Three common mistakes when writing website copy

My journey to creating website copy was a long winded one. I feel like it suddenly appeared to me as something I was good at, yet looking back at my (odd) career over the past 10 years it kind of all makes sense.

Writing was something I have been fairly comfortable with since school (I’d rather write an essay than anything science based). I distinctly remember once my sociology teacher in sixth form telling me my essay was ‘the most boring thing they had ever read, but structurally perfect’ so I had to get full marks. A weird, possibly not, compliment. 

I promise the website copy I write is a lot more interesting than any sociology essay I wrote in sixth form! However, much like essay writing, there are a few ‘rules’ and a formula you should apply to your website copy.

The words on your website exist to convince visitors to the page to take a specific action, be it emailing you, buying a product, signing up to a newsletter and so on.

Good website copy doesn’t just tell the page visitor about your business, it succinctly gives them reasons to know, like, trust and buy from you.

There are some excellent examples of very clever copy, and of course there are some glaring mistakes out there too (all of which I made in year one of my first music business!).

Here we go:

Using the wrong tone of voice

There is a time and a place for formality, and your business may not be it! I’ve worked with a few people who run fun, cool, down to earth businesses that you’d expect to have a chatty and warm tone to their words. 

Yet the minute they are asked to write an email, or a social media post, or a website page, they go all, ‘Greetings there kind sirs, would you be so gracious as to ponder my webpage thank you so much kind regards’.

If it’s not how you would speak to your ideal client IRL, don’t speak like that on your website either. My tip is to read your words out loud and if they don’t sound natural to you, change them.

No calls to action

I’ve seen some beautiful websites, and some very expensive websites, without any clear calls to action or even a simple ‘get in touch’ button.

Usually if you have a website, you want visitors to your website to do something once they are there – even if that is just signing up to your mailing list. 

Make it really easy for website visitors to complete this action, do not make them work for it!

No reference to problem and solution

Every business exists to solve someone else’s problem. Here are examples from myself, and my previous clients:

Problem: I don’t understand how to build a professional website and I don’t have time to learn, plus I find writing copy for my business too difficult.

My solution: I can create a professional website for you and write your copy.

———

Problem: I love honey, but I’m vegan and I can’t eat it anymore.

My client’s solution: I make vegan hunny!

———

Problem: My wedding day is going to go by so quickly, I’m not going to be able to remember it in detail.

My client’s solution: I can film your wedding so you can refresh your memory forever.

Often I see website copy that speaks about what the business provides, but does not phrase it in a clear client problem/business solution way. 

You don’t have long to convince a website visitor that you are the solution to their problem, so make sure you drive this point home in a clear and concise way. Don’t tiptoe around it, don’t imply it, just say it!

Do you need help crafting your website copy? You’re in the right place, drop me a message and lets see what we can create together!

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