Here are just a few things to get you thinking about content for your website:
First things first, who is your target customer?
Before you pick up a pen or tap a key, you need to know who you’re writing for. If you identify your typical customer you can create content that’s targeted and relevant to them. Ask yourself, who’s going to buy your product or invest in your service and why? Do whatever research is needed. With this information you can plan how you’re going to motivate your customer into whatever it is you want them to do.
Next, what are you going to write about?
If your creative juices are flowing, great, but stay focused – think about what your customer will want to know rather than what you want to write.
Identify what you need to say to them then plan where this information should sit on your website. In other words, get your sitemap pinned down at the start – that way you’ll capture what content is needed and ensure it has a logical flow.
Remember, it’s not all about you.
Imagine this - you meet someone for the first time and they talk so much about themselves that ten minutes later you find yourself looking around the room for the nearest escape route. Why? Because a one-sided conversation gets tedious.
So before you plan on telling potential customers about your company’s life history and sheer brilliance, start instead by telling them what you do and how it’s going to benefit them. That’s what they want to know and that’s what will get them hooked. Remember, you don’t have 10 minutes to persuade customers on the internet and they’re not going to waste time trawling through your website looking for buried information. Unless you give them something very clearly worth hanging around for, they’ll click off in a matter of seconds.
SEO: Show Google you’ve got style
When you’re writing web content for your website the thing you need to keep in mind about writing good web content is that while Google will pick up on your website’s keywords and phrases, start stuffing yourkeywords and phrases into your web content and they’ll think your website is plainspammy.
Say that again?
When you’re writing content for your website keep in mind that if you start stuffing it with keywords and phrases, Google will think you’re being plain spammy.
Instead, think quality because Google is now rather sophisticated and enjoys a bit of good writing too. And so do your customers!
Do some research and make a list of keywords and phrases at the start then weave them into your headings and body text. Your final copy should sound natural and flow. And, essentially, it should tell your audience what they want to know.
If you’re clever, you’ll keep things simple
Don’t use longwinded, complicated sentences because internet readers scan for information - don’t make it hard for them.
Instead, keep your sentences clear and concise as possible so information is easily digested. Long, complicated words? Another no-no. You’ll come across as talking at your audience rather than to them - a sure way to lose potential customers. The only way you’re going to win them over is if they connect with you, so make yourself sound appealing!
Entice customers with a call to action
Don’t leave customer guessing or mulling over what to do next – you may think it’s obvious but if you want them to sign up to your newsletter, phone for more information, buy your product online, then tell them. Inspire them with a few well-written calls to action. Here’s one as an example:
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Proofread your content for spelling and grammar errors. Read it aloud a few times and if it sounds clunky think about how you can reword it or swap things around to get that natural flow. And take out anything that doesn’t add real value, no matter how good you think it sounds!
Gail Clark is owner and copywriter at Word Woolf. Find out more about her copywriting services at www.wordwoolf.co.uk or email firstname.lastname@example.org. You can follow Gail on Twitter @wordwoolf.