Tag Archives: web copy writer

The Secrets to Web Content that Sells

13 Jun

The best web developers understand that a critical part of every website design is the actual web content on every page. This content is what drives viewers to the website, and it is what keeps viewers interested in what the website has to offer. Additionally, web content compels website viewers to take action and either buy something or want to learn more. In order to write excellent web content, it is important to understand the basic fundamentals of writing search engine optimized copy. Here are some guidelines for writing web content that sells.

Web Content Research

Expert web content writers understand that before one word is every written for a website, research must be done first. This research consists of learning more about the niche industry or hobby that the website is about. This means reading up on the industry, as well as finding out what the top competitors are including on their websites. Any business that wants to get ahead in a smart way will take the time to research competitors first. Do this right and you have a great start to creating web content that sells!

Web Content Keywords

When consumers are looking for something on the Internet, they will generally type in a series of keywords into a search engine. These keywords are what lead viewers to particular websites. The websites which have enough of these keywords included in the web content get the best results in the search engines. This is often referred to as search engine optimization, or SEO. When writing content, be sure to use keyword research tools to indentify the top five keyword combinations for the best results for your website.

Web Content Word Counts

Another way to web content success is to make sure that you follow the rules when it comes to the actual word count of your web copy. Many people do not understand that if you do not have at least 250 words on a web page, it will simply be ignored by most major search engines like Google, Yahoo, and Bing. Be sure to write at least 250 words for each page. In addition, do not get carried away with your keywords, which will only cause your pages to be dropped entirely!

Web Content Paragraph Structure

Most readers will spend approximately 30 seconds or less reading your web content, so keep your sentences easy to read to keep them interested. Limit each paragraph to no more than 3-4 sentences and make sure that they make overall sense. Each paragraph should start with a compelling sentence and end with another compelling sentence to lead readers to the next paragraph. Remember, you are not writing a novel here, just great web content!

Call to Action in Web Content

Lastly, if you want to write the very best web content, you must include a call to action for your readers. Near the middle to the end of the web content, be sure to ask the reader to take action such as exploring other parts of the website (through imbedded links), pick up the phone to call, make a purchase, or send an email through a web contact form. The goal of the website is to not have people get stuck reading through many pages of content, but rather to take clear action.

As you write your web content, be sure to take the time to proofread it and spell check it so that your website comes off as intelligent and authoritative to readers. The basics of good writing apply to web content and will help your copy to sell to viewers. By following the above tips, your web content will improve and you will get positive results in terms of selling your ideas, services and products on a website marketing platform.

What I Learned From Blogging Everyday for a Month

29 May

During the month of May, I decided to participate in the 2011 WordCount Blogathon, which required posting once a day to ‘A Journey of Words’. For a busy freelance web copy writer, this was no easy task. First of all, I had to dedicate at least 30 minutes daily to writing a blog post. Secondly, I had to come up with topics that would be of interest to my readers. Lastly, I had to stick with something for an entire month, something I have struggled with in the past. But here I am, at the end of this challenge and I did it!

During this time, here’s what I learned:

1. Blogging can be a great way to connect with readers and meet new contacts. Throughout the month, I had the honor of getting comments from a huge audience of fellow bloggers, writers and business owners around the world. A few even agreed to be guest bloggers, which was such a treat. I have to say that the rewards of blogging are many.

2. Blogging teaches discipline as a freelancer. One of the biggest fears I had going into the Blogathon was that I would not have the time to blog daily. Instead, I found that the time I spent blogging taught me a lot about being committed to something bigger than myself. I became more disciplined and stopped letting things distract me from my purpose as a writer.

3. Blogging daily is a great source of free advertising. Over the entire month, I used Google alerts to track my success as a blogger, specifically to see if my name came up often through web searches. You may have noticed that there were specific keywords highlighted in most posts (but not all). These keywords helped my website to rank higher and I got a lot of Google hits on my name and my blog feeds.

Spending time on your blog daily, or at least a few times a week, can be a great way to build a steady following of people, make new friends and build awareness about your business or passions. I fully intend to use my blog as a tool to reach more people and share information in a big way this year.

Now it’s your turn to share – How do you benefit from blogging?

3 Tips for Coming Up with Ideas as a Writer

28 May

One of the questions that I get a lot from new writers and clients is, “Where do I find ideas to write about?” For many writers, inspiration comes from different sources. These sources depend on what you are exposed to in an average week, who you talk with, and what kind of media streams into your world.

You may be surprised to learn that I personally do NOT watch television, I seldom have time to sit down and read novels, and I don’t go out looking for topics to write about. Instead, I let the world unravel itself to me. I write about things that I personally encounter through different forms of technology and personal networking combined with a passion for researching.

If you are struggling with coming up with topics for your blog, marketing materials or more…here are 3 simple tips to coming up with interesting things to write about.

Use writing prompts. A great way to come up with topics, especially if you are more of a creative writer, is to employ writing prompts. These are short little intros on topics to write about, sort of like what your English teacher used to assign to you to write essays. Some of my favorite writing prompt websites give you fun writing prompts to get you started. Visit Writer’s Digest Writing Prompts and The One-Minute Writer for some fun, daily writing prompts!

Subscribe to favorite blog and news feeds. If you are a sporadic reader (like me) you can often find writing inspiration through what you read. Blogs and online news sources can give you a lot to think about and inspire new writing. If you have a mobile device, you can even read on the go. Just be sure to credit any sources you find and ask bloggers before you quote from their blog posts.

Look for popular trends. As a web copy writer, you will want to ocassionally create articles and blog posts on popular topics to drive traffic stats up. To do this, focus in on the hot topics and keywords that are creating a buzz on the Internet. Try using Google Trends or Yahoo Buzz Index to locate these topics.

 

Now it’s your turn. How do you come up with ideas to write about? Please be sure to share them below!

Happy 2nd Birthday to A Journey of Words!

14 May

Wow, I cannot believe it that my little space on the net “A Journey of Words” is turning 2 years old this weekend! What started out as a casual place to post updates for my web copy writing clients, has now turned into one of my favorite places to share ideas, encouragement and tips for making your business more successful through content marketing.

Over the past 2 years, A Journey of Words has been a source of inspiration for me as a writer and as a small business woman. As I struggled to make my way in the world, a career changer in my mid-30’s, this little blog has been a place where I have turned to over and over again to gather my thoughts in a creative way.

The recent WordCount Blogathon has given me a good reason to take fifteen minutes out of every day to share something new here. As a result, A Journey of Words has gotten some nice comments from others and for that I am very grateful.

People have asked me the following questions about this blog, which I would like to address:

Q. What does A Journey of Words mean?    

A. This phrase describes the personal and professional journey that I have been on as a writer. What started out as a part time effort back in 2006, ended up giving life to a whole new career for me. I went from being a disillusioned HR professional, to an inspired web copy writer that year. I made my dream of being a work from home mom a reality. I improved the quality of my family life, my professional life, and my community by being gutsy enough to take this journey. All that time it was the WORD that led me to where I find myself now, and this will be the way it will be in the future.

Q. Why is your blog build on the Word Press.com platform instead of as part of your website?

I get this one a lot. The straightforward answer is that the program that I used to build my website did not include the option to create a blog, still doesn’t for some odd reason. Other than that, I love everything else about my website. So, that left me with one option – to create a blog elsewhere. I actually first started out with a Blogger blog, but after getting fed up with some of the themes I was using, I was turned on to Word Press. Since then, I have enjoyed switching out the look and feel of A Journey of Words several times, but will always use WP as my blog format. So, to make it work with my website I simply set up a re-direct page from my website to here.

Q. Why don’t you monetize your blog with pay to click ads and affiliate buttons?

While I respect and appreciate that many bloggers include paid advertising sources on their blogs, it was a personal decision not to do so with A Journey of Words. First off, this isn’t a place to advertise for anything really. This is a place to leave the world’s clutter behind and focus on the words in front of you. I wanted this blog to be uncomplicated, easy to navigate and understand for all viewers. Besides, I’m not trying to get rich from my endeavors – just love what I do and the small business owners I help!

So there you have it. Let me personally thank  all of you wonderful friends and family who take the time to read my blog throughout your busy lives. I welcome your comments, ideas and feedback always. Thanks for making the last 2 years so much fun!

10 Tips for Working with a Great Web Copy Writer

4 Apr

In this global economy, the smartest investment a small business owner will ever make is a professional website. Not only can a website become a central point from which to market products and services, but it can be an excellent way to convey a message to the rest of the world. A well designed website can also be an effective resource that will provide value and dimension to your company. In other words, what your website tells others about you initially will leave a lasting impression on anyone searching for your particular offering(s).

Your new website should be able to do two things and do them well. It should clearly state that “Hey, I’m here to serve your needs!” and “This is what makes me better than other companies!” 

Without these two critical things, a website will fail – no matter how much you pay someone to design it for you or how much time you spend on it. If you are struggling to come up with a clear message, no one can help you better than a professional web copy writer!

So how can you be sure to find the best web copy writer to handle the job correctly the first time? Here are some helpful tips for working with a great web copy writer for your new website:

1. Know your expectations before searching for a web copy writer. Before you start placing ads for a writer, consider what your actual needs will be. Do you have a website that’s ready for content? Is there a specific time frame you have for the web copy to be completed? What are your ideas in terms of budget for the writing project? Make sure you have all these questions answered in advance so you can find a copy writer who can handle your writing project with ease. Failure to provide full disclosure can have disastrous results.

2. Review multiple portfolios of web copy writers in your market. This is a mistake that far too many business owners make when beginning a search for a web copy writer. Think about it. Would you hire someone off the street to fix your expensive foreign car if that person had only worked on American vehicles? No, of course not. You would find someone who had experience in your specific market. Likewise with web copy writers. Look for those who have experience writing in your market, industry or business focus. Their expertise will come across in your web copy, making you sound more authorative.

3. Evaluate the performance of previous web copy projects. As you search through the online portfolio of the web copy writers you are considering for the job, take a look at how well the websites come up in the search engines. You can do this easily by typing in the keywords highlighted on the website or the keywords you would search for to find each particular business. You may also contact the webmaster for each website and ask how well the websites are performing. The goal of your website is to rank well on the first page of the search engine results, so choose writers who consistently provide SEO friendly copy and results you can actually see.

4. Read client testimonials / ask for references. Any good web copy writer worth his or her salt will be able to produce actual client testimonials as to the quality of work. These testimonials are generally found on the web copy writer’s website or social media pages (like LinkedIn). You should also feel free to ask for client references as to the validity of these testimonials if you are unsure of things. Remember, this is your project and you want the very best professional for the job.

5. Have a reasonable budget in mind. The old rule of “you get what you pay for” definitely applies when searching for a great web copy writer. Cheap is never better. In fact, if you want cheap you can hire someone who doesn’t speak your language, doesn’t care about quality and cares nothing about your business or it’s success online. If you want website copy that outperforms your competitors, hire a web copy writer who charges accordingly. Have a realistic budget in mind when hiring a copy writer, which can range on average from $200-600 per website.

6. Look for versatility in a web copy writer. When you are hiring a web copy writer to complete the most important aspects of your online marketing project, consider a writer who is versatile. Afterall, once the website is completed, you will no doubt want to promote it through a wide range of marketing medium. A good web copy writer should also offer other writing services such as press releases, print marketing, social media marketing and more. You will want to keep this person around for future jobs!

7.  Get it in writing. Once you have found the right copy writer for the job, ask about getting a contract. In this day and age, just because you have a nice telephone conversation doesn’t mean you will get what you paid for. A web copy writer who is a true professional will be glad to send a contract for services and get everything in writing before taking on a job or accepting payment. Make sure all terms are clear and your content will be 100% original and owned by you. Failure to do this, and you can risk more than just money.

8. Communicate often with your web copy writer. The key to any working relationship is to communicate on a frequent basis. So too, it is important to talk with your copy writer on a regular basis. Make an ongoing effort to gently ask for updates on the project and be available and responsive when your copy writer has a question or needs more information. Give a phone number where your writer can call you. Set up a weekly telephone meeting to discuss the project and assign someone to be the central point of contact at your company.

9. Provide full company information. Be sure to send your copy writer all the background information on your company that you can. This includes your company location, founding date, leaders, mission statement, goals, target customers and products. Never assume that your web copy writer will know all this information or be able to find it. Remember that it’s always better to give too much information to your writer than not enough.

10. Treat your web copy writer right!  Your web copy writer can be your best source of help and information in terms of marketing and advertising. Many of the better copy writers have worked with prominent clients and web marketing professionals and they have learned a lot along the way. Treat your copy writer well by giving prompt feedback, sending payments in on time and offering to give a testimonial or referals. Your web copy writer will most likely bend over backwards to give you the very best service this time and every time if you follow these tips.

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About the Author: Tess C. Taylor is a web copy writer and owner of Taylor Resources Writing. She has written for well over 5 years now and her client list includes many small businesses and large media firms like Yahoo & US News. You can find out more at www.TRWRITING.com

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