This article stemmed from a conversation I overheard recently. The person in front of me was on their phone clearly speaking to their web designer.
I wasn’t really listening very intently until I heard something along the lines of:
“Just put up the text I emailed over this morning. I didn’t have much time to write it but it’s probably good enough. I just want the site to go live”.
1) Writing good copy is harder than you think
While I understand the urgency, here are my five reasons why this approach is just plain wrong:
Part of the problem with writing text is that pretty much anyone can do it. However, not many people have the knowledge and experience to write it properly. What am I talking about?
A good copywriter will know about SEO, psychology, user experience, calls to action, how much or little to write to get the point across and ultimately, be able to drive online sales and enquiries through the words they choose.
Not many business owners have all these necessary copywriting skills.
2) Content last puts visitors last
As I discussed in my last blog post on content, putting off the copywriting until the end of a project can create all sorts of problems.
To sum it up, making the content an afterthought leads to a poor user experience. Shoehorning some text into an already approved website design inevitably results in content that’s just okay at best. This is because no real thought has been put into looking at the design and content as a whole and prioritising what’s most important to the end-user.
3) Poor content = poor conversions
Slapdash content that’s been written to ‘fill the gaps’ in the design will more often than not perform poorly. Like anything else in life, the more research and preparation you do, the better results you’ll achieve.
I’ve seen hundreds of websites over the years that have had very poor content and no calls to action amongst other obvious problems. Some of these websites cost in excess of £10,000 to design and build - only to perform poorly in terms of conversions because no thought gone into writing the content to engage with the target audience.
4) The content will probably never be rewritten
There’s nothing wrong with wanting to get your new website live so you can start getting sales and enquiries. The problem lies when this process is rushed. And because the content is often the last thing to be thought about, the text is commonly put together quickly with the thought “we can improve it later on”. In this scenario, the day-to-day running of the business usually takes over and the original content is left performing badly on the site for years until someone decides they’d like a complete redesign.
5) Shooting yourself in the foot
Remember how excited you were when you had the idea for your own business and imagined how successful it might be one day? It’s important to keep these thoughts at the forefront of your mind when it comes to the content on your website.
Of course the design of the site is very important too, but too many business owners prioritise that over the content.