You’re able to attract visitors to your website, but why don’t your customers follow through and click your “Purchase Now” button?
Your online business is set up for success. You have a well-designed site that is interactive and contains all the information your potential client needs in order to sign up for your services. Your Twitter account has over one thousand followers and you have even created a blog. You’ve hired an SEO specialist, a designer and an accountant. As far as you know, your online business is up and ready to rake in the cash.
However, you may not be quite as ready as you think. All of these aspects of your business are important, but what is it going to take to get your visitors to actually do what you want them to? Whether you’re a web designer, a domain reseller or an online flower delivery service, you’re looking to turn a profit. Whatever your idea may be, consider the fine details that will convert a curious visitor into a lifelong client.
Writing persuasive copy is one major detail of your site that can make the difference between visitors and clients. Consider these easy tips when writing copy to turn your site into a revenue-generating machine:
Identify your audience.
Before you can begin anything else, be sure to know your audience. The general public is not an acceptable audience because it’s not realistic that every single person will see your site or be interested in your services. Instead, focus on a specific target audience. In fact, get so specific that you actually come up with personas within your target audience. Then, when you’re writing copy for your site, you can think: “How would Jim or Sally react to this? Would they want to make a purchase based on the copy I’ve written?”
When coming up with an audience, consider:
- Marital status
As you expand, your target audience may branch out. As this happens, add to your target audience, don’t eliminate it.
What makes you different from the rest?
Your idea needs to be different from the competition. In today’s market it’s almost impossible to start another business without having some sort of niche that will make you stand out from the rest. This may be a completely original idea or just a new take on an existing product or service. Whatever it is, be unique. Be sure to include these differences in the copy that you write. Make it easy for your visitors to see what makes you better than the rest.
You also need to think about what kind of problem your product or service is solving. Your idea should make life easier and more convenient for the consumer. In order for your potential client to pull out his or her wallet, they are going to make sure that what they’re buying will benefit them. This leads us right into the next step:
Use benefit-driven language.
Have you ever started a conversation with a salesperson with absolutely no intention of making a purchase, and then 10 minutes later you’re driving out of the lot with a new car? A good salesperson knows exactly what they need to say and do to make a sale, and more often than not, they’re using benefit-driven language.
Benefit-driven language is talking (or writing) in a way that makes the consumer realize the full benefits that they will personally receive from your product. Instead of just saying: “My product is cutting-edge and the best on the market”, you should say: “This product will give you the edge because of x features and y design”. This method shows the consumer that they personally need the benefits that your product offers.
Have a reason why.
Let your customer know the precise reason why they should choose you over the competition. With every feature or benefit that you offer, include a reason why. Every ‘reason why’ should be able to begin with the phrase “that’s because”.
Marketing specialist Eric Schulz used an example from Citibank to explain how vital it is to explain your ‘reason why’. Citibank tested a ‘reason why’ statement by coming up with two advertisements. The first said:
“Citi shopper can find you the lowest prices on over 200,000 name brand items”.
This offers a benefit but fails to give a ‘reason why’. The second advertisement said:
“Citi shopper can find you the lowest prices on over 200,00 brand items. That’s because our computers continually monitor prices at over 50,000 retailers nationwide, ensuring that you get the lowest price available anywhere”.
The results in the second advertisement skyrocketed. That’s because the Citibank customers could see the precise reason why they should use their services: “because Citibank computers continually monitor prices at over 50,000 retailers nationwide”.
Behind every piece of copy that you write for your website, think about the ‘reason why’ someone would choose you, and then include that on your site.
Make a personal connection.
You want your clients to feel important. You want them to feel that by choosing your business they have a friend that they can trust. Whenever possible, include the word “you”. Be sure to make your client feel like what you’re doing will benefit them personally.
One way to do this is to use active voice rather than passive voice. Quick grammar lesson: according to OWL Purdue, active voice means the subject of the sentence performs the action expressed in the verb. Instead of saying, “Our services can be bought by the public”, say “You can use our services to help you grow your own online business!”. The second example is much more direct and builds a personal connection to your client.
Another way to create a connection with your client is by building and maintaining trust. You want your clients to know that if anything goes wrong, you’re there to make things right. Explain to your clients what kind of support you offer. If something goes wrong with your service or product, what are you going to do to make things right? Include this in your copy.
Ensure a peace of mind.
Along the lines of offering support, be sure to give your clients something that will help them sleep at night. Testimonials do a great job of providing real experiences from other clients. When someone visits your site and sees testimonials, they know that you do in fact have happy clients that would recommend your services.
Offering some kind of money-back guarantee or free trial is another way to ease a potential client into making a purchase. Don’t make your clients sign their life away with a ten-year contract. This will only drive people away and leave you with unhappy customers in the future. These unhappy customers leave bad reviews and bad reviews leave you with nothing. Create reassurance from the outset.
No one is going to buy your product or service if the copy on your website sounds like a second grader wrote it. Proofread your copy over and over again to eliminate typos, spelling mistakes and grammatical errors. If you have it in your budget, hire a freelance editor to check your copy and fix any errors. If you can’t afford this, find a couple of friends who always use correct grammar and have them read through what you’ve written. Nothing drives a visitor away faster than using the incorrect form of “your”.
Poor grammar translates into laziness. In other words, your visitors will see your lazy writing and assume this lack of effort is consistent throughout your business. Take the time to generate copy that is well-written and error free.
There are other considerations to take into account when writing copy for your website, but focus on these easy tips and watch your visitors become clients. Always remember to find your audience, state your benefits and make a personal connection to your clients.
Look to some of your favorite businesses’ websites for examples of how to write efficient copy. Midphase.com is a great example if you’re looking for copy directed towards its audience.
Writing copy is a vital marketing tool for your business. Don’t lose visitors due to unpersuasive copy on your site. Let those creative juices flow and welcome your new clients with open arms.
If you have questions about how to improve the copy on your site, send us a Tweet @WestHost.