12 Steps to Great Web Site Copywriting!
Effective web copy writing (web copy) is all about the message and communicating that message. Great website copy is about catching the attention of the reader, then drawing the reader in, and finally persuading the reader to take some form of action. These 12 steps will help you achieve this.
1. The Headline.
This must clearly and concisely convey what benefit will be given with your product or service. Start off with words like How, why, which, who else, free, new.
2. The Opening Hook.
Your headline presents your biggest benefit or problem you solve. Your first paragraph has to further hook the reader and pull them into the letter.
3. Tell a Story.
People relate better to what you are telling them if there is a progressive flow between the cause and the effect. What the situation was. What the person did, and what the result was.
4. Features and Benefits.
Focus on the features and benefits. People do not buy a product or service - seriously! What they buy is what the end result is of what the product or service can do for them. If you can clearly articulate this you are half way there.
5. Unique Selling Proposition.
You must entice the person into getting the product or service only from you. You cannot just say better service or higher quality, those phrases are too cliched and have lost all meaning. Give them real examples. Try and work them into your story.
6. Establish your Credibility.
The best way to do this is to invite criticism, and be able to refute the charges. Being open and leave nothing 'hidden', only allows the user to gain trust. Giving testimonials is good. Quoting specific statistics on the use of your product or service is better.
7. Bullet Points.
Use them freely. People more and more tend to scan read what is before them. Bullet points summarize the information that they will be getting and provide a more direct way of satisfying the persons thirst for what you can do for them or sell to them.
8. Pricing and Bargaining Appeal.
A bargain is not necessarily a reduction in price. What you are trying to get across is the value of your product or service, and not the cost. If you had to buy 3 of your competitors products, in the same time it takes one 1 of your products to wear out, you can stress the durability. If there is lesser quality in your competitors products but greater turnover (and more purchases), than you should stress the reliability in yours. If theirs has a lower resale then yours, the person will get more money back at a later date. There are many ways to stress the greater value.
People enjoy a guarantee. Why? It may let them sleep better at night. It also builds trust with the person. Don't make it an inconsequential guarantee either. More people are going to notice a longer guarantee than a shorter one. After all, in todays age, people have come to expect guarantees to expire exactly one week before the product expires leaving them in the lurch. By offering a no questions asked, 100% money back guarantee for a good period, you are placing a great deal of faith in the product or service. Something that will not go unnoticed with the prospective customer.
10. Don't Decide Now.
No one likes to feel that they are being pressured into making a decision quickly. It is far more effective to let them over a period of time, to try the product or service out for a while and then decide. By that time they are usually so familiar with the product or service, that the 'deal' closes automatically.
11. Bonuses or Price Discount.
Human nature is to procrastinate. You need to provide an incentive to buy now. This can be done in many ways. You can show them the scarcity of what you have to offer. A Quality countdown on your order page of how many items you have left is effective. A price discount in a price sensitive market is a good way. If a bonuses or multiple bonus can be offered that give some real value to the person, this invariably produces results.
12. You Can't Lose.
Time to summarize all of the main points above to your target audience. If they are convinced of all of the above, and they get their money back if they are not fully satisfied, what have they to lose. Its a compelling argument to start ending on.
P.S. = Money.
Try and cover a few of the points in a PS at the end. The PS actually gets read first more times than the rest of the web copy. If you stress the money back guarantee, the bonuses or discount, the limited number of items you are selling. It is usually enough to provoke them into reading the rest of the copy.
These 12 steps allow you to tap into the fundamental principles of human behavior. The more of these steps you incorporate into your web copy the more successful it will be. For custom websites that are designed to focus on your target audience, give Flying Cow Design a call or request a proposal today.