When you first thought about putting up a business website, what was your first thought? If you’re like most small business owners, it was probably, “I have to hire a designer.”
And of course, a website needs proper design, minimally consisting of the following:
- User oriented, functional navigation
- Properly configured html tags that use keywords and phrases that help search engines understand what your site is about
- An attractive, modern appearance that incorporates your company logo and colours
Copy is just as important as design
But the other vital element a website needs is good copy, and it’s often the last consideration, to be dumped in right before the website goes live. As a copywriter, of course I think that’s completely backward thinking.
If you’re running a business, you’re trying to sell a product or service. The words you put on your website must be sales driven. There are specific copywriting techniques that are used to convert visitors to a website into leads or paying customers. If you don’t know these techniques, and you don’t hire someone who does know them, then you could leave a lot of money on the table.
Within that framework, neglecting the writing on your website until the last minute looks more like a critical mistake than a small oversight.
So at the very least, make sure you have these items covered:
- A strong positioning statement that lets visitors know how your business serves its clients
- A few examples of compelling benefits your customers experience that they can’t get anywhere else, presented in bite-sized, easy-to-read chunks
- Some longer copy that uses your main keywords and phrases
- A way to connect with you – social media links, blog subscription, newsletter signup form, contact information or form
What you don’t want: a bland, useless intro such as the infamous “Welcome to our website. This is how long we’ve been in business. This is our new manufacturing facility.”
If that’s how you begin, you really won’t have to worry about the copy after that point, because no one will read any further. They’ll be gone, checking out your rivals.