I’ve mentioned this a couple of times in this blog, and I mean it.
Be honest, do your best to help your audience make the best decision for them, and follow the guidelines in this blog.
In no time, you’ll be writing popular product reviews like a pro!
All screenshots taken by the author, August 2021.