I believe that your site’s content is the most important element of all. (Graphic designers and web techies will no doubt disagree with me – but hear me out.)
Your content can make the difference between a potential customer spending 6 seconds and 6 minutes on your website – and taking the action you want them to take.
As soon as someone lands on your website – whether it be on the home page, another page or on a blog post - you need to provide them with the information they came looking for. You need to communicate that you understand their issues, that you have credibility and that you are trustworthy.
Poorly Written Content Will Send People Away -Quickly
For example –
if someone searches on How to Increase My Tax Return – and gets pages of results for this key phrase – what do they want to see?
How to Improve Your Content Right Now
Here are five quick ways you can improve your existing web content right now.
1. Use Lots of Headings and sub-headings
Numerous studies by publishers (offline and online) over the years have proven that you only have 6 seconds to capture their attention and that nearly everyone reads like this:
- They look at the image
- They read the caption under the image (if there is one)
- They read the main headline
If you’ve arrested their attention with your image and headline – they will stay and read sub-headlines. If these are appealing, they’ll go back and read the text. If not – they’ll move to a different page or leave.
2. Try Using Numbers in Your Headings
Ever wondered why you’re always reading ‘7 Great Tips…’ or offered ‘5 Guarantees’ or promised a ’30-day free trial’? Well, studies confirm that numbers increase engagement.
Take a look at the results of this study.
Image source: Nathan Safran
A heading that included a number was 15% more popular than a reader-addressing heading, and 21% more popular than a normal heading.
Don’t ignore these results. Use numbers as blog post headings, or update your services pages to include numbers, e.g.
7 Tips for Saving Money When Travelling
5 Signs your Home needs Rewiring
3. Break Up Large Bodies of Text
Reading online is not only about words; it’s visual.
Huge blocks of text are daunting – and boring. Instead, separate long paragraphs into shorter ones. Aim for no more than around 1 to 4 sentences per paragraph.
Here are a few other things you can do to break up large blocks of text:
- Use bullet points when appropriate.
- Use numbered lists.
- Use images.
- Use specific subheadings to guide the reader through key ideas.
4. Delete Unnecessary Words
Website visitors usually scan online content, rather than read it word for word. Unnecessary words slow down the reader’s experience, and this could cause them to leave. Let’s take a look at an example:
We offer a thorough electrical wiring inspection that can make sure all of your house’s electrical wiring is up to strict safety standards.
While this sentence isn’t difficult to understand, it’s packed with unnecessary words and phrases. Here’s a revised version:
Our comprehensive wiring inspection will ensure your electrical wiring meets safety standards.
Do you see the difference? The revised version is short, clear, and to the point. Transform your content by sifting through your web pages and deleting unnecessary words.
5. Cut Out Jargon
Jargon may scare potential customers away. If they don’t understand what you talking about, how will they know they need your services?
Making the effort to explain complex terms demonstrates your industry knowledge, and shows your customers you care.
How to See What People Like and Don’t Like On Your Site
Log into your Google Analytics and see which pages and posts your visitors are looking at and how long they spend there. Here’s an example from one of my sites – (sorry I haven’t shared the page/post names - can’t give everything away!). I’ve sorted the results by the “Avg. Time on Site” column to show the most popular pages/posts.
This tells me a few interesting things:
- The longest time is spent on a “client only” page where I have some training videos. So let’s ignore that one for now
- The second longest time (14 minutes) is a page that people find very interesting – and it has been well-optimised for keywords because it is where a lot of people (2.47%) enter my site. It also shows me that once they’ve read the info they leave – (93.7% bounce rate) – so I need to edit the info on this page to entice them to visit other pages/posts on my site and not leave.
- When I scroll right down and look at the pages/posts with the least amount of time – it shows me that I need to make the content more interesting – maybe add more images, use better headings, link to other pages etc.
Of course "average time on page" is only one factor out of a whole range of stats that give you great insight into how people are entering, moving around and exiting your site. But it is a good indication of which pages they find interesting, and which ones they don’t.
So why not take a look at your existing web content and blog posts and see if they pass the “interest” factor? If you find that people spend very little time on some of your pages or posts compared to others, then try making them more interesting, following our 4 steps above.
If you don’t have the time or you’re not confident in your writing skills, we can help. We provide affordable web Content Copywriting Services and a Content Creation and Distribution Service (regular blog posts and social media updates) for many of our clients. Why not give us a call at 1300 554 495 or shoot us an email to find out more?