When you are creating web content that sells, it makes digital marketing easy. Your website and social media platforms turn into lead magnets. Your business feels like it’s operating on all cylinders. Everything is as it should be.
The trouble is reaching this level with any sort of consistency. Sometimes we are on top of the world with a backlog of online business, and other times you could hear a pin drop after you published something that you were hoping would go viral. Let’s talk a little bit about what’s necessary to allow your content to work for you.
Creating web content that sells doesn’t need to be overly-complicated. But it does require a consistent effort and some attention to detail. Do you have what it takes to up your content game?
Your Guide to Creating Web Content That Sells
Understand that Traffic Isn’t Everything – The last I knew, mortgage companies aren’t accepting web traffic for payment. You can’t plop over website visitors in exchange for goods and services.
Before you go following search engine optimization advice from 2009, you should pay attention to the actions your visitors are taking, and guide them towards conversion. This means that businesses need to resist the urge to keyword stuff their content. Instead, it’s important to focus on creating engaging content that will guide your reader through the process.
You’ll probably want to look at your blog posts as well. Some are likely in a more informative category that can help with brand awareness, but not necessarily sales. Others may be written in a way that they better promote your services. It’s important to write both.
I’ll use my site for a quick example. I’ve written a post on why your company could use a copywriter, that’s designed to help sell my services. I’ve also written posts on landing pages, sales letters, and website content designed to help sell my services. Posts on B2B or B2C copywriting strategies are more informative and educational.
Your blog is a significant component for online sales, but it’s not a get rich quick kind of tool. It’s more in line with losing weight. You’re not going to hit your target weight after one night without snacking after dinner. It’ll require a sustained effort and a more holistic approach. The same is true with blogging. A few posts on their own may not do much. But multiple posts over a sustained period of time can have a significant impact.
Even the informative posts can help you sell more by creating a higher level of brand awareness.
Know Exactly Who You’re Looking for – If this doesn’t seem like the most obvious point, it should. I’ve seen enough copy from the technology and healthcare sectors to understand that it bears repeating. Copy intended to grow a healthcare practice should sound different than copy written to doctors. Are your customers older men? Younger women? It will likely impact your approach.
If you still don’t know exactly who your target customer is, spend some time figuring that out. Google Analytics can give you a lot of information on your website conversions, and who’s buying. You can also spend some time looking at who’s filled out your web form.
If you’re new to business it may be a little more complicated. You can do some industry research to discover buyer demographics. Ask people you know who are already in the industry. Creating web content that sells means having a strong command of your audience.
Hook the Reader – I’ve seen some fairly uncreative headlines for website content and blogs over the years. I’ve also had clients where I run into resistance at the suggestion that we change it.
Welcome to Our Website
It’s Ok to let people know where they are on your website with the bottom two phrases, but they are not stand alone headlines. Give the reader an idea what they’re about to dive into. Make a promise. Provoke their curiosity. Showcase the key benefit. Give them a reason to choose you.
Your headline is the single most important piece of real estate on a blog or web page. Don’t waste it. Take some time and study what good headline writing looks like. It’s a significant part of what creating web content that sells looks like.
Write Engaging Content – The goal of each sentence is to keep the reader moving. Humans are natural storytellers. It may be time to look at case studies, or client examples that showcase how you can help solve a specific problem. Consider using your about page to expand on your origin story. How did you get where you are today? Why are you the best person to solve the customer’s problem? All of these are stories to tell.
It also helps to write in an informal, friendly manner. Picture yourself sitting across the table from your ideal prospect. If you start using industry lingo they won’t understand, you’d get immediate feedback in the form of eyes glossing over.
When you are trying to reach your customers through web content, make sure not to slip into this industry vocabulary.
Provide Real Value – Your reader has a reason that they landed on your page. They’re looking for something. Make sure that your pages and blog posts stay close to the point. If you hint that you’ll be answering a key question – answer the question. It’s best to be direct and to the point.
Make sure you are being thorough and providing the type of quality information that can make your post the authoritative resource for the problem. If you are writing a “how to” post, make sure that the steps are clear, and there’s little confusion on how to complete the job.
If it’s a complicated process, your reader may get fed up after trying step 2 anyway. They’re likely going to call you.
Use Emotion – It’s emotion that ultimately gets us to pull out the wallet and enter the credit card number. We want to feel safe/happy/satisfied. When your marketing convinces people that your product makes them feel better, you win. A key way to do this is to concentrate on selling the experience.
Nobody cares that a sports car has a V8 engine. They care how their hair feels blowing around at 85 miles per hour on the interstate. They don’t care what kind of specs their new computer has. They care if they can keep 20 browser windows open, watch a video and work on their PowerPoint presentation at the same time.
When you can convince people that your product makes them feel better, you win.
Testimonials – If you’ve done a good job selling your product, your reader may be wondering what the people who have already done business with you think. You can talk until you’re blue in the face about the benefits of your business. When your customers are willing to sell your product or services on your behalf, it’s going to have a tremendous impact.
Don’t be afraid to ask customers for testimonials. You can use them on your website, on LinkedIn, and Google My Business among other places.
Write a Call to Action – If someone made it to the call to action, you’re probably most of the way home. You can’t let off the gas just yet, though. It’s time to remind your reader of the current status quo, and how their life could be better with your product. Here’s a few examples:
You could go on opening cans the old-fashioned way, but it really is unnecessary.
Think of all the time you’re wasting, using that old copy machine to prepare for your business meeting.
You won’t want to go back to your work commute in a sedan after you’ve experience riding in a convertible.
Make sure that you’re doing everything you can to provide a hook for your reader. Learn how to craft a persuasive call to action.
Conclusion – Creating website content that sells takes trial and error. When you stumble on a post or a page formula that works, make sure you take a look at what worked, and see how it can be duplicated.
If you have any questions or would like to hire a freelance copywriter to help, contact me today!