The whole point of creating a website, whether it’s for your business or a personal site, is to get people to see it. If it’s interesting they might buy something or else share it. But writing interesting, informative content is not the whole picture. The content must also be written to help people find your site in the first place.
When you put your time and effort into something, such as creating and developing a website, and you see little return it becomes frustrating and loss of interest and enthusiasm is a real threat. This is a shame because in reality it may only take a few small tweaks to achieve the success you’re looking for.
The problem is that even if your website design looks great your content could be letting the side down. Spelling and grammatical mistakes, or text that’s simply difficult to read will put visitors off. The result; lower viewer engagement means fewer shares which means fewer visitors, fewer links and poor search results. This isn’t a good situation for anybody. The website owner achieves poor results and the web designer looks bad, even though it may have nothing to do with them.
Just as bad, some people will pay to have a website developed, or develop one themselves, and then leave it virtually empty; lacking in content whether written or visual. Not only does this give the appearance of being unfinished, it also looks disorganised and disinterested. After all, why would you make an unfinished site live, if you didn’t care who read it?
The visual appearance of your site is important. If it looks nice people will be more likely to browse your website and engage with the content. But it won’t sell your products or services for you, unlike the written content which can, provided it’s well written.
Good content serves at least two major purposes. The first, as we’ve alluded to above, it sells your products or services to customers who visit your site. It highlights all the best features and informs the visitor how this particular product or service will benefit them. Secondly, it boosts online visibility. Well written, informative content promotes sharing which ultimately results in improved search engine ranking. The overall effect is more people are driven to your site and therefore you have a greater chance of selling your products and or services to them.
How to write good content
As soon as you can, begin considering what content to include on your website. If it’s a new build you can write the content whilst the site is in development. If you’re overhauling an existing site then decide which are the weak areas and start by strengthening them.
Firstly, you need to understand what factors about your product, service or business that is important to customers. Typically, this involves some form of research. Whether you conduct actual market research or simply plan it out based on experience will be up to you.
When it comes to structure, look to successful websites, both within your industry and in others, for examples of good copy writing. Check out the sales pages and look at how the information is structured. We know that the end goal is to guide us to making a purchase so we can use this to reverse engineer the content creating process and form a template for our own sites.
Next, you’ll need to decide on factors such as page length. Your pages should be long enough to provide sufficient detail without being so long that they put off readers. Obviously this is quite subjective but try this as a general way forward; write out your page then read it back. Now, remove anything which doesn’t address a specific point about the product, the business or the customer. This might make it read a bit choppy so now you should re-draft it to smooth it over, so to speak. Hopefully this process will help you write a concise yet informative piece.
The final stage of producing good content is editing. Read your piece several times and if you’re happy with the end result then make sure the spelling and grammar are correct and make it live. On the other hand, if you think you can do better then have a go at changing it. There’s no harm taking your time and making sure you write something you’re proud of. It can even be beneficial to enlist a second opinion, as sometimes the more you read something the less sense it feels it makes. Editing can be a repetitive process and time consuming process, but ultimately its important for ensuring you write high quality content that works for your site.
Writing good content for your website doesn’t have to be difficult. If you break it down into the fundamental stages you can create a clear progression from the initial idea all the way to the finished piece. Using a number of different sources for reference will help your writing, so too will practice and experience.
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