One of the most difficult things for any business owner can be putting together the actual content for their website. Translating knowledge into write-ups for a website is generally more difficult than it sounds.
Here are five tips in order of importance to help you write great website content.
1. Use Proper Grammar
Good grammar and punctuation is a basic requirement of anything you write. If you don’t have someone proofreading what you write, get someone.
You can use a friend who writes frequently, a college student majoring in English, or an online proofreading service. Remember, even the most experienced writer makes mistakes.
2. Remember Each Page’s Purpose
Write a short one- or two-sentence summary of the goal of each page on your website. Then make sure what you write for each page keeps that purpose in mind.
The front page of your website should let readers know who you are and what you do as well as entice them to explore your site further. The About Us page is where you can go into much more detail about your company.
3. Write for Scanning
Jakob Nielsen, renowned web usability expert, has found that sample websites score 47 percent higher in measured usability when the text was scanable. Scanable text involves some or all of the following:
• Use of headlines
• Relatively large type (I recommend a minimum of 14 pixels, although Google uses 13 pixels)
• Bold text for emphasis, but use conservatively
4. ‘You’ not ‘I’
Most of your readers don’t care about you. They want to know what’s in it for them. As a result, your content needs to be much more focused on them than it is on you.
One way to accomplish that is to count the number of times you write ‘you’ versus ‘I.’ Using ‘you’ frequently and I less so is an easy way to keep your writing reader-oriented.
5. Include a Call to Action
Jeffrey and Bryan Eisenberg are online marketing experts and the authors of Call to Action.
“Virtually all websites have a persuasive purpose; to get someone to subscribe, to register, to inquire or to buy something,” they wrote.
How do you get them to take that action? Ask.
Remember, the easier you make it for your website visitor, the more likely they are to take the action. Why tell them to call you? It’s easier for them if you link to your contact page that includes a fillable form.
The good news is that you’re working with a website, not printed material. It’s never too late to rewrite the content. So take these tips and rework your website’s content.
Tim Priebe is a public speaker, author, columnist, and the owner of T&S Web Design in Oklahoma City. He has been working on websites since 1997, and has experience in areas such as search engine optimization, blogging, e-mail newsletter marketing, and social media, among others. He regularly assists clients with their presence on social networks including Facebook, LinkedIn, Twitter, Google+ and YouTube.