Writing for the web is different from writing for print or social. It has its own style and requires a slight shift in tone. Here are our top tips to be successful in writing for the web.
Start with the “why”
Define your audience before you start writing. Who are you writing for? You might even think about one of your specific customers. How would you speak to them in person? Write your web copy the way you speak.
Define the goal you want to achieve through each webpage. Then, make sure your most important points come first. Answer the questions your potential customers are asking.
Make sure that your material is easy to scan. Only 16% of people read webpages word-for-word.
You can make your content scannable with clear headings, subheadings and bullet point lists. This will help people understand how to find the content they care about.
Keep the copy on your website as simple as possible. Don’t try to be too clever. At times, it may make sense to address your web visitors directly by using the word “you”.
Be concise by using short paragraphs. Aim for paragraphs that are four sentences max. Write short sentences for your website. Around twelve words/sentence is a good goal.
Run a readability test to make sure your text can be understood at a 7th-9th reading level.
Make your content actionable
Every page on your website should have a clear call to action. This helps visitors understand where to go or what to do next. Users should take action as a result of the things they view. For example, “View Menu” or “Contact Us”.