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  • 10 Tips to Writing Web Copy that Attracts Visitors and Drives Sales

    Tuesday, May 3, 2016 by

    10 Tips to Writing Web Copy that Attracts Visitors and Drives Sales

    A good website should perform critical functions for its company, brand, or entrepreneur. This includes telling potential customers what product or service you are offering, why you are different (better!) than the competition, and giving them an easy way to purchase from you - or at least ask further questions. Behind the scenes, properly written websites boost your search engine ranking, act as the hub of your social media wheel, and establish you as a credible expert in your field.

    However, unfortunately websites are often poorly written, presenting visitors with a mismatch of endless paragraphs, random photos and graphics, and an overall confusing layout.  This undoubtedly causes them to abandon the page in favor of the next competitor’s.

    It’s not that business people can’t write well, it’s more so that they don’t know how to write website copy very well – a totally different animal. When designing a website and writing copy, it’s best to keep the AIDA strategy in mind, an acronym that stands for:

    A – Attract Attention

    I – Trigger Interest

    D – Create a Strong Desire

    A – Call to Action

    So let’s take a look at 10 methods to write clear, engaging, and persuasive web copy that customers will gravitate towards:

    1. Use concise text

    If visitors to your website see a vast amount of text in paragraph form, they’ll automatically tune out. Use short words, short sentences, and even shorter paragraphs. As a good rule of thumb, write your web copy and then cut the word count in half, and then in half again.

    2. Make sure your site is easy to scan

    When it comes to websites (and social media or just about anything online), people want to scan – not read. Research proves that only 16% of web visitors read text word for word and 79% just scan. So break up text with headers, subheaders, numbered lists, bullet points, and even different fonts to make the information easily digestible in chunks.

    3. The secret behind writing amazing headlines

    Since most people just scan your copy and site, creating compelling headlines is paramount. There is an art to it, but studies show that headlines with numbers (10 Ways To Write Great Headlines), those that promise to solve a problem or provide a benefit, play on words or common phrases, or use the tactic of negative knowledge (5 Things You Need To Know So You Don’t Get Audited By The IRS) perform best.

    In fact, a recent study shows that changing general headlines to something more specific and informational improves conversions by 41%.

    4. Eliminate fluff

    Use clear, no-frills language. Avoid the temptation to fill your copy with adverbs and adjectives. Always write in the active voice and have a professional editor review your copy.

    5. Be clear about what you’re offering people

    When someone goes to your web page, they should know within seconds exactly what it is you’re offering, what it will do for them, and your unique value or special offer.

    Along those lines, your web copy should always highlight a clear call-to-action, which simply and definitely leads them to the next step. It could be entering their email to get a free report, signing up for a product test, or any number of other special offers.

    6. Ask people what they want

    One of the biggest mistakes that marketers make is that they talk to their audience, not with their audience. Any good website should include opportunities for visitors to offer their needs, desires, and feedback. You can do this with surveys, questions, and pop-ups that give them some sort of incentive to share their opinion.

    7. Create a Frequently Asked Question (FAQ) section

    Instead of going on and on about your product or service in paragraph form, create a detailed FAQ section, categorized by potential customer questions, and clickable so it’s easy to navigate.

    8. Focus on how your business can benefit your customers

    Business people are so passionate about their own products or services that they tend to start listing all of the great features, but that’s either irrelevant to the consumer or downright boring. Instead, translate each of those features into a proper benefit for the consumer. Show how you can solve their problems, help them achieve their goals, and make their lives better; you’ve then surely created compelling web copy.

    9. When is the right time to bring up price?

    The time to introduce the topic of money or price is a delicate dance. You don’t want to list your price tag prominently because that could turn off visitors who are only looking for price and don’t understand the value, and that can make you appear money-grubbing. You also don’t want to bury information about price on back pages or you can be perceived as deceitful. To solve this, list price on secondary product or services pages, have a PRICING button on your main menu, and always list several packages or options for different financial commitments.

    10. Be human

    People want to engage with a real person, not a robot or a faceless corporation. Tell your story, show your passion, and feel free to write in a familiar voice – just as long as you stay clear, concise, and always appropriate.

    Before you even start planning out your website and begin work on your copy, you should map out your target demographic, identify exactly whom your ideal customer is, and write copy that revolves around their interests, lifestyle, and solving their problems.

    With these tips in mind, take the time to pull up your website and look at it objectively. You probably don’t need to rewrite all of your site’s copy, but by implementing these practices you’ll likely begin to notice a spike in your numbers – and profits.

    Speaking of being human, here at HostGator we're known for our award-winning 24/7/365 customer support. We'll help you get your website up and running, every step of the way. Click here to get started.

  • 5 Quick Optimization Tips That Will Skyrocket Your Website’s Conversion Rate

    Thursday, March 31, 2016 by
    Increase Conversion Rate On Website How well is your website working to turn casual visitors into browsers, browsers into engaged visitors and ultimately, into paying clients? If you’re like most professionals, you’re probably wondering how you can best maximize your website's potential. The good news is that even small tweaks to better optimize your website can help boost your conversion rates, increasing your profits exponentially. To get started, here are five quick tips to skyrocket your website’s optimization:

    1. Utilize A/B (Split) Testing

    There are very few “successful accidents” when it comes to web optimization, meaning you almost never just stumble upon something that works incredibly well the first time. Instead, professional web designers, SEO experts, and content developers preach the virtues of constant split testing, also called A/B testing. By pitting two different headlines, pages, graphics, emails or ads, etc. against each other, they can quickly determine which has maximum effectiveness with their audience – and will produce the highest conversion rate. For that reason, most businesses should have at least one A/B test running on their website (and with the rest of your marketing) at all times and carefully track the results. But setting up too many splits or A/B tests at the same time can get overwhelming and hard to follow – defeating the purpose of identifying which version is most effective and why. There’s plenty of expensive software that will manage your A/B testing, but you really should have to spend too much to get a great website conversion benefit. Try Optimizely, Visual Website Optimizer or even Google Content Experiments, which is built into Google Analytics.

    2. Make sure your website is simple, clear, and distraction free

    One of the biggest mistakes you can make is crowding your website with too much information, graphics, flashy functions and bells and whistles. I know it’s tempting to try to impress the website visitor (prospective client) with a host of information and options that demonstrate your unique value, but in fact, it’s counter-productive. One exception to this rule is if you’re using an info graphic that provides value to your customers for free. A prime example of this is this Ultimate Guide To Google Penalties info graphic I came across. If you take a look at the websites of the best brands and businesses in the world and you’ll notice they are all simple, clean, and follow the viewer through a very intuitive and easy path, including one call-to-action. Studies show that the more cluttered and the more options available on your website, the less effective your conversion rates will be. Stay away from stock images, unnecessary features, any text that is not one or two sentences long or in a bullet point format, menu bars with more than 4 or 5 items, and more than one big, bold call-to-action.

    3. Create urgency with incentive

    In 2016 and beyond, one of the most powerful tools to boost website conversions and drive consumer behavior is ephemerality - which is a fancy way to say that an offer, giveaway, sale, attendance at an event, etc. is fleeting or limited. This concept works so well because people’s fear of losing out is far greater than their perceived benefit of gain. Think about it – when you are looking at hotels online and the display shows that there are only two rooms left at a certain price, and ten people have looked at it in the last hour, you feel your pulse quicken and an urge to book it immediately. That’s also the whole premise behind Snapchat, which sold for $3 billion 2013 after only a handful of months in existence and now has 100 million active users daily. There are two forms of scarcity you can exhibit to ignite urgency with your web audience: showing that an item or service is only available in limited supply, or that it is only for sale or at a certain price for a limited time. You can even use both of these tools together to create a palpable sense of scarcity. So if you want to double or even triple your website conversion rates and spark your ROI, create urgency with fleeting incentives and limited offers on your site.

    4. Compare to your competition before the consumer does

    There is a certain psychological process a consumer goes through before they commit to buying your product or service, including familiarity, a belief in the benefits it will provide or problems it will solve in their life, trust, credibility, perceived value, etc. One of the last items on that “checklist” - even when consumers want to click BUY NOW is the impulse to shop around with your competitors to make sure they are getting a fair deal. Too often, that means they will leave your website and start “Googling” other products, services, companies, and options. That also means there is a very high chance they will use your website as a foundation for information on the road to making a purchase – from someone else. But the good news is that YOU can provide a cost or service comparison right on your website, filtering and presenting the information as you wish. Setting up a simple graphic spreadsheet to demonstrate the superior price, benefit, features and value of your product or service – and the shortcomings inherent with your competitors – will keep a significant percentage of “shoppers” from ever leaving your website, therefore boosting your conversion rate and sales exponentially. Web Hosting Comparison

    5. Focus on creating an airtight sales funnel

    Do you have a well defined and efficient sales funnel? Research shows that nothing plummets website conversion rates faster than not leading your audience through the logical sequence of the sales process or funnel. Of course, all sales funnels differ depending on what product/service you are offering, your audience, the cost and commitment you are asking for, and myriad other factors. But no matter what business you’re in, a well-planned sales funnel will lead the website visitor and potential client through the stages of familiarity, establishing trust, comfort, answering objections or questions, a demonstration or trial offer – all precursors to the sale. Generally people who practice SEO implement an airtight funnel as being crucial to their overall business. An efficient sales funnel needs to include a drip system of information, value, and problem-solving offers for those who don’t purchase right away, whether via email, social media, social affirmation, short video demonstrations, or other special offers. Consumer behavior studies show that most people need seven positive interactions with a brand, product, or service before they are psychologically ready to commit. But that can happen much more quickly - or all in one sitting, ideally, if you plan your sales funnel and integrate it into your website correctly.
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