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Mistakes to avoid when writing website copy

1. Using so much emphasis that NO ONE knows what you are trying to say.

Try to keep your bold, italic and caps to a minimum and save it for when you really need it.

2. Overuse of exclamation marks!!!!!!!! – One is enough unless you are writing a teenagers skating blog. OMG LMAO!!!!!

3. Underlining anything that isn’t a link – this is confusing for your audience. It’s commonly accepted that if a word or phrase is underlined it’s a hyperlink. So if it aint linking, keep it naked.

4. Try to avoid writing “Please feel free to look around”. No one needs permission to look at your website and it will make you appear amateur.

5. A main heading that says “Welcome to our website” is another overused, unneeded line. Search engines take notice of these H1 headings, so make them useful – use your keywords “Outstanding Real Estate in Christchurch”, make them inticing “Top tips for selling your house” or try some of these collected from CopyBlogger

  1. The Secret of [neon lights]
  2. Little Known Ways to [lose weight]
  3. Get Rid of [viruses] Once and For All
  4. What Everybody Ought to Know About [UV rays]
  5. Warning: [Two Out of Every Three People in Your Industry Will be Out of Work in 5 Years].
  6. How [this product] Made Me [a million bucks].
  7. If You’re [a parent], You Can [save money on..].
  8. [10] Ways to [gain muscle].
  9. Give Me [a week] and I’ll Give You [a better complexion].
  10. If You Don’t [eat right] Now, You’ll Hate Yourself Later.
  11. The Lazy [woman’s] Way to [beautiful skin].
  12. Do You Recognize the [15] Early Warning Signs of [meltdown]?
  13. See How Easily You Can [increase web traffic].
  14. You Don’t Have to Be [superman] to be [good in bed].
  15. Do You Make These [accountancy] Mistakes?

6. Pretentious drivel: Company X is dedicated to remaining fully committed to fulfilling your needs as pertaining to every project you summon our marketing assistance with.

7. Too much text – Write for skimmers. Online users scan the page looking for information they may want to read. Break up text into short paragraphs, use clear headings, bullet points and simple to-the-point text.

8. Apostrophe in the wrong place. It’s amazing how often people get these ones wrong. There are two situations where you use an apostrophe…

  • For contractions – it’s is short for it is
  • When something belongs to someone – New Media Design’s new blog – means the blog belongs to New Media Design

Copyblogger says

If still in doubt, leave the apostrophe out. It causes more reader confusion to insert an apostrophe where it doesn’t belong than it does to omit one. Plus, you can always plead the typo defense if you leave an apostrophe out, but you look unavoidably dumb when you stick one where it doesn’t belong.

1 Comment

  1. Mark says:

    Loving the 15 power copy statements for number five! Really strong, direct and active. Nice post… Thanks!

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