When it comes to having a great website for your brand, the actual process of writing copy can be a daunting task, especially if you’re solely responsible. It’s easy to get lost focusing on the visual elements of the website (which are of great importance as well), but at the end of the day, it’s the copy that’s going to convert visitors into customers. Whether you have some writing experience or it’s unexplored territory, you don’t have to be a professional writer to create a great website. In this article, we’re going to cover various tips for writing your own website copy so you can ensure you’re maximizing every opportunity when someone lands on your site.
Before we get into the more technical topics, let’s cover the basics. These are going to be general fundamentals for copy across your website as a whole. No matter where it’s located, your copy should do the following:
As soon as someone lands on your website, the copy needs to attract their attention and hold it. According to Nielsen, if you want to keep visitors reading and delving deeper into your site, you have about 10 seconds to communicate your value proposition. Because this window of opportunity is so small, the words you use are extremely important.
“You” – speak directly to the reader which shifts the focus from you to them.
“Because” – give the reader a reason to take action.
“Free” – everyone likes free, so don’t be afraid to use it (sparingly).
“Easy” – explain how easy it is to resolve their problem and the benefits they’ll gain
“Proven” – back up your claims with proven results to build credibility and trust
In order to get visitors to stick around, you have to engage them. Give them a reason to click on another page or continue reading. The longer they spend on your site and the more they read, they’re going to become more familiar with your brand, naturally increasing trust and memorability. No copy should ever lead to a dead end.
“How to” – a powerful phrase that says you can help visitors accomplish a certain task.
“Act now” – a simple, direct CTA that can motivate an immediate response.
“More” – use to get visitors to other pages or parts of your sales funnel.
“Discover” – create a sense of curiosity that compels visitors to continue on.
Nothing gets visitors to stick around better than an abundance of value. Your website copy should always provide readers with useful information that educates. When readers feel that the time they’ve spent on your site was well worth it, they’re much more likely to keep coming back and hopefully become a customer.
“Guaranteed” – let them know that their time won’t be wasted.
“Safe and effective” – minimize the perception of risk (depending on the product or service).
“Complimentary” – similar to free, offer visitors valuable information at no cost to them.
“Value” – highlight the values for your readers so they’re easy to pinpoint.
Don’t be afraid to express your personality and voice through website copy. Not only is it going to create a unique experience for visitors, but it’s also helpful for communicating your mission and values. Let your readers know why your business exists and what you’ve set out to solve. Keep the tone of your copy synonymous across the entire site.
Once you’ve delivered value to your readers, it’s time to create content that shows them exactly how you can resolve their problems. This is also done through answering any hesitations that are holding them back from making the purchase. Use guides, CTAs, and long form sales pages to direct potentials through the final stages of your sales funnel.
“Understand” – demonstrate and empathize with your target audience.
“Risk-free” – take on all the risk to make the decision easier for your readers.
“Everything you need” – illustrate all of the features and make it all inclusive.
“Never” – identify the pain points they’re experiencing and how they can be solved.
The following tips are great for using when creating specific pages on your website. While keeping in mind everything we covered above, here’s how you can make the most of your website copy when it needs to be different.
Priority: Orientation and Engagement
The layout of your homepage should be clean and to the point so as to not overwhelm visitors as soon as they land. Break up large blocks of text and focus on engaging with the reader so they stick around and continue through your site.
Primary Approach: You want to make visitors feel like they’re in the right place. It’s your job to create a friendly, welcoming environment that guides them to the next step. For some more tips on writing homepage copy, check out these posts:
Priority: Trust and Credibility
While the ultimate goal of a products/services page is to sell the reader on it, you have to be systematic in the way you go about doing so. A hard sale almost never works, so it’s up to the copy to answer concerns, build trust, and establish credibility.
Primary Approach: The first thing you have to do is educate your readers on the product or service you’re offering. Once they have an understanding, compare it to similar products to show why yours is better. Finally, guide them through the buying process.
Give customers a behind-the-scenes look at your company so they can become more connected and familiar with your brand. Here you can express your mission, core values, and highlight the key benefits you bring to the table.
Primary Approach: Create copy with a storytelling mindset. Walk readers through your brand to help them understand why you exist and how you can ultimately help them with a problem.
Priority: Easy accessibility You want to make it as easy as possible for customers to get in contact with you. When your company isn’t easy to reach, customers can begin to look elsewhere for solutions.
Primary Approach: Keep your contact us page plain and simple. Readers aren’t looking for flashy pictures and impressive copy, they just want to get in touch with your company.
Your website is as much a part of your business as your physical store, the products and services you provide, and the people that operate behind it. Follow these tips to come up with website copy that conveys your value while also satisfies the needs and desires of your target audience.