Writing for the Web Basics: Three Keys to Effective Copy

By: Melinda Copp

Writing for the web is one of the most important types of business writing most people have to do-especially if you conduct business online, and these days, who doesn't? Maybe you have a web site that needs updated content, or you need a press release or sales copy to help move your product. Whatever the reason is that you need web content, you should be aware that not all types of content are effective, and in order to reach your goals with your content you need to write content that is designed for success online.

Successful online content and successful print content are different in a couple key ways, and while writing for the web is not as hard as some make it seem, there are a few things you must do to make sure your content is successful.

1. Make it Easy on the Eyes
While web content still serves to inform like other types of content, when you are writing articles for the web you must remember to stay clear and concise. Web readers rarely take the time to read lengthy articles word for word, rather they prefer to skim through smaller blocks of text to find the information they are looking for.

The best way to capture and keep the attention of the average web reader with your online content is to use headings along with short paragraphs or bulleted lists. This way it is easy for them to find the information they are looking for and they will be more likely to stick around on your web site.

2. Use Keywords Effectively
When writing for the web you also must understand the way search engines operate and how keyword-rich content can boost your search engine rankings and attract more visitors to your site. If you fill your web site with content and articles that contain keywords that relate to your web site or business, it will help to improve your search engine rankings and in turn help to drive traffic to your site.

Search engines "read" all of the web pages on all of the web sites on the internet and rank web sites according to a few different factors, one of which is the use of relevant keywords. When writing for the web you should always keep in mind the proper use of keywords to maximize the value of your content.

3. Target Your Audience
The last important aspect that you must consider when writing for the web is your target market. No matter if your goal is to inform, sell, or entertain, your web copy will not effectively reach your goals if it does not appeal to your target market. Before you write your sales copy, articles for your web site, or any other type of web content, you must consider who your target market is and figure out what appeals to them. Once you know the demographic that you are trying to reach you can identify what drives them and what type of writing will keep their interest.

Writing Better Content for Your Site
By keeping these pointers in mind you will be better able to write successfully for the web. Remember to keep your writing short and easy to skim through so web surfers do not lose interest. You should also make sure the web content you write contains relevant keywords and speaks directly to your target audience. Mastering these strategies will help you write web content that gets results!

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