What does it take to write great website content? I’m going to show you! But first, my previous Rocks Digital blog post talked about your brand voice and how to use it in your marketing. If you didn’t read it, please go back and check it out now. (We’ll wait.)
OK, now that you’ve figured out your brand voice, let’s take a look at writing content for your business website – and how to craft it so you don’t put your readers to sleep, or even worse, send them clicking away to another site.
When you sit down (or stand up, if you have one of those cool standing desks) to write your website content, remember the following ABCs. I only go through H to make sure I keep your attention and so I don’t violate B!
A = All-inclusive.
Your website should house pretty much every bit of information you want the public to know about you and your company. A website is the face of your company online, and it’s where people go to learn about you. So give them all the info you can, but also be …
B = Brief.
Large, gray blocks of copy are BOR…ING. If you’re a longtime reader of mine, you might have noticed I almost never have a paragraph longer than four or five lines. (This ain’t academic writing and term papers, folks.) Online readers want short, digestible chunks because they read differently – and faster – on the web.
C = Customer-focused.
Just because your site has tons of information about you and your company doesn’t mean it’s really all about you. This is one of the most common marketing mistakes in the industry – talking all about yourself, but not taking your audience into consideration.
Sure, it’s great that you make the best milkshake blenders in the world. But how does that help your online visitor? What’s the WIFM (What’s in It For Me?) for readers to keep learning about you and maybe even contact you or make a purchase?
Compelling Website Content? Most DEF …
D = Different.
Armed with your unique brand voice, you can write your website content – confident in the knowledge that your company stands out from the competition. Not only can you write in a highly specific and hopefully recognizable way, but you can play around with your website and shake things up a bit. Add a page just for funny stories about your industry, or a page with fun photos from your office or factory or parking lot. Different and weird are good because they’re memorable.
E = Engaging
Most studies say you have 7 to 15 seconds to convince a website visitor to stay and keep reading before they click away. By trying to be all the things on this list you can help your chances of getting visitors interested and keeping them on your site. Make sure your site isn’t “one-note” – i.e., picture, text, call-to-action; picture, text, call-to-action.
Add some interactivity, animation, video, trivia quizzes, games … and of course, make sure they’re relevant to your company and your industry.
F = Funny.
OK, this one isn’t mandatory – but it helps. If you’re a coffin manufacturer, funny shouldn’t be anywhere near your website. That said, a little levity can humanize your business and make you seem more approachable.
[RELATED STORY: It was a highly humorous job ad on the company’s website that got me to apply for a position 1,400 miles away from home. I was impressed with the way they described themselves and figured the company culture was good. And after I landed the job, I ended up working with the guy who wrote the ad.]
Use Website Content to Show Where Your Heart Is
G = Giving.
Having a page of your site dedicated to your company’s charitable donations and/or community involvement also goes a long way with people. By showing them your contributions, they’re more likely to form a positive opinion of your business – and that could be one of the reasons they choose you.
H = Honest.
Be straightforward and transparent – people appreciate that as well. If your top product is out of stock, post a message on the product page that lets them know you’re working on the situation and will make it up to them. (Hello, discount on next purchase.) I’m a big fan of “truth in advertising,” and I’ll be super-loyal if a business treats me with professionalism and truthfulness.
Is your website content interesting, brief, and/or funny? What’s the most popular page/section of your website – and why? Post in the comments below. And please share this blog with your social networks if you found it interesting!