Emma Healy, our new associate copywriter, provides advice on writing powerful web copy to achieve maximum results online…
Most of us know that good design is important but it’s just as crucial to invest time and effort in your copy: don’t risk underselling your brand with mediocre content!
Our online behaviour is complex – often with divided attention and short website dwell times – so take the opportunity to make a great impression with web copy that packs a punch:
7 steps to super-boost your web copy
1. Always write with your intended audience in mind
Your website’s content and style should be tailored to appeal to your target demographic.
It’s tempting to talk up your products or services but avoid bombarding visitors with information; instead, tell them what they really want to know by keeping their question implicitly in your mind: “how will this benefit me?”
Your tone of voice should be consistent and appropriate to what you’re offering – in some cases informal and accessible is the way to go, in others it’s all about being firmly authoritative; however, portraying yourself as professional, trustworthy and reliable is always a must.
2. Keep it succinct
Research indicates that only 16% of web users read pages word-for-word – most people merely scan content (source: Jakob Nielsen’s Alertbox) – so follow the ‘inverted triangle’ method; start with a simple statement of what you do and the key benefits, then give the important details and finally the background information. Bullet points can help banish waffle, keep things concise and deliver your message efficiently.
3. Be vivid: show your personality, tell a story
If your services rely on converting consumers for a longer-term, ongoing interaction then give thought to how you can pique interest and then nurture that relationship.
Generic corporate copy can seem dry, devoid of character and is unlikely to excite or engage your target audience, so weave in something unique, interesting and relevant. Perhaps introduce key members of your team, give an insight into your company ethos or history, showcase a successful project, or illustrate how or why your product or service has evolved.
4. Make it search engine-friendly
Search engine optimisation (SEO) might seem overwhelming, on top of all your other copy considerations, but panic not! Incorporating familiar keywords – the precise, non-frilly terms you anticipate consumers will actually use when searching for your business and sector – into headings and body copy will naturally boost your website’s search engine ranking without comprising readability. Thinking about ‘carewords’ – words which act as cues and signposts once visitors are on your website – is also advisable, as this enhances user-experience.
5. Add useful, helpful information
Position yourself as an expert in your sector, and an influential ‘go-to’ brand, by answering your prospective customers’ questions and queries.
Assist visitors to your website with FAQs, tips, advice, product details, a list of your services – help them to build a strong positive association to your brand and business.
Adding creative blog articles will inject a steady stream of fresh relevant content to your site; this will further boost your search engine ranking and provides fodder for your social media platforms, allowing you to drive traffic back to your website.
6. Tell your target audience how to proceed
Whether the next step is simply to add a product to their basket, call to make an appointment, sign up to your newsletter or request a free trial, entice your (possibly time-short) visitor by making sure your call to action is crystal clear, easily accomplished and the benefits are stated.
7. Read through your copy: is it credible? Is it engaging? Is it persuasive?
Your website should be a powerful asset for your brand and business – it’s time to be honest: if your content isn’t doing you justice, speak to a professional copywriter.
A great copywriter – one who sees your business with fresh eyes, strips out excess rambling, includes the relevant information and engages with your target audience – is worth their weight in gold because you simply cannot afford to have weak web copy.
If you would like help with digital marketing we offer a range of services which can be combined into a bespoke solution to meet your specific needs – to find out more, please get in touch today on 07966 039740 or email firstname.lastname@example.org