Direct Dialogue = Web Copy That Works.
To create effective Web copy, talk directly to your site visitors as if they were sitting across the room from you. Tell potential clients what you can do for them. The word “you” should appear frequently throughout your pages.
Use short, hard-hitting sentences in brief, two- to three-sentence paragraphs. Bulleted lists are excellent: they lead the eye down your page. And sentence fragments? Formal grammar may so no, but on the Web they’re OK — as long as they help make your point.
- Write as if you’re talking to someone.
- Use contractions (“where’s” instead of “where is”).
- Be informal.
- Use simple words. If a one- or two-syllable expression works, why use a longer one?
After you’re finished, read through the text and trim all unnecessary words. Web copy should be roughly half as long as a print version on the same topic.
Tell potential customers how your product or service will benefit them. For example, don’t just say, “Our syrup contains natural chocolate and sugar.” Try this: “Your recipes will win raves from your friends when you add our syrup with its natural chocolate and sugar.”
Keep your most important copy on the first half of the page (“above the fold” in newspaper lingo). Many readers won’t scroll down, and they may miss text on the bottom of your page.
Use your spell checker, but for the final analysis, read the page out loud to yourself. Does it sound like you’re really talking to someone, or is it stiff and formal?
Insert images that help to make the content more understandable.
Now that we’re clear, let’s write short, snappy copy that sells!