Not an Online Brochure – Writing Website Copy That Works!

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At Chartwell Agency, we do more than design and develop beautiful websites – we also write the website copy. Why? Writing website copy is a specialized style of marketing content development that is part science, part artform. Understanding the user experience, following best practices for consistent content presentation, telling a story, and driving a call to action across multiple display variables represent just a few of the challenges for web copywriters. Here are a few tips to write website copy that really works.

Remember who you’re writing for.

Your website is likely the first point of contact for many of your customers, prospects, partners, donors, or team members. Your website copy needs to speak to them, and in their language. Some of the conventional rules from your essay classes don’t apply – this is a chat between friends. Go ahead, end a sentence in a preposition or start a sentence with “And.” Also, ditch your jargon and use the language of your customers whenever possible. It will help your search engine rankings and make you more relatable to the people that matter most.

Make it short(er).

Who’s guilty of having an itty-bitty attention span? All of us! According to studies, the average amount of time spent on a website is just 15 seconds. Research also tells us that users will spend half as much time on a page when viewing on a mobile device versus a desktop. With the trend toward mobile viewing, say what you need to in as few words as possible.

Break it up.

Website visitors aren’t reading paragraphs of text – they’re skimming website copy while they scroll. Break up text with the consistent use of headlines, sub headlines, pull quotes, graphics, and bulleted list. When possible, find creative ways to translate your content to infographics or other visually compelling formats – it may buy you a few extra seconds of attention.

Tell them what to do.

What is it that you want users to do? Make sure your website copy drives to a clear call to action. Don’t make them hunt for what’s next. Rather, build in simple and clear instructions like, “Contact Us,” “Download Resource,” or “Apply Now” after blocks of simple, streamlined content.

Be consistent.

All website copy should be in the same voice – after all, it’s coming from a singular brand persona. In addition to consistency in the tone and voice, be consistent in the presentation of content. As an example, each page may follow a format of headline, intro statement, graphic, bulleted list, and call to action. That consistency makes for a more pleasant user experience as they navigate from page to page.

Balancing the do’s and don’ts of website copy with your brand voice can be a challenge, but it’s worth the investment of time and energy to make sure your most important marketing tool is working for you. If you’re interested in a website audit or some assistance website design and copywriting, give us a call!