For over 6 years now, I've been writing copy for coaches and creative business owners and I hear the same things said time and time again. From "I just don't know where to start when it comes to writing about my work," to, "I freeze at the mere thought of website writing!" to, "I've rewritten my website so many times and never been brave enough to hit publish!".
So many of my previous clients have found the idea of website copywriting overwhelming and are terrified of getting it wrong. Which is totally understandable, as there's a lot riding on it, right?
When we first start out we have massive hopes and dreams and our website can feel like a ridiculous anti-climax. It's quite shame inducing. There's a lot of "who am I to talk about this like I'm some sort of expert?" and "Why should anyone care about this anyway?!". I know I felt like that when I first left teaching and started editing and proofreading. It's scary. I remember that feeling. I can feel it in the pit of my stomach.
There's a couple of things I know are at the bottom of this:
1. A lack of confidence when it comes to website copywriting
This isn't like anything you've ever had to write before. Nobody taught us this shit in school. And I sure as hell never had to write a sales page when I was teaching 4 year olds their ABCs!
2. The role of copywriting in creating an effective website
Lots of people talk about websites and how they're vital, but no one sits you down when you start a business and tells you what you actually need.
Understanding the Website Copywriting Process
1. You need to know what to include and what to exclude when developing copy
I've written so many websites since I began this word witchery malarkey and it's very clear to me that you need 3 key pages. Home, About, Work with me. Those are the essentials. Everything else is a nice to have.
And when it comes to copy, you need a minimum of 500 words on those pages, so simply popping a bullet-point list isn't going to cut it, but neither do you want to bore your reader...
2. How to structure your website copy
Think of your website as an experience rather than an informative guide. What I mean by that is you're creating a journey for your reader.
So, your Home Page is kind of the shop window of you biz - the store front. This is where you tell people a bit about what you do, why they need it, and where they can go next.
Your About Page is the second most visited page and needs to dive a bit deeper into you and the magic you do. This is where the storytelling happens. It's a page that helps people get to know you better and get a feel for working with you.
Your Work with Me page is where you can direct them from the other two pages. You use this page to describe how they can work with you. What are your offerings? 1-2-1? Group work? Let them know.
3. Tips for capturing tone, style, and voice throughout
When you're writing your website it's important to remember that people buy from people. They want to know what you're like. So write how you speak!
Things that might be helpful:
Write a list of phrases and words you say all the time. Come back to these when you get stuck or worry you don't sound like you.
Keep a folder with all your testimonials in where your clients describe what you're like to work with. How do they talk about you?
Record yourself casually talking about your work and then transcribe what you said. I guarantee it feels more authentic.
Solving the challenges that come with Website Copywriting
Establish a website copywriting routine
Find a time that works for you during the week to sit and write. For me, that tends to be a Monday morning. I love to blitz some writing at the start of the week because then my neurospicy brain gets a big dopamine hit and I can thrive off of that for hours!
Rediscover writing confidence
It's true what they say, practice does help (note I didn't say makes perfect!). The more you write the easier it gets. And the more often you pick up a pen or bash out some words on a keyboard, the more likely you are to find your voice and be able to feel confident writing your website copy.
Make the most of helpful resources - like a copywriting programme
Getting support is one of the best things you can do if you keep getting overwhelmed with your website copywriting. I know from my own experience that having someone to ask for help when I'm struggling gets me out of a spiral of misery. I'm more likely to take messy action when there's someone holding my hand too! Are you? (Psssst! This is why I created Shine. Check it out here.)