Not everyone likes writing. Not everyone’s good at writing. But that doesn’t stop gazillions of companies getting their employees to write their web content, to… er, save money.
Often you end up with a hot mess of confused messaging, disjointed copy and a tone of voice split seven ways to Sunday.
And nobody, but no one sticks around when they’re baffled by blah-filled blurb.
If you’re up for the challenge, here are a few tips to prevent your website from falling into a black hole of mediocrity. Or worse, winning an award for corporate guff.
Fact: websites packed with lifeless features, result in poor conversions.
Solve your customer’s problems and tap into their wants, needs and desires. How? By turning features into benefits. They’ll connect with you on a much deeper, more emotional level.
Does the car advert sell the car? Or does it sell adventure, freedom and prestige? That fancy perfume ad . . . does it sell a flowery fragrance? Or does it sell romance, luxury and glamour?
Single out the core benefits of your product or service and sing them from the rooftops.
Would your website make for great buzzword bingo?
Using complex or obscure jargon when something clear and simple will do, is a great way to turn off your readers (and annoy them).
Why use advantageous when you can use helpful? Disseminate when you can use send?
And, choose everyday phrases over hype or technical language (unless we’re talking seriously niche). And write as you speak.
Because conversational copy is waaay more effective at turning interest into action.
Too many cooks
Give the job to one person who loves writing and knows the business well. Don’t chuck it at the entire marketing department and expect something good to come out.
Committee-based copywriting? It’s the death-knell to website copy. And, getting five different people to approve it isn’t much better, either… People tend to make changes, just for the sake of it.
And when that happens—uh-oh—your website ends up like a bowl of cold stew. Sloppy and indigestible.
Shrink or stink
Complex, meandering sentences and haughty, long-winded concepts?
Think they make you sound like an expert?
Make like Ernest Hemingway and distil your message into as few words as possible.
Against the clock
Are you a skimmer? Most of us are. Attention spans are shrinking. Information is mushrooming. So keep your website copywriting succinct. Add bullet points and punchy headings. Replicate important messages. Spread liberally throughout.
Respect your reader’s time. Don’t waffle!
Your best website yet
Copywriting for the web is tricky. But follow these tips and you’ll have a site that resonates with your readers, influences their behaviour and builds loyalty.
Invest as much time and resource into your web copy, as you do design and functionality. You’ll get an online sales person, working hard for you 24-hours a day, seven days a week.
You might even lower your bounce rate and get a valuable leg up from Google.
(Of course, if you don’t have time to do all this, you could always hire me. I’ll write you a slick, persuasive website that perfectly expresses your voice and value—from head to toe.)
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