Copywriting—10 Tips For Creating Great Website Content

You've got a beautiful website, but what use is that if you don't have great content on that website? 

Illustration of the different aspects of SEO

  1. Tone: find the right voice

Finding the right tone for your writing should be your chief concern when it comes to producing effective content. 

Firstly, what kind of business are you speaking for and how should the business be represented? You’re essentially a spokesperson for the company you’re writing for, so it’s essential you represent them appropriately. If it's your business, then write how you imagine the business itself would sound. If you're an employee, it's best to get the owner's impression of the company's tone before you begin. Think about what you're selling and who you're selling it to. 

While a relaxed tone with the odd wisecrack might suit a light-hearted blog entry for a bespoke bench maker, a graphic design company might not be looking for the next Stephen Fry to infiltrate their product description pages.

So, do your research. Immerse yourself in the business and learn its language. 

 2. grammar and punctuation Detail

Misplaced apostrophe’s can stand out like a sore thumb. There should be no apostrophe in apostrophes, for example. Unless said apostrophe is in possession of a hat or a mortgage or something. Which would be troubling to say the least.

This might sound like an obvious point, but it’s vital if you want to be taken seriously as a professional copywriter. Make sure your content is grammar, spelling and punctuation-error free. 

An old English lecturer once told me: write in fire, edit in ice. Not only is that a great line—one that makes me feel sad about the final season on Game of Thrones—it’s advice that can really help improve your copy. Write with gusto, get the content on to the page—but edit with extreme care and attention to detail. Businesses want professionalism; nothing flies in the face of that than a spelling mistake or clunky comma splice.

If you struggle to see the grammar issues for yourself we recommend Grammarly, a handy free tool which can spot things you might not have noticed. 

 3. Don’t try and be too clever

No-one likes a smart*rse. Even if you're attempting to convey complex or technical ideas, it’s in your interest to make things easily-comprehensible for the average consumer. While it doesn’t hurt to outline the intricacies of a full-colour print aluminium composite material sign—more important, is that the potential buyer can understand its benefits, in a language they can quickly digest.

In the majority of cases, clarity and conciseness will reap greater rewards than being clever. 

In the words of million-dollar copywriter Gary Bencivenga:

“Copywriters who show off their skills are as ineffective as fishermen who reveal the hook.”

4. Make the content look pretty

There’s nothing more uninviting for a reader than big clumps of dense copy. Think about the aesthetics of your work; use smaller paragraphs, use plenty of headings, and for heaven’s sake, avoid long-winded, meandering, convoluted, overly-wrought, unnecessarily verbose...sentences. 

 5. Find the right words

Often when you’re writing for a company, the framework of your posts might follow certain patterns. If you’re describing the details of a vehicle signwriting job for a graphic design company, it’s likely you’ve written something with similar content in the past. How many different ways can you explain the process, without repeating yourself? Be flexible. The English language is, if nothing else, versatile. There’re inestimable ways to rearrange and be creative with your writing. Handy tools like Power Thesaurus can help you in your quest to find the right word—or explain a familiar point in a new and exciting way!

 6. Imperatives are...imperative

Customer confidence is key. When writing engaging copy, avoid using watered-down, evasive phrases like we hope or we could— and replace them with strong imperatives like will and can. 

A well-established outdoor furniture company, who build stunning bespoke benches and swing seats, will have full confidence in their product, through years of happy customer relations. It’s important you convey that assuredness in your copy. 

7. Lies, damn lies and statistics 

An estimated 1 million dogs in the U.S. have been named primary beneficiary in their owners' wills.

As we have proved above, the injection of a neat—in this case, unrelated—statistic can really add depth and credibility to your writing. If you’ve got a point to make, why not take a little time delving into the internet’s many resource pockets and see if there’s a fact or data snippet that’ll strengthen your argument. Be sure to reference your sources or provide a handy link.

 8. Avoid distractions

Let’s face it, while smartphones are inherently useful devices, their primary function is to distract and encourage procrastination. If you’ve got a deadline or word limit to hit, why not either put your phone on mute—or better yet, plug it in another room. 

Some writers could work happily through an air raid—only occasionally peering out the window when the guttering has fallen into the garden—but for most of us, peace and quiet is essential when trying to focus. As best you can, try and create a tranquil and distraction-free environment to write in.

It might involve buying a sturdy bolt for your door.

Copywriting tips in a cafe with women and a man at a laptop

 9. ‘You’ not ‘We’

The most potent brand of content marketing and copywriting has its focus firmly aimed at the customer. While it’s easy to mentally switch off when reading a website that constantly talks about the company—engaging content will speak directly to the customer and their needs.

A general rule of thumb is to use ‘you’ at least twice as often as ‘we’ or your company name. This will naturally realign the emphasis towards your customer. Your copy will be stronger and more effective as a result. You is mightier than the We.

What were we saying earlier about grammar?

 1o. Have fun!

Writing, in its purest form, is supposed to be fun. The joy can often come from researching and creating content for a subject you might not ever have otherwise engaged with. There might have been a time when you didn’t know a thing about clear cast acrylic signs, now you could probably hold a conversation with an industry professional and not look completely out of your depth. Who knows what you’ll be writing about tomorrow?

So here’s the advice; whatever curious internet rabbit hole your research takes you, and whatever content you’ve been asked to cook up next: try and have fun!

Google Analytics on Tablet

Need Help?

If you're struggling to create engaging copy for your brand then why not ask us for help? We have a variety of clients in a whole load of industries so we can help you no matter what services or products you're selling. 

Whether you need help with a specific page or every page of your website, we offer copywriting by the hour or can package up a price based on your specific needs. 

Posted by Becky Cockman on October 26th 2020

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