The Natural History Museum in Kensington, London, has a new online store.

It’s responsive, has chunky buttons and is easy to read. However, rather than provide a full review of the website (check it out for yourself), I wanted to highlight the brilliant copywriting.

Hopefully it’ll prove inspiring for your own product copy.

I’m going to look at a smattering of pages, highlighting how copy is fun, informative, true to the museum and SEO beneficial.

Scientifically correct copy

First of all, an important point and one you’d expect the NHM to cover. The product copy is scientifically accurate, by which I mean the ‘standing T. rex soft toy’ is not the ‘standing T-Rex soft toy’ or even the ‘standing T. Rex soft toy’.

The species name, rex, is lower case and the genus, Tyrannosaur, is always capitalised and can be abbreviated. The name is italicised, too, as is convention.

The NHM will be well versed in scientific correctness and indeed every business should know the ways in which it could hoist itself by its own petard.

standing T. rex soft toy

Fun and erudite copy that ticks SEO boxes

Below is the product copy from the toy shown above. There are three mentions of ‘T. rex‘, two mentions of ‘soft’, two mentions of ‘posable’, and a ‘cuddly’, ‘dinosaur’, ‘adjustable’, ‘playtimes’, ‘bend’ and ‘pose’ thrown in.

That ticks the box for product copy that plays well with search engines.

What I find more impressive is the sign-off phrase of ‘the softest posable dinosaur in all of prehistory’. In fact, it’s probably my favourite sentence in all of ecommerce. It plays to knowledgable parents and perfectly hits the note of joyous didacticism that the NHM is so good at finding.

nhm shop product copy

Additional product details are customer-focused

Staying with the standing T. rex soft toy for a moment, the additional product details are spot on.

What this copywriter has done is to understand what the adult wants to find in this section. Detail on size is fairly prosaic but important. And rather than list the actual materials used and that it conforms to safety regulations, the copy speaks of ‘soft materials’ and ‘extremely child friendly’. This is what the parent wants to hear.

Of course, more detail would be helpful if a buyer was concerned about allergies or age range suitability, but in this case we can assume these concerns are all met by the copy below.

standing t. rex addiitonal product details

Other great copy from across the store

Web exclusives are advertised prominently on product listings.

A great tactic for encouraging the impulse buy online. Small copy changes can make a difference to conversion rates.

web exclusive products

What is a museum shop for other than providing ‘thoughtful things’.

Category copy here that really hits the mark and fits the category in question – ‘freshly picked for you.’

category copy nhm shop

This carousel image on the shop homepage says ‘find your favourite dinosaur.’ The NHM is well aware of the fascination with dinosaurs, it comes from their undoubted cool appearance but also from that Victorian addiction to classification. Everyone has a favourite and this copy appeals to those that will be keen on searching out a Baryonyx, or other connoisseur’s choice of great lizard.

dinosaur category

The jewellery category header covers all the bases for customer personas. Not only are ‘her’ and ‘him’ mentioned, but the range of adjectives ensures that all will be enticed in, whether after the beautiful, unusual, sleek or stylish.

jewellery category

Can’t beat some homepage puns to keep the shopper’s smiling.

‘See the favourites that everyone’s roaring about.’ 

bestsellers nhm shop

More great product copy

Here’s a coffee table book for adults that’s pitched perfectly.

Note the sentence, ‘a great gift for those who enjoy Wildlife Photographer of the Year.’

house in the woods product page

The Triceratops soft toy rattle is promoted in terms of the stimulation and exploration it affords a child.

It also includes more nicely judged and fun copy. ‘Think all dinosaurs are fearsome and ferocious? Not these cute and cuddly creations.’

(click to visit page)

dinky triceratops

The leopard egg cup.

His handsome face will look fantastic on the breakfast table. An ideal quirky gift.

leopard egg cup

More T. rex brilliance here.

Caution, uninvited guests. The unchallenged lord of the dinosaurs is keeping guard, lashing out from bedroom walls in a terrifying holographic display.

T.rex wall poster

For further reading, check out Graham Charlton’s guide to ecommerce product pages.