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HOW TO WRITE COPY FOR YOUR WEBSITE


A girl writing in a notebook with a pen by a lake

Welcome to the most painful part of website projects for my clients - what to write? To help alleviate some of the pain, we have gathered five tips to guide you through with great success, hopefully! Of course, the easiest way to do this would be to hire a web copywriter. Someone with web copy experience understands SEO best practices and what copy is needed to get your website to the top of the search results. This article is written with you in mind for those who can’t afford a web copywriter.


It is true that people do not read websites as they would a book. In fact, according to the Nielson Norman Group’s study on how people read online, they consistently found that web users scan text instead of reading it. They also noticed some recurring scanning habits, like the F-Pattern. This is when users start by reading a heading horizontally, then skip down to another prominent row of text, just like an F.


So then, how can we make sure we’re putting engaging content onto our website so that we may get that conversion?


Step 1: Research

The first step in any content writing endeavor is to do ample research. Research other reputable companies in your industry to see what (and how) they’re talking about their business. How do they present information on their website? Do you see anything missing that you could improve upon?


Keyword research is also important. Understanding which keywords to use for your service offering will help drive traffic to your site. We like to use moz.com to conduct keyword research. They have a free version on their landing page, but we advise signing up and using their free keyword research tool under their Keyword Explorer link. The information they provide there is far better than the landing page tool.


Moz’s results will tell you which keywords are most searched on the internet. You may discover some keywords you didn’t think about! It will show you how many searches per term, and you can even select which country you need the results from as it will vary from culture to culture.


Don’t forget to utilize these keywords in your title tags and metadata descriptions!


Step 2: The Home Page vs. Click Thru Pages

The Home page content and strategy will be a little bit different than any of the click-through pages. The Home page will need to be written in a way to get folk’s attention. Think of phrases and sentences that will have the visitor say, “Tell me more!” That’s the content you need for the Home page because if it garners interest, folks will want to click through to learn more, which is also great for your search engine results. Note that if there’s too much copy on the Home page, that could deter folks from sticking around to learn more. It can be a little overwhelming for some. So make sure to keep it short and concise.


Consider creating a headline upon entry that will entice the reader to say “Yes!”. Let’s look at Uber’s website, for example. They understand that folks who are coming to their website to learn more about being a driver are enticed by the fact that they can make their hours and make as much or as little money as they’d like. Their entry copy, “Drive when you want, make what you need” with the subtitle “Earn on your own schedule” speaks directly to their people. They will say, “YES! That’s what I want!” The more yeses you can get from your audience, the better off you’ll be.


The click-through pages will be different in that the copy on those pages will be more informative. Once folks click through, they are prepared to take the time to read. You can be as descriptive as you’d like, but be mindful that your audience may not want to sift through a lot of text to find what it is they’re looking for. Be sure to know your audience before you start creating your content on these pages.


As you know, most websites are trying to sell something in some kind of way. When writing sales copy, keep in mind the old sales adage - pain, fear, gain. What are your customer’s pain points? What do they fear? What will they gain by working together with you? The click-through pages are a great opportunity to speak to your audience in a way that will engage them to want to click that contact button.


Step 3: Focus on Benefits Over Features

For those selling a product or a service, you may want to consider another common sales principle, “Features tell, benefits sell.” People are more persuaded by how a product or service will improve their lives than by its bells and whistles. To maximize your conversion rate, apply this concept to your copy by focusing on the benefits of your product or service.


What’s the difference between a feature and a benefit? Features describe what the product does, often getting specific with technical terms. Benefits explain what the product’s features will help the user achieve. Benefits push users into making a purchase decision. A benefit-focused headline tells the reader why they need the product. It sparks an emotional response, unlike the feature-focused headline, which is purely practical..


Step 4: Create Credibility

Websites are created not only to promote our services and product offerings but also to build trust and credibility. If you have reviews or testimonials of your product or service, don’t be shy! Add these throughout your website. Not only is it good for those visiting your site, but it’s also good for those pesky Google bots that peruse your site to see if your business is credible or not.


Have you received awards or accreditations? Add those as well! Have you partnered with other businesses? Add their logos. Anything you can do to showcase your business’s greatness… add it!


Step 5: Write Compelling Calls-to-Action (CTAs)

A call-to-action, or CTA, plays the important role of telling users what to do next if they’re interested in your product. Without these, your customers will not know how to engage with your business nor will they understand the next step. We encourage you to sprinkle several buttons throughout your website to make it extra easy for your potential customers to connect with you. Let’s get that conversion rate up!


In a VWO case study, a simple change in CTA text from “For Skin Consultation, Register Here” to “I want an expert opinion. Sign me up!” increased sales by 22% and conversions by 137.5 percent. A more conversational, friendly tone had a more significant impact. The phrase “Expert opinion” is also more impactful than “skin consultation” alone.


Here are two general landing page copywriting guidelines you can follow to maximize CTA impact:


  1. Make your CTA specific: Tell the user exactly what they’ll get when they click

  2. Use emotive, first-person language: Match the user’s motivation wherever possible 




We understand you have a long journey ahead of you with writing your copy for your website, but we sincerely hope these 5 steps have helped get you started and down a successful path. If you have any questions or would like us to help you with your copy, please feel free to schedule a consultation to get your project started.




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