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Write your way to website success
by Kevin Nunley
If you have an online business, chances are you've used email for marketing. Email is a popular and effective choice, but more often than not, they send people to your website where the real selling takes place.
IS YOUR WEBSITE READY TO SELL?
Even the best products and services can fail miserably if your site has bad copy. To help you improve the power and persuasion of your website, here are a few hints.
GET BACK TO BASICS
Begin by printing out all pages of your web copy. Then, grab a red pen and go to work, correcting any mistakes in spelling, grammar, or punctuation. If you don't feel you have the expertise to find all those little mistakes, have someone else do it for you. Unless you have a degree in English, you're likely to miss something.
Now, some of you might be thinking that most people don't notice or concern themselves with grammatical errors in your web copy. It's true that some people won't notice or won't care, but many people will notice, and those little mistakes can quickly create a gaping hole in your credibility.
GET A SECOND OPINION
The value in this is simple. If there's a sentence or paragraph that doesn't clearly explain what you're trying to say, you're less likely to notice it than someone who really NEEDS the information. So, ask a friend or expert writer who is unfamiliar with your business to read your copy carefully and point out anything that isn't perfectly clear. Your potential customersneed to have a clear picture of what you're offering if they're going to buy.
IT'S A JUNGLE OUT THERE...BUT YOUR WEBSITE SHOULDN'T BE
Next, consider the length of your copy and how it's distributed. Do you have ALL your information on one l-o-n-g page? Does your main "overview" page include minute details that people don't really need, at least at first? Copy that is too long, boring, or hard to navigate will send tour prospects packing.
Your main introductory page, for instance, should give a BASIC overview of your product and tout its major benefits. On this page, include links to pages where more detail can be found, such as testimonials, ordering info, and features you want to mention but aren't important enough to list on the main page.
If your pages must be long, be sure to use lots of headlines and bold text to highlight your main points. Many people will skip down to the parts which look the most important, so make sure they stand out. Also, include a link to your order page near the top, middle, and bottom of each page. Placing order links throughout your copy will help you capitalize on buyer impulses.
I can't tell you how frustrated customers become when they have to search your site for 5 to 10 minutes to find what they're looking for. People will leave if they feel lost, so be sure to provide obvious links to all your other pages to help people find their way around.
Overall, be sure your copy is professional, credible, easy to read, and simple to navigate. Your bottom line will thank you!