Print Friendly, PDF & Email

Think your website is a good enough marketing tool for your business? Let me ask you a question: how large is your traffic volume and what is the conversion ratio once you get them there?

Many small business owners put up a website because it’s a necessary marketing tool without really thinking about its overall impact. So no matter how hard they work at their businesses, they have little traction from the online world because it simply isn’t built in the right manner to attract the clients it should.

Take a look at your current website. Are you making these mistakes?

5 Copywriting Mistakes Most Small Business Websites Make

Mistake #1 Writing For The Company

Most small business owners don’t know what to say. They have a hundred things on their plate waiting for their attention, and writing usually isn’t something they enjoy. So it falls to the bottom of the pile, relying on their web designers to copy/paste a little content into their site, or writing a sentence or two themselves to fill in the blanks.

Even when you spend a little extra time to write copy, it usually comes without much substance: a few bullet items, a paragraph or two that sums up everything you know about your industry, without any thought for what your potential customers are really looking for.

Content should be rich and vibrant. When you communicate with your prospects through one on one conversation, they gain the interaction that takes place. That same concept should be built into all you say in the online world.

Mistake #2 Assuming They Know What You Mean

What makes you different? What makes you unique? How clear do you make that on your site?

Depending on your industry, you may have years of experience, years of education, and many more years researching your passion and falling for what you do. Your clients have an instant problem they are trying to deal with, and they want information fast and they want it now. They won’t read between the lines and try and figure out what you’re trying to say.

You can’t speak in technical terms, or write things in a clinical way. They want to read it, get their a-ha moment, trust you, and then continue the relationship from there. If they don’t get that in the first few seconds, they will move on to someone that can.

Mistake #3 Poor Communication

People skim, scan and float through content, deciding on its importance in a matter of seconds. If they can’t find anything of interest, or your internal message is hidden in code, they will move on finding something more relevant somewhere else.

If you visited two sites with several lead titles like these, which would you want to spend more time with?

1. A Testimonial
2. Happy Friday
3. My Services

Or:

1. Why Your Pain Isn’t All In Your Head
2. A Natural Way To Treat Your Pain
3. 3 Things Your Doctor Isn’t Telling You About Pain

People have problems and are looking for solutions. You can’t expect them to find information by searching through what you have to say (or in some cases, assuming what you have to say because it isn’t printed in black and white). It you don’t spell it out, they will never find the information.

Mistake #4 Thinking Your Site Only

If you are using a blog platform like WordPress (if you aren’t, why not?) its not only the content that matters. It’s also how you lead people from one place to another.

It used to be your site existed for the sole purpose of directing a person that found it to take action. Not any more. People are online, surfing around to various sites and material all day long. They find something great on LinkedIn, click over and read it, comment on it through Facebook, and tweet it to their own followers on Twitter. They like something you’ve written and choose to download your free report. They talk with a client, who needs some advice, and they share your content through an email.

You no longer have a website, you have an online web presence. Everything you do feeds in to the way you market it. And if you’ve never followed the trail to see how your potential customers and clients move, you’re missing out on one of the biggest business builders ever.

Mistake #5 Weak or No Call To Action

What should your visitor do when they find you?

If you have content that people find valuable enough to read and share, your next step is making them want even more. Over 99 percent of your readers won’t make a purchase on the spot. But getting them to take one more step is easy if you have the right system in place.

Typical call to actions usually fall into one of four categories:

  • Learn more
  • Enroll, subscribe, join
  • Get a quote, get more information
  • Buy now

Learn more can be valuable with a wealth of content, leading people from one blog post to another familiarizing them with your content. Learn more action steps usually require only a click, your reader doesn’t have to release information to get more.

Enroll, subscribe or join buttons lead to more content, and are often free, yet require something from your reader. The most basic would be an email address, which allows you to communicate on a richer level.

Get a quote allows you to receive more information in a contact form manner. You can have as many or as few fill in the blank boxes as you desire. The more information you get up front, the more you’ll be prepared for the sales connection you make with your potential customers.

A buy now button is the hardest to achieve in a small amount of time, but once a person is ready, the button should be obvious with little blocking it from being used.

Remember, you call to actions shouldn’t be vague, hidden or an afterthought. Instead, they should be prominent on your website, ready when your reader is ready.