When you’re writing or giving a review of a consumer product of any type, particularly electronics, you’ll find that there are a number of potential traps into which you could fall. Whether this is your first experience with a company or type of product, or you’ve got a long history of usage with the type of product or company you’re reviewing, there are some things you’ll want to watch out for.

1. Prioritizing Elements To Review
Chances are there are a lot of different aspects of the product you’ll want to review. Especially with something more complex such as a computer or iPod. When you’re writing yours, you’ll want to make sure you prioritize which of those elements is the most important. For instance, while you might write a review for a lap top, the way its software functions is probably more important than the size. While the size and ease with which it can be carried around is an important element, it’s not the primary reason people invest in a lap top. Make sure you keep the consumer’s primary and secondary needs in mind when writing.

2. Accommodating for Different Levels of Background Knowledge
This is one pitfall that many are unable to avoid, particularly when reviewing things like electronics or tools. You’ll probably have some people reading the review that have a vast knowledge of the type of product you’re reviewing, making it easy for them to understand industry/insider language. However, you’ll also undoubtedly have a few people reading the review who are uneducated about such language. Further, while one product might be great for beginners, the same product might be frustratingly simplistic for an expert who needs more from their device. Make sure that you keep everyone’s needs in mind when you’re reviewing, not just one subset of people with a certain level of skills.

3. Avoiding Influence From Past Experiences
If you have spent time with the company’s products before, you may have a bias in either the positive or negative direction. For instance, let’s say you’ve had a really bad experience with Product X, but the company is looking for a review on Product Z. If Product Z works well and meets the needs you expect it to, giving it a good review is important. Similarly if Product X was became the new thing you can’t live without but Product Z was underwhelming, you as the reviewer have an obligation to tell people so. Keeping a level head and writing an authentic and unbiased opinion on the product is a difficult but important step to take when giving a review.

4. Articulating To Someone Without Any Prior Knowledge
Finally, perhaps one of the hardest parts about writing a review, figuring out how to write a review for people without prior knowledge is essential. The easiest way to overcome this is to write the review as if you’re writing it for middle schoolers. Write with simple language with clear, concise points without being condescending.

Consumer reviews are an important part of sales and the modern economy today, and with a little care and thought you’ll be sure to write a great review without falling into any of these traps.