The copy on your website will make or break your web site. This is where copywriting comes in. The more you learn it, the better your success will be.
In this section of the website we’ll look at certain aspects of the site you should put special attention to, how to write compelling copy and some templates to help you get you on your way immediately.
This section, like the rest of the sections on this site, is an ever growing one and isn’t restricted to this page alone. As I write new articles, I’ll link to them from this page, so come back often and subscribe to the newsletter for announcements and exclusive content.
Here are two assumptions you should keep in your mind while writing your articles, sales letters, email or any other copy:
- People Don’t Read Anything At First
- People Don’t Do Anything At First
People Don’t Read Anything At First
This is a universal truth that copywriters came to by countless testing, tracking and other methods. I also personally confirmed this to myself when I installed a tracking script on a few of my pages that showed me the behavior of each visitor.
I could see what they did on the page (I could see the mouse cursor moving, what they clicked on and what got their attention).
I was shocked to see what about 97% of the visitors did when they came to the website: They scrolled all the way down to the bottom, stopping very briefly at some images that had captions underneath and at the sub-headlines. At the bottom they read my P.S., P.P.S and P.P.P.S (which I usually write) and only then they scrolled back up and begun reading the article (or sales letter).
This confirmed for me that new visitors in 97% of cases don’t read your copy at first. You have to get their attention and stimulate them to do it.
People Don’t Do Anything At First
What I also confirmed was true was that if you don’t almost literally grab your readers by their hand and show them how to and when to take action, they simply won’t. And it doesn’t matter how good your product is. They won’t do it. You have to show them and convince them to do it.
Now, the above assumptions apply especially if the visitors don’t know you. But even if they do, it’s your job to:
- Grab Their Attention
- Hold It
- Instil Desire
- Guide Them Towards The Desired Action
- Command Them To Take It
The Two Most Popular CopyWriting Formulas
There are two copywriting formulas that will help you achieve your goals with your website.
The first one is a well known marketing formula popularized by the late Gary Halbert, a legendary copywriter that stands behind so many successful off-line and online product launches that it’s impossible to list them all.
It’s the so called A.I.D.A. formula, which stands for:
Grabbing attention is the job of your headline (more about it below). Specific, targeted image or video can also help.
Interest is the job of your first paragraph, sub-headlines throughout your text and, counter intuitively, also your P.S. (post script).
The second formula was devised by another legendary multi-million dollar copywriter Michael Fortin, a fanatical tester and an all around great person is the so called Q.U.E.S.T. formula, which stands for:
Here you guide your readers by first qualifying them (you can use this little trick in your headline: “Gardeners! Discover How To Grow Your Plants To Twice The Size Without Any Pesticides, Herbicides Or Hormones”). Here we qualified the reader by putting “Gardeners!” in the headline. This will not only grab their attention but also let them know this was written for them.
The next step is to show you understand your readers. This way you build rapport and trust.
Then you educate them by presenting something they don’t know yet (something you discovered or some new research)
What follows is that you stimulate them for your desired action. You give them the benefits of taking action, you can all out their possible objections and explain why either they aren’t true or important. Sometimes you can also just call them out, show your understanding of their way of thinking and ask them to take action anyway.
Transition is a call to action. Don’t forget this important part. So many sites have decent copy right up to the point where it’s time to take action. They just plant a small PayPal “Buy Now” button and that’s it. You have to guide your potential customers right till the end. Make sure you give almost a command to buy now or to take some other action. Remind them of the benefits and what they’ll lose if they don’t take action now.
How To Grab Your Visitor’s Attention
The first thing your visitors see on your web site are the page outline and the headline. Your job is to make the headline stand out as much as possible. Make your Internet marketing page design as clean as possible with none to very little distractions.
Add relevant images with captions on your page. Images have an effect of grabbing attention and stop the reader in his tracks. With all the newspapers and magazines, we became conditioned that a caption below the image will explain it in more detail, so we almost automatically at least skim through the text if not actually read it.
Add video to your page. People usually don’t want to bother to read your site at first, so watching a short and to the point video will help stimulate them to read it after all.
Your sub-headlines should tell a story because your readers will at first only scroll down the page and they will usually at least skim through the sub-headlines.
Add at least a P.S. if not also a P.P.S and a P.P.P.S. to the bottom of the page. There you can briefly summarize the gist of your content and tell the reader why he or she should read it.
How To Hold Your Visitor’s Attention
Now that you have attention, you have to hold it. This is the job of your first paragraph. It has to instil curiosity in a reader and make them read the second paragraph. The second paragraph has to get them to read the third and so on.
Always leave something untold in the previous paragraph that it touches on but promises the next paragraph will answer it.
There are very specific techniques to get readers to keep reading and they work very well if you learn how to use them correctly.
How To Instil Desire
There are many ways to make your visitors want your product.
First you have to present a problem, which either the readers know they have or you bring it to their attention. Sometimes you can blow it slightly out of proportion.
Second, you show your understanding because you have already been where your reader is now.
Third, present a simple yet effective solution and back it up with proof (the more, the better). You can state the benefits, you can give an outrageous promise, but you have to back it up with proof. You can demonstrate your techniques in action on video (works best).
Another brilliant strategy that works very well if you’re selling a service is to give detailed instructions on how to do what your service does. Make sure to point out all the pitfalls and all the details one has to take care of. Tell them the intricate nuances one has to be aware of to pull it off perfectly. Tell them it takes a lot of time but it’s worth it. Rest assured that a vast majority of people won’t want to do it by themselves. If you have a reasonable price, they will want you to do it for them.
How To Make Your Visitors To Take Action
Just ask. But make sure you do!
Simply guide the visitor, assure them it will take only a minute or less and state the benefits they will enjoy when they do the action.
This simple final step is often overlooked by Internet marketers and it costs them a lot of subscribers and sales.