An appealing design will pull people into your web site, but it’s the content that will make them stick and become buyers. In other words: Pictures tell, but words sell. That’s why your content is one of the most important elements of your web site.
Outlining a clear strategy for your content is the initial step to creating effective content for your web site. First, identify what you want to accomplish, what information it will include and how the content will be organized.
Your site should provide information your prospects need to know to buy from you plus information you want them to know that will convince them to buy from you. Need-to-know-type content for potential customers might include information about your company, products/services, customers and testimonials.
Information that you want them to know might include work samples, frequently asked questions, press releases, reports, articles and other material that can educate them about your business. And don’t forget to include a clear and effective marketing message that will convert visitors into buyers. After all, isn’t that the primary reason for having a web site?
While your content must cater to site visitors, it should also be strategically developed for the best performance with search engines. So be sure to include the right keywords in your regular text, meta tags, headings, etc. The goal is to make your content appealing to site visitors and search engines. If you optimize your content effectively, you can keep a steady stream of free traffic flowing to your web site.
Web Content Writing Tips
One of the most important things to remember when writing content is this: Keep it simple and clear. Most people find it 30 times harder to read text on a computer screen than on paper. Also, site visitors tend to skim over web content, focusing on headlines, bold text and links. So be sure to format your web content so the information is easy for people to find, read and understand.
Here are seven smart ways to create effective Web content:
1. Be concise.
Cut out extra words in sentences, get to the point and express what you need to say quickly.
2. Be conversational.
Don’t use complicated words or business language no one outside your industry will understand. Just write the way you talk, so your copy will convey a friendly, comfortable and confident tone.
3. Write in small chunks.
Group ideas by topics and present them in small, manageable chunks of information. Keep your sentences as short as possible and vary the lengths so you hold readers’ interest. Then add descriptive, bold headings that will make the content easier to scan.
4. Give good information.
Most people go online to find information about their hobbies, products or other interests. Don’t waste their time by placing useless, self-serving content on your site. Make sure you provide information that’s not only interesting, but also educational and enriching. (In fact, many search engines won’t consider listing sites into their databases if they lack useful information.)
5. Use descriptive links.
Go beyond the typical “click here” link on your Web pages. Try something like: “Take our demo,” “Get a sample,” or “Order now!” Not only is this more engaging, but it can enhance your performance with search engines.
6. Link to complementary Web sites.
Include links to Web sites that offer supplementary (not competing) information. This will not only benefit your site visitors, but it also can boost your search engine ranking.
7. Keep your content fresh.
Keep the information on your site interesting and updated so visitors will have a reason to come back.
About the Author: Copyright 2006, Kate Smalley, Connecticut Secretary, http://www.connecticutsecretary.com, firstname.lastname@example.org. Transcription Services and Freelance Secretarial Support Services.