6 Tips for Writing Good Website Copy
  • 3-minute read
  • 8th June 2018

6 Tips for Writing Good Website Copy

The internet is a big place, with a lot of websites competing for attention. How, then, can you make sure that your website stands out from the crowd?

1. Get to the Point!

People have busy lives. If they’re looking for information online, they want it quickly. As such, each page on your site should clearly state what it is about.

If you are writing copy for a pizza restaurant, for example, you would want to say what kind of food it sells and where the restaurant is first, as these are the most important details.

An appetizing image will go a long way, too!

Should you have more to say, you can save it for further down the page!

2. Keep It Short

Short paragraphs are much easier to read, especially on screen. And since you’re not limited by page size with website copy, there is no reason to pack a lot of text into a small space.

The ideal length of a paragraph on paper is typically around 100-200 words. But even this is too long for online copy, where paragraphs shouldn’t be more than two or three sentences long.

You can even use single-sentence paragraphs, like this one!

3. Use Simple Language

There is a place for long, fancy words on the internet (especially in online Scrabble). But your website copy needs to be easy to read and you should keep your writing simple. This may include:

  • Using clear, concise sentences
  • Avoiding jargon and technical language
  • Using the active voice
  • Using shorter words where possible

For example, if you were selling lawnmowers, you could boast of offering “contraptions for the accelerated and efficacious reduction of Poa pratensis.” But it would be much better for everyone involved if you simply said “machines for fast and effective lawn care” instead.

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4. Format for Skimmers

How you format your copy is almost as important as what you write. In particular, you need to format your writing to catch the attention of skim readers. This means using:

  • Subheadings to break up the text
  • Bold fonts or other emphasis to highlight key words
  • Bullet points and numbered lists
  • Images and/or videos alongside the text

If your reader can spot key information thanks to formatting, this will keep them on the site.

5. Think SEO

When writing website copy, you’re not just writing for human readers. You’re also writing for search engines, as this is one way that people will find your site. This is where search engine optimization (SEO) comes in.

We won’t go into any depth about SEO here, as it is a complicated subject. But the basic idea involves:

  • Identifying key words for each page on the site (i.e. what people will search for to find it)
  • Working these naturally into your website copy

If you do not have key words yet, do a little research online to find the right ones for your site.

6. Proofread Everything

The internet is a Wild West for writing, with the rules of grammar, spelling, and punctuation often ignored. But typos on your website will look unprofessional. And if you don’t care about your website copy, people might think you don’t care about your business either!

As such, getting your website copy proofread before it goes online is essential.

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