Is your web copy helping promote your small business brand and sell your products and services? You may have a visually attractive website and intuitive and user-friendly navigation. However, if visitors are leaving your site after spending only a short time or failing to respond to your calls to action, something is missing.
If it’s time to revise your web copy, keep in mind that web readers are information seekers; they want to quickly understand what you offer. In fact, it just takes a few seconds for web readers to decide if they want to spend any more time on your site. You need to grab their attention right away and connect. Here are some tips to ensure your web copy does that.
Set goals: Copy can educate, entertain or enlighten. Decide what your goals are for the various sections of your website and create your copy accordingly. For example, if your goal is to educate, describe a situation that would be familiar to your audience and demonstrate how your products or services can resolve the issue. If you want to entertain your readers; tell a story or anecdote that underscores your small business value proposition. If providing information is your goal; cite and link to facts and figures that you find online in research reports and articles.
Write catchy headlines: Headlines have always had one goal on or offline –- to get someone to read your copy. Headlines that incorporate the right search terms for your small business offerings also can help you to be found by search engines. When it comes to writing headlines be clear and convey what the content is about. Also keep headlines short – around 55 to 70 characters is the optimum length to ensure that search engines don’t truncate them because they are too long. Along with brevity, use powerful words and cut out any that are not necessary. Finally make your headlines jump out with catchy and colorful adjectives where possible.
Understand your audience: Your copy should be a conversation with your audience. Address issues that impact your readers and also choose words and sentences that speak their language. You wouldn’t address a group of tech product buyers the same way you would speak to realtors. Be sure your copy resonates with the people you are hoping to reach and influence.
Gain trust: Buyers want to do business with companies that solve their problems. They need to know why you can meet their needs better than your competition. Case studies of customers you’ve worked with help to validate your offerings. Also provide a list of partners and affiliates.
Create a compelling call to action: Make sure your call to action is clear to encourage your audience to click through. Use strong verbs such as ‘act now’ and convey a sense of urgency so that readers are inclined to act as soon as they read your message. Your call to action also needs to communicate what your audience will gain by acting.
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It’s an honor to be among the nominees for the 2013 Small Business Influencer Awards. Voting is underway and continues until September 9. You can vote daily until then. We appreciate your vote!