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Words Are Free; and When Used Properly on Your Website, They’re Priceless!

Unlike traditional media where you’re working within the confines of ad space or airtime, websites aren’t limited to word counts. You’re not being charged per word, so you’ve got a lot of freedom as you develop your website’s copy; but how you use and organize those free words could be costing you…a lot!

For anyone who requests it, I provide a no-cost website analysis where I look for several, very specific elements to help determine your website’s effectiveness as it relates to your specific, individual goals.

Here are just some of the questions that I look for in your website’s copy:

- Is what you do or the solutions that you offer absolutely clear to your website’s visitors?  I know that this may seem a bit obvious, but in conducting an analysis of websites for clients, I’ve often had to click through several webpages before I was able to finally figure out what the company or organization actually does.

- Do you have a clear and strong call to action?  Strong calls to action include “Buy Now”, “Donate”, “Call Now”, or “Get An Estimate” buttons that are placed prominently (and in more than one place) on the website. Strong calls to action are specifically crafted to make a website visitor take the exact action that you wish for them to take. It’s essentially the purpose of your website. Weak calls to action are things like “Learn More”, “Read Our Story”, and “Get To Know Us”. While it’s absolutely fine to include this information on your website, how you organize your content is critical to your website’s success. Your call to action needs to be clear, concise; and when taken by a visitor, the result of the action needs to matter to you and potentially to your bottom line. It should not be an action that serves to merely educate your visitor.

- Is there a value or benefit statement associated with what you offer or what you do?  For example, does your website immediately tell me how will my life be better as a result of taking advantage of what you offer or what you do?

- Is there a clear statement of the possible negative consequences of not taking advantage of your offer or service?

- Are the steps that are necessary to work with you clear and simple?

- Is your landing page so cluttered with information and images that what you are offering gets lost in the shuffle?

- Does your verbiage comply with SEO best practices?

- Does the imagery that you’re using properly reflect your core customer?

- Is your website’s overall content more about your customer or is it more about you?

- Does your website’s layout and flow offer ease of use for your visitors?

- Does the content effectively represent and communicate your brand?

- Does your site comply with ADA best practices?

- Is your site optimized for mobile viewing?

- Have you used compelling messaging on your website? Am I inspired to take an action after glancing through the content on your site’s landing page?

Do you know what’s really great about all of this? It’s all within your control! How you structure and set up your site’s content is determined by you and your website’s designer so that you can ensure that the messages that you’re sending through your website are efficient and effective. Your site’s content isn’t some sort of deep, dark mystery with your site’s success left up to chance. There are very real, solid steps that can be taken to ensure that your website is maximizing its potential; and what we want most is for your website to really work for you.  

The reality is that you can have the sleekest website in the world, but if your message is unclear or confusing – or if it’s even slightly difficult to understand, at a glance, what you do or what you offer, then your website isn’t working for you and it’s time for a change.

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