It’s downright hard to write succinct and clear web copy. And it can also be very time consuming. But if you nail your copy, you can increase traffic to your website, the amount of time people spend on it, and potentially your conversion rate.
You might think it’s best to list as much detail as possible on your website. In fact, it’s quite the opposite. Listing a lot of information is effective for print publications, but it’s ineffective for a web page. This is because web pages have unlimited space but their readers have very limited attention.
To help you combat the challenge of writing for web, check out our top five tips for developing sharp and concise web copy.
Place your most important information first
Web copy is different from other types of writing. On a web page your most important information needs to come first. Often a simple statement of what you do and how you can offer value is the key piece of information needed.
This style of writing is called the ‘inverted pyramid’. Here the most noteworthy information always comes first before detail and background information. Journalists use this structure of writing so that you’re able to understand the bigger picture of an article from the first paragraph.
Your customers also want to understand the big picture first. Your web copy needs to succinctly convey from the outset what you can do for them.
Avoid large paragraphs
Copy on each page of your website should be short and to the point. Large blocks of writing can be off-putting for browsers and can come across as clunky. Browsers are often scanning or looking for a quick answer when reading web copy, so it’s best to give them what they want rather than have them leave your page to find it elsewhere.
Keep in mind that you should also have around 250-300 words for SEO purposes so that your page can be optimised correctly and be discovered. Although 300 words may sound like a small number, you’ll be surprised how dense 300 words looks on a published web page.
Use customer testimonials
Reinforce the value of your business by putting client testimonials on each page. From a customer’s point of view, you are not the most credible source of information about your service. Testimonials from your clients will add to your credibility and increase the value of your proposition. They are a form of social proof with high persuasion powers.
Include a call to action
A call to action is vital. What steps do you want your browsers to take? What are they meant to do next? This could be simply a link to another piece of content you have, an invitation to subscribe to your newsletter, or a pop-up contact form asking them to get in touch. If you highlight what you want your browsers to do next, it’s a lot easier for them to engage.
Top tip: Always incorporate a ‘contact us’ link or contact details on every page so browsers can easily get in touch. Don’t make your visitors work hard by scrolling through every page searching for ways to make contact.
Establish a value proposition
Your value proposition is your conversation starter. It’s something that gets the reader’s attention and makes them want to learn more about you. Highlighting your value proposition enables your readers to understand your services and how you can benefit them. The quicker they can understand your abilities and why you’re better than the competition, the more likely they are to remember your business or product.
People looking at your website are often in a hurry and make quick decisions about whether you’re right for them based on your website content. That’s why it’s best to have your value proposition clear, concise, and credible.
Keep these top five pointers in mind to make sure your content is effective. Remember: don’t treat your visitors like information-hungry sharks. Position your information clearly and always get straight to the point. If you’re in need of a more professional hand to help, you can always contact us here for the right advice or to help you craft the right message for web.