Web Design V Web Copy
In this blog post we discover which is more important: Web Design V Web Copy?
Most people starting a business have limited funds and think they can’t justify hiring a copy writer as well as a web designer. So, they choose one or the other. BIG MISTAKE.
As a Web Designer, I can build you a stunning website, but if the copy is poor quality then a stunning design means nothing. No one has time to deal with poorly written copy, long blocks of text or bad grammar. Even a good web site won’t keep your visitors interest.
Likewise, you could have funny, punchy, informative copy. But if it’s not placed correctly on the website or the information is hard to find then no one will ever read it.
Let’s find out how to incorporate great web copy into your website…
7 web copy elements that your web site needs
Make it obvious what you do
When people land on your website they won’t immediately read through it like a book. They will skim it.
You only have a few seconds to make an impression when a visitor lands on your site. If they can’t see immediately what it is you do then they will leave.
Visitors need to quickly identify what you do. This isn’t the time to be airy-fairy. You need to be straight to the point – simple, specific and direct!
Focus on the benefits just as much as the features
A feature is something your product or service has. An example of a feature could be that the bike you’re selling has 24 gears.
The benefit is the result or outcome that people will get by using your product/service. So, the benefit would be that as the bike has 24 gears, you don’t need to struggle about cycling uphill – you can use the lower gear. Taking the benefit even further you could say that the bike is easier to ride, more comfortable etc
When I land on a website I get drawn in by the benefits. Whilst it’s good to know the features of a product, what really builds a connection and the need to buy is hearing how that product is going to benefit me.
Break that content down!
There’s nothing worse than landing on a website and just seeing massive blocks of text. It is just not appealing…. trust me, ain’t no one got time to read that! If I land on a website that just has blocks of text, you can guarantee I will hit the back button.
A good web designer will display text in a variety of ways, to make sure it’s easy on the eye. However, it’s good to remember this rule when writing the copy for your site.
Make use of headings, add images that show what you are trying to say, use quotes, one liners, video…. anything that breaks the text up.
Breaking the content down will enhance the User Experience and keep visitors on your site.
Less is more!
People think they need to have reams and reams of copy on their site but as I already said, people don’t have time to read through huge blocks of text. By simplifying your copy, you increase the chances of readers understanding and retaining the information.
Only write as much as you NEED to write. Don’t be tempted to waffle on just to sound more knowledgeable.
Look at the home page of Ruth’s website below. It’s clean, not too much text and doesn’t scare you off! The lack of text actually makes it more inviting.
Punchy one liners
I like to dot one liners throughout the sites that I build. They are an effective way of delivering information FAST. A well written tagline can clarify your company’s message and help move your visitor deeper into your site. It’s about enticing them to carry on reading.
Write for SEO
The copy on your site isn’t just about telling visitors what your about. It’s also an opportunity to improve your SEO with Google. It can be tricky to blend good copy with keyword focused content. That’s where an experienced Copy Writer comes in.
Did the mention of SEO just scare the beejesus out of you? Grab my guide “The Ultimate Beginners Guide to SEO”
Ask for the sale
It’s no use having well written copy throughout your site if you don’t actually ask for the sale! In the web business we call these Call to Actions (CTA’s). So, when writing copy, always write some CTA’s too.
Evernote is a great example. The tagline is straight to the point and their CTA is clear.
And the winner is……
Drum roll please….
It’s a draw! Good web copy is just as important as good web design. They go hand in hand (think cookies and milk, jam and toast, macaroni and cheese…I could go on!) You can have one without the other but BORING! Having a good blend of copy and design is like cookies & milk…. gooey delicious goodness that keeps you coming back for more!
So, if you want to truly have a website that rocks then you need both a Copy Writer AND a Web Designer. Your business will benefit in the long run. The proof is in the pudding (or sales!)
Gemma Forster is a North East Web Designer who aims to provide clean, responsive and affordable web sites. She believes that small businesses shouldn’t have to pay a small fortune to get their site off the ground.
She runs the Facebook group Gemma Forster Web Design – HELP & SHARE which aims to bring together small business owners and freelancers who have a shared interest in building their web presence, increasing their web traffic and generating more business from their website.
Struggling to understand SEO? You can download Gemma’s freebie >> The Ultimate Beginners Guide to SEO