Think about when you go into an important meeting. You wear your best suit or outfit, your outward exterior is perfect because first impressions are everything, right? The same is true of your website. The first impression a new customer gets from your website determines whether they stay and look around or click off to find something better.
First impressions then are the most important thing to worry about, and what a new company should worry about spending all their money on, right? Wrong! Go back to our fictional meeting, and imagine that after you've made your fabulous first impression, you sit down, and open your mouth to deliver your big pitch, and absolute nonsense comes out. In effect, this is what's happening if your web copy isn't spot on! You can have the best looking website in the world, but if you're copy is garbage, then you're just a pretty face.
This includes headlines, call to actions and product descriptions. In today's marketplace you've got about 3 seconds to explain who you are, what you do and exactly what it is that you're selling to any prospective customer. If you can't do that effectively, then you will lose that customer before they've had a chance to look through your site.
So what can you do to ensure that customers get it? Yes, having amazing images is a good start, but only if they relate to your product or service. Having beautiful people on the site is great, but only if it is obvious that they are connected to the product. Your copy has to be spot on, but you can't use to much or you're turn your reader off - no one has the attention span to read large chunks of text on a website anymore, especially because they are most likely scanning your site on their phone. So if you're having to use a lot of text to explain what the beautiful people on your site are doing, then it's a waste of space! Make the pictures, logos and graphics on your site incredible, don't settle for anything less, but make them relatable to your business too.
Once you've done that, the small amount of text you will need to use should be direct, engaging and to the point. Don't waffle, don't use 3 words when one will do and most importantly speak directly to the reader. Engaging them is your number one priority, so make sure everything written on your site relates back to ensuring that they get it. If you're finding yourself using large text to explain what you do, go back and start again.
Your web copy says just as much about you as your branding and layout, yet not many companies spend enough time ensuring that its at the same high level. The result is their overall output suffers. Don't just be a pretty face; put some thought behind your copy!