Writing content for your website can be tricky. You think it will be easy, I mean it is your business, you know what you do. You figure it will take half a day, at most — but it quickly becomes the bane of your life for weeks. In this guide, we will look at 6 tips that will make the content writing process a little easier.
1. Don’t Write for You, Write for Me
Not me personally, but write for your audience. You may think you are already doing this but, take a step back and really consider if your writing is for you or your audience.
We like to imagine our audience as someone who has very little understanding of the internet. Sure, they browse social media and watch cat videos, but when it comes down to things like browser cache, they have no clue what that is or where to find it.
Are you a plumber trying to reach homeowners and property management companies? Your content needs to be written for your audience. They don’t care about they type of tools you have, they care about the quality of work at a value.
The goal of your website isn’t to make you feel good about yourself. It is to solve a problem or meet a need for someone else. So, write as if you are talking to them, not pitching yourself at a networking event.
2. Make Your Content Scannable
People don’t read websites, they scan them. When you write, try to keep your paragraphs short (between 2-3 sentences) and make good use of visual indicators like subheadings, bullet points, and spacing to break up your content.
Ideally, someone should be able to skim the pages to get an idea as to what is being said. Then, if they are interested, they can decide to read in more detail.
You want to move your content away from a wall of text, and make it more engaging.
3. Accompany ‘We’ and ‘I’ with ‘You’
The most useful tool you can use to make sure you’re writing for your audience is to make sure that there are more “You”s in your text than “I”s or “We”s.
Anytime you hear yourself saying something like, “We’ve been in the business for 30 years”, try to turn it into something like, “You’ll be working with someone you can trust, we’ve been in the business for 30 years.”
Anytime you use a “We”, you want to accompany it with what is in it for them. Your audience needs to be the focus.
Remember, we humans like talking about ourselves. We’re all guilty of it (I’m doing it now!) If you can be one of the few who really communicates with your customers, and not talks at them, you’ll stand out.
4. Write Before the Design Begins
Most people think that they need to see their website designed before they can add content to it. After all, how do you know what to write when you don’t know where it is going?
The problem with writing your content after the design has been completed is that you’re not going to write what’s best for your website, or worse, what you write won’t fit into the space, and you’ll need to get the whole page redesigned.
You will get better results by supplying your designer with content before they work. They’ll be able to use your wording as inspiration for the design. Maybe they read it and think the content will work best as a list or with specific illustrations. Your content will have the opportunity to have a personality and connect with your audience.
5. Don’t Try Too Hard to Please Google
Google has grown a lot and continues to get smarter. Gone are the days when ranking higher in Google meant following a rigid formula. Not only does it know when you’re writing for SEO, but you may also be penalized for stuffing your content with keywords — even if they are relevant.
Again, write for your visitors, the content they want to read, and you won’t go wrong. There are plenty of other things you can do to help people discover you organically (through search engines).
6. Don’t Be Too Clever
Try to write as simple as possible. Don’t be too clever.
Due to the scannable nature of the web, people cover content quickly. If they have to decode what you’re trying to say, they won’t stick around.
When you’re writing your content, pretend you are trying to explain it to a child who has places to go and things to do.
Improved lead conversion within 1 month or your money back
is a lot easier to understand than:
Convert website traffic to customers within 1 month time period or we will refund your money in full
Keep it simple, and as short as necessary. You don’t want to alienate your customers, you want to relate to your customers.
Writing your content is going to be tough. Don’t worry about making it perfect, you can always go back and make changes as needed.