It is not a secret that content marketing is becoming a strategy that must be included into your web marketing arsenal. Writing for the web is very different from all other mediums. We keep a close eye on the trends, techniques and methods of writing for the web. Here is our inside scoop on how to make your web content really stand out.
- People scan: People don’t really read the web. They scan it. They look at:
- Headwords that begin a paragraph
So make sure that you have your strongest stuff in these positions. This is also why bulleted lists are successful on the web and why…
- Shift paragraphs: You should shift paragraphs fairly frequently. This places key headwords at the places people look.
- Focus on headwords: Good headwords are often selling points or engaging questions. Sometimes, I’ll just call it “the what”. Sometimes this feels unnatural, like you’re giving it all away in the first sentence, so why read the rest? Essentially, it is, but that’s how people read the internet, so give them what they’re looking for where they’re looking for it.
- Use outbound links: Wherever you can throw in a link to back up what you’re saying, do it. This adds credibility.
- Use internal links: Wherever there’s an opportunity to link to some other piece of information in the website, do it. It just goes to helping a reader find what they’re looking for and sometimes can be useful in metrics, so you can see what pages people are viewing in what order.
- Call to action: Calls to action should be sprinkled throughout. Always ask: “What do I want them do after they read this?” For you guys, a “contact us” is probably appropriate at the end of almost every page. Think of it this way: If they’ve gotten to the end of the page, they’re interested, so give them a little push.
- Recycle: Remember that every visitor is not reading the whole site or even the whole section. This means you can re-use material.
- Be personable: “Conversational” in web means “anticipate the next question.” It also means that a certain level of informality tends to be more successful, but really it’s about focus. Be sure to anticipate the reader’s next question and give them that answer.
- Be friendly: Informality and voice. You want your reader to feel like they’re having a conversation with their next door neighbor. Throw in a joke from time to time, make them feel like they’re getting the inside scoop. This will take you further away from the sales pitch and closer to “this is someone I can talk to.”