An important part of using an online presence to reach more people, grow an email list, sell more products, and secure more customers is knowing how to write content for a website.
In this guide, we’ll look at how to use landing page copywriting as well as keyword research, SEO optimization, and non-copy page elements to create more effective, powerful, and results-oriented pages for your website.
Define the Purpose of the Page
Website content comes in a variety of shapes and sizes. From long-form content and blog posts to sidebar blurbs and product descriptions, copy is prepared and displayed in varied ways to serve different purposes.
But in this post, we’re focusing on how to write content for a website landing page.
In the simplest terms, Unbounce describes a landing page as “any web page that a visitor can arrive at or ‘land’ on.”
Landing page content is different from blog post content. Blog posts are time-stamped pages usually related to something topical, timely, seasonal, or newsworthy, whereas landing pages are typically evergreen pages (with no timestamp and often no navigation). They usually include information about a brand’s products, services, or offerings.
Landing pages also have a specific purpose. Unbounce goes on to say they are pages that have “been designed for a single focused objective.” Landing pages are designed to lead the user to take action. They are created for one of the following purposes:
- Click Throughs: a page designed to lead the user to another webpage.
- Lead Generation: a page designed to lead the user to enter their information in an opt-in form.
- Purchase: a page designed to lead the user to make a purchase.
Before you create a page on your website, decide what purpose the page will serve. Click & Tweet! While there may be other intended actions, most landing pages have the purpose of driving one of the actions listed above.
Find the Best Keyword for the Page
Before you can learn how to write a landing page, you first need to learn how to find the best keywords for your pages.
A keyword is the primary term you want search engines to associate with your page. To identify the best keyword for your page, use Alexa’s Keyword Difficulty Tool.
- Enter a phrase or term that is related to the topic of your page.
- Use the filter to limit search results to terms that are low-competition keywords, closely related to your phrase or term, popular among users, and not a term that is already driving traffic to your site.
- View the report and choose one keyword that is within your competitive reach (indicated by the bolt icon on the report) and widely used by searchers (has a high popularity score). Assign this term to your page as the primary keyword.
Once you go through keyword discovery and select your primary keyword, you can continue to learn how to write content for a website.
Write the Page Copy
As you create content for your landing page, always keep these content writing tips for beginners in mind as you write copy blurbs and paragraphs.
- Know your goal before you begin. Earlier in this post, we talked about defining the purpose of your page. Keep that purpose in mind as you write. Create all of your content with the intention of driving your audience toward taking the desired action.
- Focus on benefits over features. As you highlight products, services, incentives, or offers, show the reader what’s in it for them. Instead of listing features, explain how each feature benefits the reader. For example, don’t talk about a bike’s gear system; talk about the bike’s ability to provide a smooth ride.
- Explain the transformation. Give the reader an idea of how the product, service, incentive, or offer will change their situation. Explain what life is like before and after they take action, and tell the reader how their life will improve once they take the next step.
- Be concise and clear. Use short sentences and phrases. Avoid complex language that loses readers, and cut out any information that is unnecessary or flowery. Stick to saying just what the reader needs to know.
- Avoid buzzwords and jargon. Don’t confuse or lose readers by using high-level terminology they don’t understand. Write using the same language your audience uses when they speak.
- Use bullets and formatting. Help readers find the most important points in your copy by breaking up the text. Highlight main points using bullets, bolding, italics, and variations in font styles and sizes. Most readers scan, so be sure the key points stand out.
- Speak directly to the reader. Copy is more effective when directed right at your audience. Use the same language you would use to speak to your reader in person. Use words like “you” and “your,” and when appropriate, incorporate words like “us” and “we.”
- Stray from grammar rules – if it sounds natural. While you don’t want your copy to include glaring grammar errors, it’s OK to stray from strict academic writing rules. If it sounds more natural to end a sentence with a preposition or use an incomplete sentence, break the rules. But only break the rules if it adds clarity and a natural sound to the copy. Don’t push the boundaries so much that your copy looks unpolished and sloppy.
End With a Strong Call-to-Action
As you learn how to write content for a website, always keep in mind that landing pages are designed to trigger a user-action. To help initiate that activity, use a clear call-to-action at the end of every page. Use these tips to tell the reader exactly what you want them to do and why they should take action.Landing pages are designed to trigger user-action. Use a clear CTA at the end of every page. Click To Tweet
- Include proof. Show readers why they can trust you. Back up your statements by including testimonials, stats, data, and social media mentions that provide proof and support.
- Imply urgency. Motivate your audience to take action by giving them reasons for why they can’t wait. Explain what they may lose if they don’t act now. Add deadlines and limited offers that show the reader what they will miss by failing to take the next step right away.
- Overcome objections. Put yourself in the shoes of your audience and imagine what objections are holding them back from taking action. Address those concerns and provide options like free trials and money-back guarantees to make it impossible for the audience to resist your offer.
- Use action words. Don’t let your audience be the least bit confused when they reach the end of your page. Include a call-to-action that uses action words (get started, click here, sign up, call, fill out, etc.) that tells them exactly what they need to do to take the next step.
Write a Conversion-Focused Headline
Writing headlines for landing pages is slightly different from writing headlines for blog posts and articles. While both are intended to catch attention, headlines for blog posts are designed to make readers interested in a topic, whereas headlines for a landing page are designed to make readers interested in a product, service, incentive, or offer.
Headlines for landing pages must be:
- Clear: Puns or clever headlines may occasionally work for blog posts or social media, but avoid using them for landing page headlines. Always get right to the point and clearly explain what the page is about.
- Relevant: The headline must be relevant to the content on the page, call-to-action, and link that led the user to the page. Match headlines to the language of the call-to-action, ad, or promotion that brought the audience to the page. Then ensure that the rest of the copy and call-to-action are relevant to the main title of the page.
- Desire-Focused: The purpose of the page is to get the user to take action, so use your headline as an opportunity to introduce how the action connects with the reader’s desires. In the headline, present the main solution, benefit, or result the action will provide.
Add Non-Copy Page Elements
Website content writing guidelines include more than just copy. To create strong, well-converting landing pages, put attention into the non-copy elements on the page as well.
Insert elements that show concepts (instead of just describing them), break up the page, and draw the reader’s eye to important information by using:
- Text call-outs
- White space
- Charts and graphs
- Line breaks
- Variations of background colors and images
Putting effort into optimizing your landing pages will go a long way in increasing the chances your page visitors will convert and feel they’ve found all of the information they need.
As you can see in this screenshot from Luminosity, it’s not just about learning how to write content for a website. It’s also about learning how to use non-copy elements to make the text on the page easier to scan and read while highlighting major points and takeaways.
Write an SEO and User-Friendly Page URL
A well-structured URL provides a better user experience while helping to optimize a page for SEO. Click & Tweet! A clear, concise URL makes links look better and easier to share and recognize. An SEO-friendly URL provides useful information to search engines. So create a custom URL for landing pages that:
- Is short and to the point
- Includes the primary keyword
- Uses language that describes the page (not automated numeric labels)
- Does not include special characters
- Does not include unnecessary adjectives and descriptors
Optimize the Page for SEO
You want users to find your website through search. So as you write content for website pages, use SEO best practices that will help your page rank for your main keyword.
Use the primary keyword naturally throughout the content. Once you write your content, go back through it and make sure you used your keyword throughout the copy. A keyword density of about 1-2% is ideal, as it is enough to tell search engines what the page is about without stuffing the page with too many uses of the same word (which can actually be a search engine penalty).
Use the keyword in the correct places. In addition to using the keyword in the main body copy, also use it in the following SEO content elements:
- Page title (the headline that is visible on the page)
- At least one subheading (the copy that is formatted with H2, H3, H4, etc.)
- Title tag (the 50-60 character page title embedded in the code of the page)
- Meta description (the 150-160 character page summary embedded in the code of the page)
- Image alt tags (the text that describes an image and appears if the image doesn’t load properly)
Link to the landing page from other pages on your website. Help both users and search engines find your landing page by linking to it from other pages on your website. On-site links help lead audiences, and they also send signals to search engines telling them why the page is important (and that it should be ranked for that topic). Also, when it’s natural to do so, link to landing pages using anchor text that include the page’s primary keyword.
Double-check the SEO elements on the page. Even if you optimize your page, it can be easy to miss opportunities or make mistakes. To check on-page SEO and make sure you properly optimize a page, use Alexa’s On-Page SEO Checker. The tool scans your page and provides details on errors and directions on how to resolve mistakes.
- Enter your page’s URL and primary keyword into the On-Page SEO Checker.
- Use the report’s instruction to make changes to your page that will improve your SEO.
With the SEO Audit Tool, you can be certain that all of your pages are fully optimized.
A/B Test the Page
As you learn how to write content for a website, focus on the best practices outlined in this post. But always remember that these guidelines aren’t set in stone.
This is the starting point for your website pages. Once you create the first version of your page, your work isn’t done. You should test different versions of your page to see which creates the most conversions (the percentage of users who complete the desired action on the page).
Create versions of your page with different variations of:
- Button colors
Then A/B test your pages to see which connects more with users and produces the best results for your webpages.
Get More Tips On How to Write Content for a Website
By following the tips in this post, you can create website content that will attract readers and search engines, increase your conversions, and turn each of your landing pages into a lead-gathering, sales-generating machine.
To learn even more about how to write content for a website, check out our recent post on writing blog posts. “Blog SEO Tips: A Checklist for Writing SEO Friendly Posts” digs deep into how to write blog posts that will serve search engines and readers alike.
Ready to start creating compelling, action-oriented, and SEO-friendly landing pages right now?
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