7 Simple Tips to Simplify your Content
Did you know the average person spends less than 15 seconds on a webpage? As an organisation, this means you only have a quick 10-second gap to grab your audience's attention... which brings me to the fluff.
As a reader, you don't want to fight through a bunch of la-de-da adjectives, just to find out what a business can offer, or how a charity helps. Instead, you want the site's content to be clear, precise and most of all engaging — am I right... or am I right?
So, the question is, how do we create website copy that can draw in potential customers? Well, I truly believe one of the easiest ways to do this is by eliminating the fluff—think of it as the middle man.
I know I know, it’s not just as simple as deleting half of your copy. You have to really think about what words you want to keep, and have genuine reasons for keeping them. To make the battle a little smoother, I’ve put together some of my top tips for getting rid of redundant copy — grab your coffee and let’s go!
How many adjectives do you really need?
Whether you’re a charity or a jewellery designer, we can all fall into the habit of dressing up our work with handfuls of adjectives. By no means are adjectives things of the past — they still play a very important part in distinguishing what your brand is all about, and how you can help... you just might not need as many as you first thought!
The trick: once you've drafted your copy, go through it with a thin comb and take out any adjectives that don't 100% resonate with your mission. This includes clicking the backspace bar when you come into contact with clumps of 2–3 adjectives — sorry... but they have to go!
Don’t be passive, be active!
Writing in an active voice will help you to get straight to the point, eliminate unnecessary words and tell your customers why they should choose you! For example:
• Active voice: I make delicious coffee.
• Passive voice: Delicious coffee is made by me.
Edit, edit, edit *drink coffee*, edit again
If you’re not thoroughly reading through your copy there’s a good chance it’s not perfect. The best way to simplify your website content is to spend just as much time (if not more) editing than you did writing!
I also find it helpful to get someone else to scan over it, as they normally pick up on certain things that you most probably think are fine.
Shorten yo' sentences
Remember you only have 10 seconds to grab your audience's attention? Well, this could be your saving grace.
Short, snappy sentences make it super simple for potential customers to understand what you do... and how you do it. As a guide, mention one major point about your business per sentence (this will help make sure your copy is easy to read).
See ya later jargon, you're out!
Ok, so just because you understand all the industry’s jargon and acronyms, doesn't mean your customers do too!
Try to simplify your content by removing phrases that over complicate your copy, and replace them with clear-cut descriptions that every Tom, Dick and Harry would understand.
Be specific with your words
It will come as no great surprise that people love specifics. As products and services become easier and easier to find, we really want to know what makes your business (or not-for-profit) different from the rest.
Instead of trying to find words that describe your services/mission, dig deeper into what it is that sets you apart. By doing this you’ll find your website content will naturally become more precise and less fluffy.
Hire a pro!
Of course, you could always save yourself a lot of time and stress by hiring a professional to do the hard yards for you! If you need help with your website copy, or simply want someone to read over it and make sure you're on the right track, give us a call—click here to get in contact today!