Writing for the web
What you will and won’t find on this page
On this page, we won’t be talking about web design or search engines. Other people know more about that than us. Instead, we’ll simply discuss the kind of words you should use on the web page.
Break up your copy
Don’t write long passages of text. Break it up, using bullet points, indents and boxes.
If people want to buy your service or product, they’ll want to read lots of words about it. So write lots of words.
Reassure your readers
Cyberspace is full of scams, so your visitors need reassurance. Include certification marks, customer testimonials and product guarantees.
Make frequent links to other pages, or to other parts of the page. At the bottom of each page, you might add links to the top of the page, the preceding page, or other relevant pages (for example, an order form).
Make the navigation clear
Help visitors get around the site by providing a consistent style and easy-to-follow links.
Make it interactive
Make the page interactive wherever possible. Invite the reader’s participation (for example, by the use of the words ‘Click here’).
So this is where we say, “Got some web copywriting tips you’d like to pass on? E-mail us now.”
Don’t have an entry page
An entry page is one that says ‘Enter here’. The only sites that need one are porn sites. Entry pages are usually full of meaningless, slow-loading Flash graphics. They don’t advance your cause. Visitors want fast access to information, and Entry pages slow them down.
Don’t have too many photographs or graphics
Too many pictures slow the loading of your page. If this happens, readers will get bored and look for another page. So, while text is not particularly fashionable on the net, stick to your guns. Text-only copy loads fast – very fast.
Write with humour
People who surf the Net tend to be relaxed and iconoclastic. So keep your words light and cheery.
Include your contact details
Make sure you include a postal address, to reassure people. And leave an e-mail address so that potential clients can contact you.
Provide useful information
Your web site is a great place to provide public service information that’s relevant to your product or service. It’ll make people feel well-disposed to you. Here, for example, we’re providing free information about copywriting.
Don’t expect instant orders
People like to get information from the Web. They use it like a directory. But they’re unlikely to order until they know you better. So treat your web site as the first meeting. Use the site to make people feel at home.
Click here for more tips.