If you’re wondering how to write a product review, you’re at the right place. I earn a decent living with only a few product review websites.
While building up my online review website business, I’ve tried many product review formats. Some worked tremendously well while others not so well.
As a result I’ve discovered a simple product review template that works well for promoting products as an affiliate simply by writing product reviews.
Introducing the “5 W Product Review Template“
The “5 W Review Template” is a simple approach for structuring and formatting your product reviews. It’s a sound product review template to organize your reviews. The format is as follows:
- What is it? What does it do?
- Why should I buy it?
- Who is it for?
- How is it used? / How does it work?
- What’s good about it? What’s bad about it?
- How much does it cost?
- Where can I buy it?
1. What is it? What does it do?
This section of the product review includes a brief overview and then lists the features. Your features can simply be a list or you can expand on each feature.
Another option is to provide a brief list of the key features and then a second section where you expand on the features by explaining what they do.
2. Why should I buy it?
This is a very important section of your product review. This is where you set out the benefits of the product. You’ll need to think about this part of the review. The benefits must sync with what it is the reader hopes buying the product will solve.
That said, your list of benefits need not be long. There may be 3 key benefits. In some cases fewer or more. Too many benefits can confuse the reader. For example, this site review WordPress themes. 2 key benefits many premium themes offer is a professional design AND it is an inexpensive website option. A third common benefit is that a theme is an easy website solution.
Those 3 benefits in a nutshell, are what theme buyers are looking for. Yes, there are other benefits, and some themes have additional benefits, but at the core those are the 3 benefits – professional looking design, inexpensive, and easy.
3. Who is it for?
Your reader wants to know if the product you review is for them. In my view stating who a product is for can be helpful. This section of a product review is tied into the benefits section, except it’s more concrete.
For example, a washing machine review may articulate who a particular model is for. If it’s a smaller washing machine, it may be for people living in an apartment. If it’s large and expensive, it may be for a family with demanding laundering needs.
4. How is it used? How does it work?
This one of my favorite sections in a product review. How much detail you provide depends on the nature of the product. Generally digital products offer more opportunity to explain how it’s used than physical products.
For example, in some of my website template reviews, I show a video demonstration of how to use a template to build a website.
You want to think about how you can show or demonstrate the product to your readers. This again ties into the benefits in a concrete method.
5. What’s good about it? What’s bad about it?
You can go about this in 2 different ways.
Gloss it over based on the features. This the option if you haven’t used a particular product much or at all. You can comment on what you think about it based on the feature-set. You could phrase it as “I think that features X, Y, and Z are excellent. However, it would be much improved if feature A was …”
Base it on your experience of the product. This is optimal. If you’ve used a product (not using a product doesn’t mean you can’t review products), you can be detailed in setting out your likes and dislikes. Or you can phrase it as “pros” and “cons”, “advantages” and “disadvantages.”
6. How much does it cost?
I don’t always include the price, especially if the product’s price is prone to changing or being on sale frequently.
However, if the price is stable, I’ll include a price with a disclaimer at the bottom of the review saying that prices and inventory may vary.
One very effective way of pre-selling products is brining attention to readers about sales and deals.
7. Where can I buy it?
This is your call-to-action. You tell the reader where they can buy the product. Obviously this is where your affiliate link goes linking to the online vendor. You’ll want to test different retailers (if sold in multiple places online). Also, be sure to see how it works to provide links to all online retailers.
FAQs on How to Write a Product Review
a. Do you need to actually ask these questions in a product review?
No. You can title the sections anything you like such as Overview, features, benefits, etc. However, there aren’t many reviews that use this product review template, so it might be an opportunity to differentiate your review website.
b. Are product reviews the only way to promote a product?
No. Product reviews are one of many techniques to promote a product. There are many product promotion techniques you can use IN ADDITION to writing product reviews.
c. Does the “5 W Product Review Template” work for any type of product review?
Yes. In fact, it can be used promoting physical products, digital products, services, and membership websites.
d. Do I have to use the questions as headings in my product reviews?
Not at all. The 5 W approach to writing product reviews is more about giving you guidance in thinking about what to include in your review. In fact, journalists use this method in writing news … the questions may be a little different, but the use of questions is a similar concept to structuring and writing news stories as it is writing a review.
e. Can I add more to the review than the 5 W questions?
Absolutely, and I recommend you do. An effective bit of additional information to add is your experience with the product. This is an excellent section to add. There are other types of content you can add to a review, but your experience in conjunction with the 5 W’s will form a good review.
f. How long should my product review be?
As long as necessary. I’ve written 500 word reviews and 2,000 word reviews. It really depends on what you have to say about the product. Generally, the more detailed you can be, the better. It’s great to demonstrate you know the product well – both the good parts and bad.
g. How can I learn more about how to write a product review AND building affiliate review websites?
You can get my free Definitive Guide to Affiliate Review Websites. This Guide expands on this product review template, shows you a live review that earns four-figures each month (yes, one review), and gives you many ideas for writing other product promotion content.