Writing brilliant copy for your website is a skill. In fact, we’d go as far as to say it’s an art form.
And the fact is, not everyone is a great copywriter. For some, the sight of a blank page prompts flashbacks to school essay writing… and that’s never a good thing!
If that’s you and you find yourself struggling to transfer your thoughts and ideas into the written word then don’t worry, our copywriting experts are here to help.
In this article, we’ve put together our 10 top copywriting tips to help you ensure your website content is up to scratch and you don’t get hit by the dreaded writer’s block!
Copywriting is crucial for a successful online business. The content on your website helps to convey your messaging, gives customers useful information, and can position you as an industry expert.
Writing blog posts for your website is a great way of offering users even more value, giving them expert insights and unique information, as well as helping to highlight your industry knowledge and expertise.
A good blog post will increase customer conversions, and one that’s optimized well for your target search terms can do wonders for your SEO too.
Let’s take a look at these 10 copywriting tips for beginners who want to improve their online content-writing skills and impress their audience.
Before you put pen to paper (or in this case, a finger to your keyboard) you need to do your research.
Research can help to transform the quality of your writing before you’ve even written a single word.
Start by researching the topics and titles you want to write about. Take a look at what your competitors are doing and think about the relevant topics that your audience will be interested in.
Once you’ve decided on a topic, research, research, and research some more. You want to ensure that your article is the best on the internet and to do that you’re going to need to ensure that your information is up-to-date and factually correct.
Making sure you’re as clued up as possible on the topic you’re writing about will ensure the finished product is up to scratch and provides users with the information they’re looking for.
Every brand, including yours, has its own unique selling point (USP). You will have spent time creating a brand that stands out from the crowd (we hope!) so make sure to utilize that within your copywriting.
Think about the style of voice you want to use – if your brand tone is more informal and fun then make sure this carries through into your blog posts too.
Adding personality will help users to connect with your content more and is a great way of ensuring your copy stands out from your competitors who may be writing about similar subjects.
Your headline is what’s going to make people decide to click on your article and read it. If it fails to grab the user’s attention then your copywriting has fallen at the first hurdle.
We recommend actually writing your headline last, once you’ve finished the rest of your content. This allows you to ensure your headline is an accurate depiction of the content of the blog post.
Keep your headlines simple and to the point and try to ensure they grab attention. Your headlines should highlight to users the value that your content can provide.
For example, if you’ve written a blog post on the best cat toys for kittens, which of these two headlines do you think is better?
Option 1: The Cat Toys Your Kitten Needs
Option 2: What to Buy When You First Get a Kitten and Don’t Know What it Needs.
It’s option 1 right? It’s short and simple, gets to the point, engages users, and clearly depicts the value they will get from the article. Option 2 however is too lengthy, doesn’t grab your attention, and isn’t specific enough for users to be able to determine if the article is going to be helpful.
Advice from the Experts
Top tip! Be sure to check out our dedicated article on how to write a headline for more expert advice on writing a winning headline.
There always needs to be a purpose behind your copywriting and more often than not, that purpose is going to be to solve a problem for your target audience.
You need to give people a reason to read your content and if you can show that you can solve one of their pain points, not only does it encourage them to read on but it also helps to build on your relationship with your audience.
Think about some of the problems your audience may have and how you can help to solve them. Now we aren’t suggesting you try and solve world hunger here, but starting small can have a big impact.
For example, if you sell Christmas decorations, your audience may not know how many lights they need for their Christmas tree. A blog post explaining the best amount of lights for common tree sizes will solve your customer’s problems, answer their questions, and you can link to your Christmas lights within the copy too. Everyone’s a winner!
We always say that people buy on emotions and that’s true for readers too. Users will be more likely to read and take action from your copywriting if you’re able to target their emotions.
When we talk about targeting emotions, they don’t have to be sad. While some brands may benefit from pulling at the heartstrings of potential readers, you can also tap into feelings of joy, excitement, and intrigue in your copywriting.
Think carefully about the emotions your audience will likely be feeling on your website. Will they be frustrated and looking for help? Will they be excited and looking for inspiration? Whatever it is you want your users to feel, write copy that will target and complement these emotions.
One of our favorite copywriting tips is to keep things simple. When you’re writing articles and blog posts for your website, it can be easy to get carried away and want to include everything in one go.
Online readers, however, have short attention spans and will be looking for content that can be read and enjoyed quickly and without using up too much brain power.
Strip back your copywriting and keep things simple, try to cover just a few key points in each article and, as a rule, don’t surpass 1,500-2,000 words per article.
If you have more to say on a topic, break it up into a series of blog posts and direct users to these for further reading.
Long paragraphs of text will be off-putting and you’ll quickly lose the attention of your readers. Keeping things short and simple will benefit you in the long run.
Speaking of keeping things simple, getting rid of filler words is important, especially when you’re writing for an online audience.
As we mentioned, online audiences often have less time and less attention to dedicate to your content and filler words can take up way too much valuable space in your word count.
When we talk about filler words we mean over-the-top adjectives and excessively long sentences.
Take a look at the example below of a sentence with and without filler words. We’re pretty sure we know which one you’ll find more engaging and easier to read:
Option 1 (with filler words): Taking a trip aboard one of our luxurious cruise liners is a sparkling experience for the senses, allowing you to experience the breathtaking and stunning beauty of the Caribbean all from the exquisite comfort of a luxury third-floor cabin room with a sea view.
Option 2 (without filler words): Taking a trip aboard one of our cruise liners is an experience for the senses, allowing you to experience the beauty of the Caribbean all from the comfort of our luxury sea-view cabins.
As you can see, the second option without a silly amount of filler words and adjectives still manages to paint an engaging picture for the audience, without sounding over the top and lengthy.
This copywriting tip links back to the very first one we mentioned in this list: research.
Because if you’ve done your research properly, you should have no problem backing up any claims you make in your copy.
Backing up your claims is important if you want your readers to trust what you’re saying.
A great way to back up your claims is to find stats and figures that align with the points you’re making and link to them within your article. You can also link to or reference other articles on the topic that support your claims and ideas.
Sometimes you have to do a bit of hand-holding when it comes to copywriting. What do we mean by that? Well, put simply, if you want someone to do something you have to ask them.
You can’t always rely on your readers to take the action you want them to if you haven’t specifically asked them. That’s where a call to action (CTA) comes in.
CTAs usually appear at the end of an article and signpost readers to a specific action. The action you encourage them to take will all depend on the aims you have for the content.
Do you want them to make a purchase? If so, point them in the direction of your product page. Do you want them to read more of your content? Then link other articles for them to read.
A strong and well-written call to action will help to boost your conversions and improve the overall chances of your copy reaching its aims.
This might sound like a strange copywriting tip but it’s one of the most valuable.
Once you’ve finished your copy, taking the time to read it aloud can help you to determine if it flows and reads well, or if you need to make any changes.
When reading your writing aloud, look out for phrases you trip over or sentences that don’t make sense when you read them back. You can edit these before hitting publish.
Advice from the Experts
Top tip! If you’re unsure about your finished copy, ask a colleague to read it over for you. Sometimes fresh eyes can help to spot any mistakes you may have missed and provide valuable feedback.
These copywriting tips will all help to transform you from a nervous writer to a wordsmith in no time at all.
Keep the list handy each time you’re embarking on a new copywriting project and you’ll see your content result in engaged readers and those all-important conversions.
To recap, our top 10 copywriting tips for beginners are:
- Do your research
- Add some personality
- Fine tune your headline
- Solve a problem
- Target emotions
- Keep it simple
- Get rid of filler words
- Back up your claims
- Include a strong call to action
- Read your writing aloud
Be sure to let us know how useful you find these tips, and if you have any copywriting tips of your own to share with our readers then leave them in the comments section below!