Creating a website is not just about navigation and design. Effective web copy is also important to attract the attention of your online audience.
Web content is the pillar of a website. Good web copy will set your website apart from others. Ultimately, it is the web content that wins the heart and wallet of your customers.
So, what is required to write effective web content? Here I will share with you the dos and don’ts of effective web copywriting.
Dos of Web Copy Writing
1. Write Effective Headlines
Writing effective headlines is important to grab the attention of online users. You should spend some time coming up with compelling headlines. The headline of the web copy is the first thing that most users will see when entering the website. So, it must be done right.
You must create enticing headlines for your web copy. The headlines should be direct and concise. You include power words in our headlines. Power words evoke an emotion and a response. The words in the headline should compel people to continue to read the web content till the end.
You can use headline analyzer tools such as Sharethrough Headline Analyzer. The tool scores your headline based on a multivariate linguistic algorithm. Moreover, the tool also offers suggestions to improve the engagement and impression of the headlines.
2. Explain Benefits to Readers
You must explain the benefits of your product in a web copy. Listing features is important. However, your main focus should be on how the product features will benefit users.
People buy products because it offers some value to users. They may buy a product to solve a problem or get entertained. Your web copy must highlight benefits for users. This will make the web copy more compelling for online users.
Management expert Simon Sinek says that you need to start with ‘why’ instead of ‘what’. He says that people are convinced by not what you do, but why you do it.
You should tell the readers why buying the product is important for them. You must make people understand the benefits of buying the products. This will result in an increased conversion rate for your website.
3. Customize Content Based on User Intent
User intent refers to the intention of users in browsing your website. Online users can click on your site for different reasons. The three main reasons people click on a website include getting information, comparing information, and making a purchase.
Users want to know more about your company or products. They may also compare the information such as prices and offers with that of the competitor. Lastly, users may want to make a purchase.
You should align your web content based on the intent. The web content should address the intent of the user is browsing your website. It involves assisting a customer in different stages of the buying process.
Focusing on the user intent will result in increased time users spend on a website. It will also reduce the bounce rate – the time it takes for users from entering a website and clicking on the back button. The result will be a positive impact on the search engine ranking of a website.
4. Use Positive Words in Content
You must use positive words in your web content. The content should have a solution-oriented tone. In other words, the web copy should focus on the solutions rather than the problems.
A web copy with negative stuff will likely discourage customers from exploring further.
Suppose that your company deals with gold coins and bars. Instead of focusing on reduced prices, the web content should focus on the opportunity to profit due to low prices. Users will more likely make a purchase when you show them the positive aspect of a situation.
A positive tone will help you gain the trust of online users. You must highlight the opportunities for your target audience in your web copy. Shedding light on the positive aspects will impel the customers to take the desired action.
5. Analyze Your Web Copy
You must analyze your web copies to find out what type of content are a hit among online readers. Find out about web pages that receive the most online traffic.
You can use Google Analytics to analyze the traffic of your web pages.
Determine whether short or long-form content gets the most traffic. You should also look at the headline length of high-traffic web copies.
You must use A/B testing to analyze the performance of web copies containing a call to action. A/B testing is effective in analyzing web pages that prompt users to take an action such as signing up for a newsletter, downloading a guide, or making a purchase. The testing will allow you to test versions of web copies that are most effective in convincing users to take an action.
Don’ts of Web Copy Writing
1. Craft Content Without Planning
Planning is important before you write a web copy. Failing to plan is failing to write an effective web copy.
You must plan to make your content compelling for the online audience. Start by researching the target market. Find out about their likes, dislikes, fears, and problems. Understanding your target audience will help you customize the web copy.
You should understand the education level, income, and preferences of your target market. Consider listing items from the most important to the least important for your target audience.
Once you have thoroughly understood your target market, you can create effective web content. This will let you know the right words to use in your content that will persuade your target market to take an action.
2. Copying Content from Competitors
Studying the high-ranking websites of your competitors is helpful. It allows you to take ideas about writing compelling content.
But copying the content of your competitors is a big mistake. Search engines will penalize your website if it contains spun content of another website. This will prevent your website from appearing on the results page of search engines.
Your web copy should be unique. It should contain original ideas. Your website content needs to be bold and different. It should address a common problem in new and creative ways.
One of the ways to craft unique content is to include your personal experiences. Tell readers about personal stories related to the topic. Including your own experience will make the content personal and memorable for the users. You must write about a topic from your unique perspective and background.
3. Lack Persuasiveness
Crafting effective web copy is all about being persuasive. Persuasive content appeals to both logic and emotion. It introduces facts and compels readers to take an action using positive words.
To write persuasive content, you need to research thoroughly about the target audience. You should also have a deep understanding of the products and services that you are selling. A detailed understanding of the products and audiences will help you write persuasive web content.
Another tip for writing persuasive content is to be empathic. Your web copy should create an emotional appeal. It should target the sensitivities of the target market. You can create empathic content by addressing the pain and pleasure points of the target audience. And of course, this requires a thorough understanding of the needs, wants, fears, and desires of the target market.
4. Focusing on Your Company
A common mistake when crafting a web copy is focusing on the company. To write compelling content, your web content should focus more on the customers. You should not tell what makes your company great. Tell your customers how your company makes them feel great.
Writing effective web copy is all about focusing on your customers. Your web copy should focus on the wants and desires of your customers.
5. Writing Complex Content
The intent of a web copy should not be to impress. It should be to convey the message most effectively. Using complex words in the content will only turn away your online audience.
You must keep the content simple. Consider getting the message across in as few words as possible. Conciseness and brevity are the hallmarks of effective web copies. Your language should to the point and brief. You should use words that can be easily understood by the average Joe.
If you fill your web copy with complex words, you risk losing the interest of most online readers. Unless your website targets academics or C-level executives, the tone of your web copy should be simple and unpretentious.
Remember that crafting good web copy is the foundation of a successful website. But it is not the only thing that will attract online visitors. You must also focus on other things such as on-page and off-page SEO, blog publishing, and digital marketing. A successful online presence requires a focus on all these things.