Web users are lazy and impatient – think of yourself when you’re waiting for a site to download that takes a few seconds longer than you expect! That means that web copy needs to get the message across FAST.

The very first thing that your web visitor will look at is the headline – it needs to reassure the website visitor that the site will deliver the information they were looking for. If it doesn’t (or it’s hard to find) they’re gone!

Then there’s the web copy that you want to get your reader engaged – and this where the ‘line’ appears. Do you write creative copy that gets the reader involved and ‘draws the picture’ of what it could be like for them to own your product or experience your services? Or do you write focused, sharp copy that tells them the facts and gets to the point quickly and clearly?

What a dilemma – what sort of web copy works best? There’s a case for both – and there’s some other issues that need to be taken into account; people read headlines, but don’t read all the copy – they scan it. That means you have to be very clever with your web copy.

The formula I use is to:

  • Talk about the problems that people are experiencing (relating to the service/product – or to be more accurate, the absence of it).
  • Reassure them that there is a solution.
  • Outline what the product or service does (the features) – and extend that into what it will be like to have that in place (the benefits).
  • Provide a call to action and a link to the page you want them to go to next, or the number or email you want them to contact you on right in the web copy (don’t expect them to search for information, remember the first line of this blog).
  • Taking into account that they’ll be scanning through this, draw their attention to key words. This may not be the ones they’ve searched on necessarily, but the ones that are emotionally charged, for instance in an ad for garden design:

    You can add a room to your home by turning your garden into an area you use more and get more pleasure with less effort.


    When the sun shines do you look at your garden and wish you could sit out and enjoy it instead of slaving over a mountain of weeds? A good design can take the work away and create a garden you can enjoy.

    If you’re scanning down the web copy – the bold words stand out and your core message is clear. You can make your web copy walk the line if you’re smart – just don’t overdo it.

    It doesn’t only work on web copy; it works on your paper documents too!
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