As an online copywriter you probably focus a lot of attention on applying your skills as a copywriter, page by page.
Nothing wrong with that. I do the same. I always want each page of copy I write to be the best it can be.
But I also have to consider three other factors that will impact the performance of my copy. In other words, online copywriting is about more than just writing words that sell.
Here are the three other factors I pay attention to. Once I have addressed them all I can finally relax in the knowledge that the page ready to be published.
1. Optimize the page for SEO and SMO.
Yes, every page needs to be optimized for the search engines, including your home pages, product category pages, content pages, subscription pages, product sales pages, and so on. This means identifying a strong key phrase for each page and including it in the title, the meta tags, the headline and the body copy.
I also optimize the page for SMO…that means Social Media Optimization. To do this I’ll make sure that my headline is not just informative, but is also shareable.
For example, the first draft of my headline for this post was:
– Online copywriters also need to be site optimization experts.
It’s a decent, informative headline for a page of content. But it wouldn’t do well in social media.
So I changed it to:
– 3 Ways for online copywriters to optimize every page of copy they write.
By adding a digit to the front of the line, and promising “3 ways”, I have made the line more intriguing, more likely to get clickthroughs from social media sites, and more likely to be shared.
2. Optimize for scannability and readability.
It’s not enough simply to write well. You also have to understand your reader’s likely behavior when coming to the page.
This is becoming more and more important as people turn away from desktop machines and use their mobile devices as their primary way to access the web.
When someone is waiting at a bus stop and taking a quick look at your page, what do they see? Do they see a solid block of text? Or do they see images, a video maybe, subheads and other layout devices that make it easy for the reader to scan the page without necessarily having to wade through it, word by word?
You have to make your page easy on the eye, and easy to “get” and understand, whether your reader is sitting in a comfy chair at home, or just stepping onto that bus.
BTW – including either an image or video on your page will not only make it more attractive, but will also make it do better through social media.
3. Optimize for clickthroughs.
Put simply, if someone comes to your page and then leaves without clicking on anything, you failed.
Maybe that click is on an ad. Or on a link to another page on the site. Or it’s a buy button. Or a subscribe button.
One way or another, your page has a purpose. If that purpose, for example, is to get people to click through to a subscription page, then you have to focus a lot of attention on making that happen.
This will impact how you write the copy itself. It will impact the layout of the page. It will impact the words you use in the link or on the button. It will even impact the background color of the button.
Paying attention to optimization adds value to your services as a freelancer.
A lot of online copywriters simply offer copywriting services.
But you’ll make yourself a lot more attractive to clients, and you’ll be able to charge more, if you present your copywriting skills within a broader promise of page optimization.
After all, it’s optimization that the client really wants.
They want each web page to fulfill its purpose and maximize results.
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