When it comes to writing for the web, we’ve all heard the terms SEO, keyword density, and optimization. But then you find yourself staring at a blank screen, wondering how it all comes into play and trying to come up with the right words. And it can be more than a little overwhelming. This is especially so since copywriting trends always seem to be on the go. It’s important to keep up with the ever-evolving trends of search engine optimization or SEO copywriting, but basic writing principles are as relevant as ever. Let’s go over a few important things to keep in my mind as you’re creating copy for your website or a brand presence on the web.
- The Content is Your Priority – Never think about SEO or keywords first. Focus on writing relevant and high-quality copy, and then you can optimize it later with keywords and effective titles/headings. A good place to start is to consider your target audience and what would be helpful to them. Effective copy should engage your audience and keep them coming back for more. If your sole focus is on SEO and keyword-dense copy, then your content will probably suffer. There should always be a valuable take away for your visitors, or they’ll go elsewhere.
- Be Specific – The more specific, the better. This writing principle holds true even for web copywriting. If you’re too general and vague, then your copy isn’t going to stick with your visitors or engage them in the first place. The more specific you are, the more likely you’ll get someone’s attention and seal a connection. The goal is for your business or brand to resonate with them, so they will return in the future.
- Could Less Actually Be More? – Maybe you remember being told in the classroom that writing should be concise and precise. This just might be the single, most important principle of writing. Just because you’re writing for the web doesn’t mean sloppy copy is excusable. Recently, there seems to be a gradual shift favoring less copy and more images. Some companies prefer the route of short, sweet and to the point. So what’s the rationale? Businesses don’t want to bog their customers down in repetitive or unnecessary copy, so the focal point of their website becomes the graphic design with touches of concise copy. It makes sense, since oftentimes people think wordiness strengthens writing and this couldn’t be further from the truth. You lose your reader along the way with wordiness.
- Don’t Be Afraid to Make Updates – Writing of any kind often undergoes multiple revisions. Think of web copy as dynamic, too. Make sure your website stays relevant with frequent updates and revisions. At times that might mean improving or adding to existing content, and other times it might call for a complete revamp.