Include ingredients in the product description

By Ilana Davis

Shopify just celebrated their 17th birthday and to celebrate they gave away Shop cash to be used on their Shop App. Their birthday gift was a great surprise for those who were able to snag Shop Cash.

I was one of those lucky ones and wanted to treat myself to a snack.

The only problem is that I have food restrictions that require me to look at the ingredients. It's not even weird restrictions. I just need the food to be vegan.

Looking through stores was painful and I eventually gave up.

The good news was that I found plenty of food that showed up in my search for "vegan variety snack". A closer look at the search result showed that Shopify was showing me all products that matched "vegan", "variety", or "snack". Not so good.

Shop App search result for vegan variety snack. Top left result is a keto bar that is not vegan.

That meant I had to open up products that looked good to see if they were actually vegan.

As it turned out, not all explicitly said they were vegan. So there was no way for me to know for sure which was a huge bummer.

If you sell food items or products where the ingredients may matter to your customers, make a point to call out these details.

  1. Use product badges for common terms like vegan, gluten-free, or nut free.
  2. List out ingredients in a bullet format or table.
  3. Call out common allergens

Cake Base bolds their ingredients list and includes a spot for common allergens with Contains and May Contain lists.

Pan's Mushrooms highlights ingredients and allergen information in their product description.

Some stores did include a picture of the product where the ingredients are shown, but most didn't. If you are going to include an image with the ingredients, make sure to include alt-text so that search engines will pick it up.

I recommend including the ingredients and nutrition facts in the product description rather than just the image. Google may pick up the content and award you with search enhancements depending on the query.

Again vegan foods aren't the only issue here. There are also those who need kosher, gluten-free, or nut-free to name a few off the top of my head.

There are folks who have allergies, health concerns, religious beliefs, or choose to eat whatever they want and they deserve to know what's in the food.

This advice doesn't just apply to foods. It can also apply to products that are applied to the body. For example, many who are gluten-free do so because they are celiac and cannot come into contact with any product that includes gluten.

As someone who looks at nutrition facts and ingredients, I beg of you, please include these details in the product description.


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