Being an effective website copywriter is not a skill that comes naturally to many people. By taking heed of these five tips, you'll make yourself a more effective marketer by improving the quality and persuasive power of your copy.
1. Identify True Benefits. One of the first lessons of good website copywriting is to focus on benefits. But many website content writers never figure out how to determine a true, compelling benefit from mere fluff and filler. So what's the key?
Knowing the customer. And, more specifically, knowing what the customer wants and is motivated by at a very deep level. Drill down to the heart of the benefits you identify. When you hit on a benefit, ask yourself this question: "What is it about this benefit that satisfies my customer's deepest wants?" That question will produce a new benefit, one which better reflects the customer's core-level motivation.
2. Cut the Fat. Many website copywriters make the mistake of rambling. When it comes to online copy, your goal should be to engage the reader as quickly as possible. This rule of brevity applies even to product sales pages, which are notoriously long. Just because copy is long doesn't mean it can afford to contain unnecessary words or sentences.
Every word should sell – every element of the copy should be pulling in the same direction, towards the Most Wanted Response. If any part of the writing doesn't compel the reader towards the Most Wanted Response, it should be rewritten or ruthlessly cut.
3. Tell a Story. Telling a story is one way to create a strong emotional reaction in a reader. People tend to buy from those they like, and they tend to like those they feel they can relate to through personal experience. Painful experiences, in particular, have a unifying effect on people.
This is particularly clear in the case of product sales pages. Products solve problems (at least, good ones do). Those problems can be expressed in the form of a story, as humans have a natural tendency to appreciate narratives. Furthermore, most people in a target market, who share a common problem, also share a similar story.
If you can reflect that story back to the target market (including the happy ending brought about by your product) you'll instantly have their attention. And not only their attention, but their trust – you'll be seen as someone who understands their pain and offers a solution.
(It should be noted, however, that this is not a technique of manipulation. Your product better actually do what it says).
4. Spike Emotions. Spiking emotions is key when it comes to selling. Even when it has good logical reasons to back it up, a purchase is typically an emotional decision first and foremost.
Consumers decide to buy based on how they feel, then they rationalize the purchase with logic (it's when the emotions and logic don't match up that "buyer's remorse" results – which leads to a high return rate if you're selling online).
Some website content writers focus too much on the logic of convincing a reader to want something. But wanting is an emotion, not a logical decision.
So how do you spike a reader's emotions? The tips above should give you some hints. Focusing your copy around compelling benefits will force the reader to probe deep emotions related to the problem and the product.
Telling a story achieves the same end, as the reader remembers the pain caused by the problem in his or her own past and imagines the possibility of an end to that pain.
5. Create a Compelling Offer. If you're writing web copy for someone else, the offer may be out of your jurisdiction. However, a good online copywriter should always advise a client to help create a compelling offer. Shoppers expect discounts online now, so it's important to ensure the perceived value of what you're selling is much higher than the actual price.
This can be achieved through offering free bonuses with your product. Other elements that can be used to create a great offer include a long guarantee period, a free trial or a better-than-100% guarantee.
In online business, it's always best to focus on what you do best and outsource the rest. If copywriting isn't an in-house strength, you can look to Premium Online Writing for top quality website copywriters when you need them. Contact Us today for more information.
Author: Tom McSherry
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