Is your website content killing or converting leads?
Submitted by Catrin Fox on
Content has become something of a buzzword in business circles. Most small business owners are aware they need content for their website, but not everyone knows how to use it appropriately.
Let’s step back a moment.
What is website content?
Content is the substance that makes up your website. It’s a combination of wording, photographs, visuals and infographics, videos, audio files such as podcasts, customer reviews, and more. You may have one or two types of content on your website, or perhaps a huge interactive library.
What does content do?
There’s a huge variety of content across the web, and each has its own distinct purpose. Your choice of content will differ enormously based on your desired result and the people to whom it is directed.
- Blog posts might be conversational and entertaining, designed to gain traction on social media and attract new readers. The desired result is to increase online traffic to your website and draw readers to the top of your sales funnel.
- In contrast, an educational ‘how to’ graphic or video is designed to instruct your existing customers on how to use your product or service. The desired result is to enhance the user experience, add value to your clients and increase product or brand loyalty.
In the end, all content serves the same purpose: to attract online traffic and encourage visitors to use your website, usually to make a sale and/or to enhance the product experience.
Ultimately, different types of content should complement each other and work together to add value to your target audience, thereby fulfilling your end objective.
How to make content that converts
Creating quality, actionable content takes time and practice. Whilst there’s no quick win for creating great content that converts leads into sales, these tips will help set you on the right path:
- Always Keep Your Audience in Mind: Consider why you’re creating that piece of content and for whom it is intended. Consider the needs of your audience and how your product meets them. To find out which types of content resonates well with your intended readers, dig into your website and social media analytics to identify the most-read or most-shared articles, or look for posts that are popular within your industry.
- Solve Problems: How many times have you “Googled it” to find a quick answer? With that in mind, the best way to approach any type of web content -- from blog posts to landing pages to videos -- is to solve a problem. Answer your reader’s questions. To identify burning issues, start by typing a relevant question into a search engine and browse the suggested results, or check Q&A sites like Quora. Your readers don’t read for the sake of reading: they want answers, fast. Give them what they want.
- Sat It Quick, Say It Well: As mentioned above, readers want answers fast. Tempting though it is to write beautiful copy with long flowing sentences, most of the time, it’s a wasted effort. A recent Microsoft study claims that the average attention span of humans today is 8 seconds, which is less than a goldfish. Your content must grab your reader’s attention and hold it with thought-provoking and engaging content. Short stories or anecdotes woven into your content is a great way to hold your readers’ attention; people love stories, particularly human-interest stories or those that demonstrate a point.
- Be Provocative: To engage readers, you first have to attract them to your site. One vital way to do this is to write catchy, provocative headlines. This is often the trickiest part of writing website content, but it’s also one of the most important. Headlines that are slightly provocative or that evoke emotions, such as fear of missing out, often work the best.
This article digs deeper into the topic and offers examples such as: “Provocative content for an accounting firm may include six reasons you’re paying too much in tax; why the top line is more important than the bottom line; and how to get your clients to offer to pay you more than you ask.”
- Be Visual: Remember the goldfish? Your reader’s attention span is minute, but they’re much more likely to stick around on your website if your content is easy to digest. Use attractive photos, graphics and imagery where possible, and break down large pieces of text into manageable chunks.