A website can be a pretty powerful marketing partner for your business. For a website to be a success, it is important to define specific goals for the site and to write the appropriate copy to accompany the design. Below are a few tips for writing specific and engaging website copy.
- Web visitors want more than your company’s brochure copy. Yes, web visitors are looking for more than the traditional company brochure—they’re looking for detailed, easy-to-read content. Sales copy can and does often work on the web, but there’s a time and place for it. Lengthy, formal dissertations are not acceptable to most visitors of your site; instead, visitors want the details presented in concise and friendly context.
- It’s about more than looks. Graphic design plays a vital role in both offline and online marketing, but websites must be about more than graphic design alone. Websites have to have real content to attract visitors through the search engines—a pretty site alone that’s informationally empty just won’t cut it.
- A good website is easy to read. Remember, visitors to your site want to find the information they came for quickly and easily. Believe it or not, the way the information is presented has a huge impact on whether or not they’ll stick around long enough to find it. The first rule is to keep the default font size large enough for comfortable reading. Next, it’s a really good idea to keep paragraphs short and use bullet points, headers, and subtitles frequently to add whitespace and guide the reader to what they’re seeking. This might not be necessary in traditional print, but it is the way of the web.
- Think about the Search Engines. Search engines work by taking the search keywords or phrase you entered and presenting you with websites whose copy, page titles and links match the words in your search. It is not enough to have meta tags with keywords! When writing your website copy, make sure that you have your most important search terms as page titles, link titles, headings and within the text itself. There is a balance to be struck between keyword-rich copy and readable, easy to understand text, but it will be worth the effort when you have an easy to use website with good page ranking.
In the end, it’s all about keeping in mind that the web is a completely different beast than offline marketing. While some ideas are cross-functional, in practice, all web experts will tell you that there are major differences too. Understanding how visitors use the web and offering a solution based on those facts (rather than just the offline marketing goals) is the best way to build upon a foundation of success.