A valuable product needs effective sales copy.
Even if the product or service is high enough quality, without good copywriting, no one will give it a chance. This tends to be the bane of many new businesses, as they focus on their product but neglect to market it.
Of course, it's not easy to craft good copy.
In fact, 40% of prospects abandon a website that takes longer than 3 seconds to load.
Fortunately for you, we'll be going through a helpful list of changes you'll want to make when auditing your sales copy and website for a high conversion rate.
If your headlines aren't attention-grabbing, they're not doing their job. Many online readers will skim articles and primarily read the headlines. If those headlines aren't attention-grabbing, the finer details won't have a chance of being read.
And, of course, you won't get any sales either.
So, how do you improve those headlines? The first step is to keep them simple. A fancy, hard-to-read headline won't motivate anyone. But the simple, to-the-point headlines will motivate readers to keep reading.
Next, you should make sure the wording in your headlines is attention-grabbing. They should still be simple, of course, but you should be promising a big benefit that appeals to your readers.
You should also try and word them in a way that compel the reader to keep reading on.
Here's a list of example headline archetypes that have been proven to work over the years:
Not every headline has to follow these archetypes of course, but all of these are proven examples of attention-grabbing headlines. As you can see, they tend to be simple and to the point, without trying to be fancy.
All you want your headlines to do is motivate your readers into reading the rest of your article.
Customers care about what benefits your business can provide to them. They don't care about your business's history or you personally unless it's directly relevant to them and makes you more credible.
Your copy should reflect this. Make sure that your copy shows that you understand what customers are looking for and that you know how they feel.
As an example, let's take this short, simple copy and improve it:
This is Daniel's Dogs website.
We were founded in 2017 and focus on selling dog food and dog accessories.
Our number is 555-555-5555 and our email is [email protected]
Obviously, this copy has lots of room for improvement, but in this example, focusing on the customer improves it significantly:
Do you own a dog and need to provide for it?
Do you need toys for your dogs, or food to feed them?
Look no further than Daniel's Dogs!
I own a few dogs myself, and founded Daniel's Dogs in 2017 to help out other dog-owners provide for their dogs.
We're here to serve you! Contact us at 555-555-5555 or [email protected]!
Neither of these is perfect, obviously, but in the second example, the customer can more clearly see that the business is for them, and the business seems much more credible.
By simply changing the focus from the business to the audience, you immediately boost the effectiveness of your copywriting.
Here are some strategies you can use to more effectively write for your customers:
This isn't every strategy you can use, but as you can see, generally you should speak specifically to a customer's desires and speak like they do while boosting credibility as much as possible.
Formatting is everything. That goes for landing pages, ads, blog posts, everything. Looks don't affect the quality of the content, but many potential readers will skip out on something that looks boring or hard to read.
Go back to point number 1 on this list. Imagine if instead of using the bullet points, we made our list in this format:
For your convenience, I'll go over a few different headline archetypes you can use. First, you could list the problem and solution in your headline, by saying something like "Fix X by doing Y!" Second, you could make a list by writing something like "Here are X reasons why...." Third, you could make a how to guide, with a headline like "How to do X." Similarly to a how to guide, you could make a success story, by writing a headline like "Here's how I did X." And the list goes on.
The content is roughly the same, but it just looks so much more intimidating to read. Plus you're much more likely to get lost mid-paragraph and forget what you just read because of how many ideas are presented at once.
Your readers don't want to read big blocks of text. They want something that's easily digestible and easy on their eyes.
How do you make your copy look better? Here's a list of things you could do:
Not only does making your copy look better draw more readers in, but it'll also raise your credibility a bit. Using extensive formatting will make your copy look more professional and the extra effort will be recognized.
A CTA is necessary when you want to close the sale. After reading all about your business, potential customers will be trying to figure out what to do next. If you don't have a CTA, they might go look elsewhere since there's no obvious way to progress the sale.
Once you have the CTA itself, you need to make sure it's an effective CTA. Use incredibly confident wording and be commanding. You want them to know that you know exactly what they want and how to get it to them.
How do you create a good CTA? Here's a mini-guide:
This guide doesn't cover every situation, and sometimes purposefully breaking rules can be used to great effect. Regardless, it's a good guideline to follow when you're not sure what else to do since most of the good CTAs will incorporate all of these points.
Investing in a business that you aren't confident in is a risky endeavor. However, if that business offers incentives that reverse that risk, you'll be much more likely to convert cautious people.
Most commonly, as mentioned in the previous point, limited-time offers, money-back guarantees, and freebies can stir people into impulsively investing.
When there's nothing to lose and everything to gain by investing, you can guarantee that more people will want to invest in the first place.
What do these incentives look like? You've probably seen a lot of these examples before:
It's a very easy concept to grasp, but incredibly effective. These incentives take some of the pressure off the quality of your product/service and copy by making people more impulsive. The fear of missing out is a powerful psychological tool, and all copy should be using it.
What does this mean? Well, for each and every sentence, you should be presenting exactly one idea. Limiting yourself to one idea makes sure that you get that idea across clearly and concisely.
This is something you'll see in all good copywriting. For example, take a look at some of Apple's copy. In this example, the iPhone XR's page on apple.com is the focus.
The first thing that say, front and center, is this:
"Brilliant. In every way"
Even if that neglects to mention every specific facet of the iPhone XR, it's an incredibly compelling headline that immediately piques people's interest.
From there, they say this:
"All-screen design. Longest battery life ever in an iPhone. Fastest performance. Water and splash resistant. Studio-quality photos and 4K video. More secure with Face ID. The new iPhone XR. It's a brilliant upgrade."
Apple uses many short, concise sentences that convey exactly one important idea. And all of these ideas are huge selling points for the iPhone XR. Even if they don't get into the technical details until later, they've already convinced many people from that description alone.
Their introduction to Liquid Retina does the same thing:
"Introducing Liquid Retina. The new display on iPhone XR is the most advanced LCD in the industry. An innovative backlight design allows the screen to stretch into the corners. So you see true-to-life color from one beautiful edge to the other."
They clearly state that the display is the "most advanced LCD" in the industry, then they go on to explain why that matters. Customers only care about the benefits, so this is exactly how you connect with them.
All of their other points follow a similar format, describing a feature and what benefits those features have. They throw in technical details from time to time that add credibility, but those details aren't the focus of the points.
Not all products or services are controversial, but some will be. In those cases, you should argue for why your product or service is worth it. At the same time, you should also be arguing against naysayers and their objections.
If people aren't completely on board with your product, they might not invest in it. Countering reasons to avoid the product helps reassure them.
Going back to Apple, let's look at the iPhone XR's lack of a home button (like the original iPhone X). Some people might be worried that the phone would be clunky without it. Apple directly counters this:
"No Home button? No problem. You can go everywhere you need to go with a few simple actions."
They then provide a link to show you exactly how the gesture-based menus work. Apple is saying that the perceived problem is not a problem, and then showing why. Their demonstration is great too, using wording that emphasizes how easy the gestures are to use.
In essence, by reducing the reasons to not buy a product, you directly increase the reasons to buy a product. And, of course, more reasons to buy means more buyers.
Great copy needs a great website/landing page. If the website is clunky or doesn't work right, the copy won't work right either. The website will completely undermine your beautiful copy.
How exactly do you fix that, though? Here's a list of things to consider when auditing the website:
This isn't everything, as there are many more technical details that could be mentioned. However, as long as you're confident that your website is following these guidelines, it should be fine. Users don't want to use an ugly, non-functional website.
Even if the offers are great, a bad website can undermine your credibility and steer people away.
Even if your website or copy isn't perfect, if it's better than the competition, you've got the advantage. Because of this, if there's an area you can improve and become better than the competition, you should do exactly that.
In order to do this, you need to consider a few things.
First, you need to know how your demographics compare. Then you need to analyze backlinks to determine what industry your website is targeting. Finally, of course, you need to know who your competition is and all of their "scores" too.
There's a huge number of tools out there you can use to make this process easier:
If you can find a weakness in the competition that can be exploited, you'll be in a great position.
Even if you aren't the best overall, having one particularly strong niche can give you the edge. It's all a matter of actually finding those weaknesses and figuring out how to best exploit them.
It can be hard to figure out why your website isn't selling as much as it should be. But at the very least, with this guide, it should be a lot easier.
A good website with great copy will be exponentially more successful than a website that's lacking in either department.
And even if you still aren't confident in making great copy or don't have the time to make it after reading this guide, you can always hire a digital marketing consultant to ease the process.
The luxury of working from home is counteracted by the difficulty of managing your website. But at the very least, it doesn't have to stay difficult forever. As long as you know where to look for help, you can get through any tough situation.
Speaking of help, if you're looking for some guidance, advice, or copywriting help from a marketing strategy approach, you might want to take a look at our portfolio.
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