Writing great web copy is one of the most important skills for writers today. And an interesting thing happens the deeper you get into web writing – you start to realize just how different it is from writing for brochures, whitepapers and other printed materials. It’s almost like a different language.
Although there are entire books written on the topic, we want to share four tips that you can adopt immediately.
1. No long mission statements on your homepage
When visitors first visit your page, they’re probably not looking for your corporate history, founding principles or executive bios. Instead, they’re probably looking for a specific piece of information, whether is about a product or service. So, keep your homepage simple, with links, short descriptions and calls to action.
2. If you want, you can ignore that old “three click” rule
There was a time when people thought every bit of information had to be three clicks or less away. Better web frameworks (and writing and design) have made that rule a thing of the past.
People are willing to click much more than three times to find the info they want. What they need are clear pathways to that info. As long as they can find what they want, they will have a great user experience.
3. Create more lists
Break up walls of copy. These days, people just skip over them. So if you have important information deep within a large paragraph, you can assume that it may not be read. Bullets, on the other hand, draw your reader’s attention and look good on screen.
4. Be gender neutral
There’s no need to write “either he or she can,” “he or she will benefit from” or a derivative of the he/she structure again. Wherever possible, just use “you.” Not only do you speak directly to your audience when you write “you,” you also guarantee that your copy is gender neutral.