If you’re in the process of creating a website, one of your top priorities is to write attractive and compelling content for your site. If this is the first time (or second or third – it takes a while to learn the skill of quality content writing!) you might be a bit unsure of what you should and should not be writing. Successful website content appeals to both your internet viewers and search engines, but catering to both can be intimidating.
Don’t panic! We’ve compiled the top 20 do’s and don’ts to show you how to write website content that enhances the appearance, readability, and SEO effectiveness of your new site. Follow these tips when you’re composing and compiling your website content and you’ll be able to reap the rewards of quality content writing when your new site is live!
1. Please, please, please, DON’T plagiarize.
Copying content from other sites, no matter how tempting, will result in your site getting penalized, or even removed, from search engines. Maintain your copy/pasting self-control and just spend a few extra minutes coming up with your own original content. After all, your company is original, right? It deserves original content.
Top Duplicate Content Checkers
2. Don’t use run-on sentences.
Short and sweet appeals to both humans and search engines and you’ll be rewarded. If you have a lot to say, make sure to break it up into easily scannable chunks.
3. Don’t write content that is too complicated.
It might make you feel smarter to use 4 syllable words 18 times in a paragraph, but most people won’t appreciate your language prowess. Keep the text understandable to the average person.
4. Don’t write long walls of text.
If possible, try to keep paragraph length to 80 words or 4-5 lines. Bullet points, lists and visuals can help break up the text and make it more skim-friendly.
5. Don’t repeat yourself ad nauseam.
Your site visitors are coming to learn about the subject your website covers, and they don’t want to have the same concepts or keywords bombarding them when they want to learn something new.
6. Don’t oversell your product or service.
Quality content writing involves a careful balance of promotional and non-promotional content. Sure, the website’s purpose is to promote what you’re offering, but that doesn’t mean you should bombard readers with invitations to buy or sign up. Provide them with valuable, informative content that they can appreciate before asking them if they’re interested in becoming a consumer.
7. Don’t forget your target audience.
You might know a lot about the topics your website content covers, but you need to keep in mind that your customers might be far less informed. Make sure to write content that meets your site visitors at their level.
8. Don’t use images that you don’t have a legal right to use.
Finding random images on the internet and sticking them up on your site without permission or purchase can result in you getting sued. So unless getting hit with a lawsuit sounds fun to you, don’t use images that aren’t yours.
9. Don’t use bad anchor text.
If you want your website viewers to click on a link in your content, don’t just insert a link with the text “Click here!”. Be creative and use anchor text that is descriptive and inviting.
10. DON’T PLAGIARIZE!
Write your own content and avoid seeing your website tank because you couldn’t take the time to be original. Use a duplicate content checker tool to make sure your content is original.
11. Know what the goal is for each page.
Do you want a customer to purchase a product on a specific web page? Then make sure the content on that page is written to helpfully point them in the right direction and convince them the product is worth buying.
12. Use Calls-To-Action (CTAs).
A CTA is an inviting button, link, image, or some other sort of graphic that encourages a site visitor to become a participant or customer. If you write great content but don’t have a call-to-action, your content will be far less effective at converting visitors to consumers.
13. Use an outline.
Or at the very least have a strong, organized idea as to what you’ll be writing for each web page.
14. Sound like a human!
No one likes content that sounds like it was copied from a dictionary or narrated by a robot. Be down-to-earth and friendly, as much as your style allows. Your site visitors will appreciate the personal connection with you and be more likely to engage with your calls-to-action.
15. Use bullet points, numbered lists, headers, etc.
These will help break up the text and make it look more interesting and readable.
16. Provide the answers your target market needs.
How can your services or products help a consumer? Why are they the best on the market? How can a visitor find exactly the item or information they’re looking for? You’re the expert so your website visitors expect to find some answers!
17. Make sure your paragraphs are organized.
There should only be one idea per paragraph. Each paragraph should start off with the subject, and then stick to that subject without rambling or providing unnecessary information.
18. Make sure the content on your web pages can be scanned quickly.
While still getting the message across. Display important information first and prominently. Most site visitors only take a few seconds before leaving a page, so you want to make sure they see what they’re looking for without feeling like they have to read everything.
19. Once you’ve written a page of content, review it.
Look for any errors or missing information you want to correct. Better still, read the page content out loud, a practice that will help you assess if the text sounds the way you wish and if there are any mistakes that your brain keeps missing.
20. Meet the content deadlines!
In order for content and web design to blend cohesively, it’s always good to make sure your web design team knows what type of content you’re providing. Providing your content punctually means your website will look better and be launched in a timely manner.
Bonus! If you feel like you’re still not quite sure how to write website content or find yourself running out of inspiration, do some googling! Find websites with content you admire and use it as inspiration. Just please, please make sure you stay away from plagiarism!
Even More Content Writing Resources
Not sure you’re cut out for content writing?
We believe in you! But if you’re worried you won’t have the time or inclination to learn and apply these tips for quality content writing, no worries!
We provide excellent content writing services at Thrive and we’ll make sure your site receives content that is organized, optimized, and expresses the message you want to share. Just contact us and we’ll get started on creating great content for your site!
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