All the Write Stuff: 5 Copywriting Tips for Non-copywriters
A new website is a hefty investment. It is your digital storefront, and for a growing number of businesses, your primary storefront. Now, more than ever, consumers are turning to digital channels to find, research and purchase goods and services before picking up a phone or setting foot in a brick-and-mortar store.
Whether you’re in B2B or B2C, an unprofessional website can kill new business opportunities before you ever know about them.
We repeat: your website is very important.
You already knew that, though, which is why you hired professional designers and developers to build it. But who wrote your website content? If you haven’t entrusted your website content to an expert, your website is probably not doing its job as well as it could be.
Here are a few reasons why you should turn your website content strategy and content writing over to an expert.
People read web copy differently than they do a book or a magazine. They tend to skip around.
in an F-shaped
Zeroing in on…
“And sometimes pull quotes . . .”
. . . to give them an idea of what’s on the page before investing the time to read or deciding to move on.
Writing web content that pulls viewers in and entices them to stay requires a unique skillset and lots of experience. Googling “best practices for web content” will only get you so far, even if your message is on-point and information valuable.
One rule of thumb to keep readers engaged is to put your most compelling content first as a hook.
If you had no experience in remodeling a house, you probably wouldn’t hire a contractor to do all the work but insist that you do all the electrical work yourself, would you?
When you hire a digital agency, they have the skills and experience to design, build and write your website in a way meant to help you meet business goals. They are able to look at your current website strategy, content, search rankings, competitors and all kinds of factors that determine how users find and engage with your content to uncover your content’s strengths and weaknesses.
Content experts have the knowledge to make sense of your data. They also have the tools.
If Screaming Frog, SEMRush and BuzzSumo all sound like energy drinks to you, then you’re probably missing out on valuable data and insights.
Tools like these are great resources to have at your disposal, but they cost money and take time to learn. Content experts already have these in their toolbox and know how to put them to work.
Your website might have 10 pages. Maybe it has 30, or 200. We’ve crawled websites with thousands of pages. No matter how big or small a website, filling it with concise and on-message content is going to take time.
If you’re new to SEO and UX design, it will take even longer. As a busy professional, that’s time you likely don’t have. Downplaying the amount of time it takes to write powerful and creative web content has sent many a project timeline awry. And time is money.
If you aren’t quite sure what “SEO” is or don’t know the difference between an H1 and H2, you’ll quickly start to feel overwhelmed. You’re also bound to end up with content that doesn’t work well with your website design or doesn’t engage your audience as well as you want it to.
Good content and design go hand in hand. Hand a web designer a project to design with no content, and you’re bound to see some pretty avant garde UX. Present a writer with a blank page, and you can expect anything from a haiku to the Odyssey—and everything in between.
The best way to approach content and design is a little at a time and together. It’s a chicken and the egg sort of thing.
Experienced content experts are able to spot when a piece of content will be more engaging as a graphic, video or interactive element. They’re also able to envision how content pieces and design elements work together to present a message and build an entire experience.
When your designers and writers are in the same place working together throughout a web project, they’re able to weigh in on each other’s work, tweaking up to your website launch, so every word and button lends itself to a seamless user experience.
Content is why users visit websites. Users will forgive clunky design. (Heard of little site called Wikipedia?) But no amount of UX genius can save crappy content. So when you consider how you’re investing in your website, are you focusing on the right areas?