All writers are not created equal. Just because someone is great at writing fiction doesn’t make them great at writing product copy. When it comes time to select a writer, it’s important to know what style of writing you are seeking. It’s likely you’ll want more than one flavor of writer — and that’s okay. Many writers fall under more than one category.
Freelance versus Agency Content Writer
Do you want to work with one person or do you prefer a team of people to weigh in on your writing? Is this a small project or a huge, year-long project? Both freelance writers and agency writers can provide great writing at reasonable pricing. It all comes down to your style and project demands.
SEO Web Writer
Search engine optimization hinges on web content and many web writers have made it their business to understand search engine behavior, new trends, and best practices. An SEO web writer will take special care to consider keywords and page descriptions. They’ll likely advise you on other steps outside your static web content to improve your SEO. Read More »
The following 99 web writing tips are geared to the content on your static web pages. These are for the pages that help you sell.
Customer-Centric Web Copy Tips
1. Follow the AIDA formula on every page (Attention + Interest + Desire + Action).
2. Outline your value proposition early on, maybe even in your home page headline. (A value proposition is a combination of what makes you desirable to customers and unique from competitors.)
3. Promise something. What will your customer get?
4. Filter out clients you don’t want to work with. Target ideal customers.
5. Show them the great work you do (for free). Give away a free ebook or whitepaper.
6. Generate excitement. Read More »
No one judges you for caring about the latest celebrity scandal. But if you’re like me, you judge popular magazines for creating unpleasant online experiences. Who wants to deal with all those extra bells and whistles on the page when there is gossip to read?
Below are some of the ways that magazines could improve. Business owners take heed: You should do the same.
Make it quick.
Experts say a site should load in four seconds or less. If it doesn’t, you’ll lose visitors fast.
I waited 17 seconds for this Esquire article to load. Maybe it was the six banner ads and the video that automatically loaded on the page that created the delay.
Speaking of videos… Read More »
Creating a business website means a balancing act where you include large amounts of information without overwhelming visitors. Keep your sites clutter-free, I say. With the right navigation and content organization, you can say all you need to say without overwhelming your home page.
The following animal rescue websites have the kind of clutter-free home pages that any organization would benefit from. Let’s take a closer look. Read More »
In fiction and other forms of literature every scene moves the story forward with an action. You have a series of reveals that keeps things interesting and keeps the reader turning the page.
This approach doesn’t usually translate well for professional website content, but it can work if you change your thoughts on standard web design and write casual, conversational copy. I know of two companies that have done this and mastered website content storytelling. But before I tell you about them, I want to first outline a few standard web usability rules, which say:
- Websites should contain multiple pages.
- Each page should serve its own function (e.g., services page describes your offerings and about page describes YOU, etc.).
- All web pages should be independent of each other. You never know what page a visitor will land on first — it’s not always your home page.
- Web content should sell the sizzle right away, not contain too many details, and focus on a strong call to action.
Now that you know the rules, let’s see two examples of professional website content that break away from the norm and have a strong storytelling appeal.
Read More »