Clean up the competition with a “Plan of Attack” that turns your website into a genuine conversion catcher
Get a personalised breakdown of your site that digs into where it might be going wrong when it comes to converting visitors, and what you can do to fix it.
A full break-down on the 4 most important pages of your site.
A transcript of the break-down video, so you can highlight what to fix.
All your questions answered on what to fix and focus on.
Pop quiz, hotshot. You just landed on a new website. What do you do? WHAT DO YOU DO?
Pick a site, any site (so long as you haven’t been there before). Jump to it. Spend 10-15 seconds browsing the homepage.
Then ask yourself these questions…
- What was the first thing that grabbed your attention?
- What did you spend the most time looking at (if anything)?
- How long did it take to work out what the website was about?
- How long did it take to understand what the page wanted you to do (if anything other than look at it)?
And finally… would you be willing to do what the page asked you to?
Congrats! You just did a mini-website review. And contrary to professional opinion, it can be super-useful feedback to get a few people to do this test for YOUR site.
No, you can’t be one of them. You’re way too close to the copy. Nor can you ask your friends or family who you’ve hit up a dozen times to “look at this new bit, whaddayathink?”.
- Get people who haven’t seen your site before
- Ask them the questions above
(Oh, if you want to send your unsolicited nuggets of wisdom to the site you just looked at, I’ll wait…)
Have I just invalidated the point of getting a professional website review?
In a word: nope.
Because, to use a wanky corporate term, there’s synergy in getting both casual visitors and a trained copywriter to cast their eyes over your site.
Getting feedback from visitors will help point you in the right direction… in a general “north” or “south” kind of way. It’s a useful start to pinpointing things that might not be clicking, but you’ll need more precise guidance to fix it.
Plus, you’ll have to filter out the “noise”. Things like “I’m not a fan of the colour scheme” (a very subjective matter), “I couldn’t find the top menu bar” (it’s at the top?) or “Hey, I just did this for the $5 Maccas voucher. Can I have it now?” (fine, here you go…).
And when it comes to the all-important question of conversion, your first and last stop must be a trained conversion copywriter.
What the heck is conversion copywriting?
Conversion copywriting is all about getting people to act. It’s a mix of two traditional forms of copywriting:
The persuasive/motivational elements of direct response copywriting (minus the length or hyper-aggressive selling)
The tone and value propositions from more general copywriting (without the “softly, softly”approach some copy takes when it comes to selling)
The best part of conversion copywriting? It can be applied anywhere, from websites to landing pages to emails… even blog posts can be engineered to motivate action.
Conversion is King
Your homepage is ultimately about one thing: conversion.
And before you go “woah, our site’s not selling anything” or “hang on, it’s just a headline, a couple of paragraphs and an opt-in button”, hear me out.
Conversion is about a lot more than just sales.
Signing up to a newsletter on “Ultimate Macramé” could be conversion. Downloading a guide on getting the most from extreme ironing (yeah, it’s a thing) could be conversion. Starting a trial on your Virtual Wafflemaker™ app could be conversion.
CONVERSION = ANY NEXT STEP YOU WANT VISITORS OR PROSPECTS TO DO
Dean is a pleasure to work with. He is talented, intelligent and funny.
I initially hired Dean to rewrite our website copy, it wasn’t long until he was writing our emails, support articles and most of our marketing material.
Highly recommend working with him!
The first step to boost conversion (the 90s pop group was wrong)
New Kids on the Block once famously sang “Step 1: we can have lots of fun”.
This is NOT the first step to boosting website conversion (it’s not even a step, period).
However, their “Step” 2 of having “so much we can do” might hold some slight, unintentional shred of relevance when it comes to optimising your site. Because for many pages, there ARE a lot of things that could be fixed up or improved. Even pages performing reasonably well can still test things to push that conversion needle higher.
Sometimes, a big conversion boost is just a headline or a hero tweak away. Other times, it’s a complete re-write or re-establishing of the page’s tone.
In many cases, it goes beyond the copy.
A lot of copywriters will review your copy and advise you to fix this paragraph or change that headline. But the structure of a page – the headlines, the buttons, the copy, the forms, and maybe even the tiny disclaimer at the bottom of the page – all play a part in getting people to act.
That’s why a conversion copywriter looks at everything: each element has to work in harmony to give your page the best chance of moving visitors towards taking the next step. And showing you where your most critical pages are flowing nicely or not quite gelling – around the copy AND the structure – is what this website review is all about revealing.
Your Personal Plan of Attack
Whenever I take on a website job, I can’t write the copy before sketching out how the messaging plays out down the page. This often takes the form of a wireframe (albeit a basic one, because hey – I’m a copywriter, not a graphic designer).
This allows me to map out the structure of a page. To evaluate if the messaging flows logically. To look for any “bumps” that might jar a reader into leaving. It adds time to the job, but it’s such a valuable task that it’s practically mandatory.
But what’s that got to do with your website?
Well, doing a website review is like “reverse wireframing”. I work backwards to determine what the structure of your page is and how that might be perceived by readers. Some of the questions your page has to answer include:
- What is the goal of this page? (the #1 question for ANY page… and if it doesn’t seem obvious, that’s a fail)
- Does this part make sense (coming before or after another section)?
- Do people need to read this part at this point?
- Why is that the opening copy on the page? What purpose does it serve?
- Why is that the closing copy on the page? Is it tying things up neatly and giving readers a final nudge to a next step?
- Is this moving readers to a logical conclusion?
Along with a few other questions (it often depends on the page). After that, I zero in on the copy: the ideas captured in it, how it’s worded, how it works with the page and so on.
All this gives you an incredibly deep look at what your page is doing. But more importantly, it gives you a personal plan of attack: an idea of what needs to change on the page in order to take it “next level” – along with my suggestions on tweaks you can do to lift performance.
One of the first questions you should ask when thinking about what goes where on your page is “how much do visitors know BEFORE they arrive here?”. If you’re selling widgets, there’s not much gained by starting the page talking about how good yours is if people don’t know widgets are. In cases like this, you’ve got to educate before you can persuade.
Bonus “Meta” Example!
The section further up this page talking about conversion copywriting is another example of educating readers. I can’t talk about conversion copywriting if readers have no idea what that means (and most people aren’t familiar with the term), so I start by clarifying it.
Here’s the complete package you get with your website review
This is a full break-down of the copy and structure on the 4 most important pages of your site (as chosen by you), along with suggestions of things you can to do to improve it. This comes in a 45 to 60 minute video recording of me conducting the analysis.
This is a transcript of that video, so you can easily highlight “to-dos” you pick up or work out which questions to ask in the…
We’ll jump on the phone, Zoom or Skype for a 30-minute meeting to answer all your questions or gain a better idea of your next actions.
And you get all that for a one-off cost of $185 AUD.
NOTE: I limit website reviews to 4 every month. More than a few people ask for help with their website, but for some reason or another, can’t afford a full website copy project. These reviews give them (and you) a way of getting a lot of my expertise at little cost. But while I enjoy doing these breakdowns, I am a copywriter, and at the end of the day, a writer’s gotta write, right?
Don’t you know that the time is right?
For those keeping score, that subheading comes straight from Step 5 of the New Kids “process”.
Awful 90s songs aside… if the time has come for you to go under the hood of your website, here’s how it plays out:
You book the review and fill out a form to provide the details to do the review
I jump onto your site and investigate,
recording the break-down as I go
We schedule a time to go through the findings on your site
We discuss those
findings and you get any burning questions answered
You venture forth with a complete plan to jumpstart your website
It was simply awesome to work with Dean. He’s definitely an A+ player in copywriting who communicates great, understands the client’s desires and delivers before the deadline. If he applies for your job, HIRE HIM!
IMPORTANT (for my sanity and time management):
When you fill out the form, you can enter any date or even just “ASAP” for when you want the review done. But as I’ve always got things mapped out for a week in advance, there’s a minimum period of 7 days before your review gets done, even if you enter “ASAP”. This also means the meeting will be scheduled around 8 – 10 days from time of booking.
©2018 dean mackenzie copywriting