January 25, 2016
When working with new entrepreneurs, I enjoy being a part of their energy; it’s a very exciting time for them. They are thrilled their vision is coming to fruition with their new logo and branding and of course, their website.
Naturally, they want to tell the world about what they do and have big hopes and dreams for being inundated with daily leads that will keep them joyfully busy.
But then I come along and burst their bubble.
Well, sort of.
While some business owners already have experience and a solid grasp of online marketing, others don’t and sometimes it’s necessary for me to share my wisdom on the finer details of creating an effective website.
Some will appreciate the advice I provide on how they can best position their business to the world while others feel they have a pretty good handle on the whole process and just want to hand over all their prepared materials. And of course once the site is live, they anticipate sitting back and waiting for the money to roll in.
Now even though this article could be about SEO, it’s actually about something just as important and very related to search engine optimization — and that’s the text or copy that’s on the website.
Your website copy is just as important as SEO
Once you’ve read through, you’ll understand why website copy is extremely important and what to watch out for when wanting to appeal to your ideal target market.
As a Web developer/online marketer, one of the biggest challenges I face is when the client insists on having things done their way. Understandably, they know their business and industry more than I do; however, what they aren’t quite as well versed at is the psychology behind brand positioning and how we come across to our potential clients.
First impressions are the cornerstone to business success.
So what am I getting at here? I’m talking about websites that talk all about the business or individual as if they are writing out an achievement journal. The sentences all start with “I” or “We” (or in third person like “BusinessName is very capable in these areas:”)
And what is the result? A huge turn off to the reader.
Certainly, it’s a natural tendency for us to want to talk about ourselves and our offerings. But unfortunately, the message received by the reader is more like:
“Welcome to my website, I’m so excited you found it. Here’s all about me and my products and services. Please buy, I could use some sales here!”
Now you don’t want your website to have that kind of an impression, do you? How do YOU feel when you encounter websites like that?
Yes, the purpose of your website (usually) is to sell your product or service but how we do the selling is what makes or breaks its success.
Whether your business is B2B (Business to Business) or B2C (Business to Consumer), you are still wanting to capture the interest of a real person. So really your website needs to be written to accommodate P2P (Person to Person).
Regardless if B2B or B2C, your website copy should be P2P: Person to Person
Do you enjoy listening to someone go on and on about themselves? Then why would you expect others to come to your website only to hear you go on and on about how great you are?
I hate to break it to you, but no one is interested in YOU or your business until you build up some credibility in their eyes.
What they ARE interested in is to see if what you provide can take care of their needs or solve their problems.
In order to do be able to set the stage for sales that will naturally come once they realize you are the best solution for their problem, you need to develop “know, like and trust” factor with them first.
Show them you understand what they’re going through and what challenges they face.
Paint a picture on the kinds of results they are looking for that demonstrates you know exactly what is happening and that you’re the best solution for them.
So instead of writing phrases like: “MyBusinessName can help you… ” or “I am qualified in this area because… ” or “We at BusinessName are experts in… ”
Write phrases like this: “You need someone who… ” or “What you’ll learn is… ” or “How would it feel if… ”
Notice how all of these phrases are about your ideal client. You’re talking to them, about them. You’re empathizing with their challenges and offering a solution.
Now when you take a look at the text that’s on your website, does it do this?
Are you talking TO your ideal client as if this person was standing in front of you? Or are you talking AT them, trying to forcefully convince them to buy?
Aside from the Home, About and Products or Services pages on your website, another way you can demonstrate you understand your ideal client is through blogging and social media.
Use these inbound marketing channels to help your prospective clients learn more about you and your expertise in an organic way.
But do this through sharing your expertise, not your sales pitches.
Sales pitches are a turn-off. People don’t want to be “sold to”, they want to know they can trust you to help them.
This is especially true if your target market is women. Women are all about relationships and feeling trust and safety with the people they work with or purchase from.
So when it comes to writing text for your website, stop thinking it’s about you. It’s not at all about you.
It’s about your ideal client and what they need to hear from you in order to convince them you are the right choice. Once you have that mastered, you’re good as gold!
If writing in a compelling style that will draw in your ideal client and entice them enough to purchase is not your forte, hire a copywriter that will help do that for you. It’ll make a big difference in the success of you website!
Have you taken a close look at your website lately to see how it’s written? When looking at it from this different perspective, what did you discover?
As the founder, Susan Friesen brings a unique advantage to eVision Media clients by having earned a Bachelor in Business Administration degree with a concentration in Computer Information Systems through the Thompson River's University. Her experience in the Web development industry since 1999 has gained her much insight and knowledge in how to effectively brand a business and then translate that to a user-friendly, search-engine friendly, custom designed website. She is a graduate of the Vancouver Film School multi-media program and also earned several certificates in technology through the University of Victoria and Athabasca University. She won the 2003-2004 Governor General's Bronze Academic Award for achieving the highest academic standing in a diploma-level post secondary program. http://evisionmedia.ca