When it comes to launching a new website, many business owners (and web designers) pay close attention to the design and layout of the site. They make sure the look and feel is just right and that technical functions of the site are working as they should. Business owners often spend considerable amounts of money on website development, but it’s very common for the written content (copy) to be overlooked.
This can be a very costly mistake.
The words on your website are extremely important. The words have the task of conveying your marketing message and ultimately assisting to persuade website visitors to buy from you. The right words on a website could be the difference between your website being a huge success or a dismal failure!
To help get this right, here are 5 tips for creating effective website copy.
1. Use headings, sub-headings and bold type
When a person visits your website, you have about 30 seconds OR LESS to grab their attention before they skip on to the next website.
Most people scan a web page rather than read it word for word, so if the headlines and bold type don’t grab their attention or speak directly to them as your target customer, they’ll leave.
Therefore it is super important that the headlines on your web page capture reader’s attention to keep them reading and on the page. Keep headlines to the point, and inclusive of keywords that will appeal to your target market’s interest.
2. Write for your readers
To effectively communicate with your reader, you must write for them. Get to know your reader and really understand your target customer. Is there a particular style or tone you need to use to reach them?
Effective online writing is about communicating and engaging the reader using short, simple words. When it comes to website content, less is usually more. Keep your sentences and paragraphs short. Get to the point quickly and avoid using jargon or technical terms.
3. Create a sense of urgency and drive action
Good website content is really about selling. When you write your content, make sure you are driving your customers to a specific action. Whether that is buying your product, calling you for a quote or signing up to your database, you need to make it clear what you want the person to do.
Creating time limited offers or bonus offers are a very effective way to encourage readers to make a decision to either purchase from you or at least sign up for your database before they leave your website.
4. Focus on benefits, not features
This is the secret to good copywriting. If you want to sell your product or service you must write about the benefits to the customer and not about features of the product. A feature describes a product or service but a benefit is what the user actually gains from using that product or service.
For example, don’t say “Our cars are safe and reliable”,” say “You’ll feel safe and secure in our cars.” Explain how your product or service will solve a problem for your customer and therefore make them feel happier, more confident, healthier or even wealthier.
5. Check and double check
Don’t forget to proofread your website copy before you publish it! Check for spelling errors and consistency in grammar, punctuation, abbreviations etc. Try reading it backwards – you’ll be surprised how many errors you’ll spot!
A great website is not just about having a great design or cool images – your visitors won’t be impressed if your website content is messy, hard to read or contains lots of errors. you can update your website content any time, so try different approaches to see which phrases, headlines and ‘calls to action’ generate more traffic and leads!