The Effectiveness of a Website Is NOT The Design (It’s This…)

As a web designer, it's easy to just get caught up in well…the design of a website. 

Makes sense.

But if you're exclusively focusing on just the design, you're missing a core piece of a successful website. 

Here I'm going to share with you what that is and what to do about it (even if you have no experience with this).

This is a bit of what comes first the chicken or the egg type of scenario and in this case we're asking the question:

What comes first the design or the copy?

The purpose of every website is to sell in some form or fashion that's going to look a bit different for every type of website out there.

This could be of course to:

  • purchase a product or service ​
  • book an appointment ​
  • call a phone number
  • fill out a get a quote form
  • subscribe to an email list

and this is where design and copy start to work together. 

When you put design and copy together, that is ultimately how you create an effective website.

Good copy is going to help with SEO. 

It is what is going to help build trust with website visitors.

And it is ultimately what is going to help convert that visitor to take the next action step the business wants them to.

An Example

If you think about a button being placed on a website, the design of the button is what is going to capture the attention of the visitor and draw their eye over to that button. But it is the copy…what it says on that button, what surrounds that button that is ultimately going to convince that website visitor to actually click.

So this is really about finding that sweet spot because the best copy without any design…well it's not going to hold the attention the same way.

At the same time if you have an amazing website but it has bad copy, it's ineffective because it is not going to convert the visitors in the same way.

This is why smart web designers talk to their clients about the importance of copy.

This is why smart business owners actually take the time and money to invest in good copy for their website.

This is how you don't just build a website that is pretty but it starts to actually convert.

So Who Writes The Copy?

In this case I don't typically like to have a business owner be the one to write the copy. A business owner is definitely the expert in their business.

They know their products, their services like the back of their hand.

They know it inside and out so that's why they should definitely be providing all of the details, they should be reviewing it for accuracy but that doesn't necessarily make a business owner a great copywriter.

So there's a couple of options here:

  1. Hire a copywriter
  2. Write the copy yourself (assuming you have some copywriting skills) or 
  3. Have an AI tool write the copy for you

Some copywriters, good ones at least can be very expensive but that is because the work that they do actually pays off.

Let's say you don't have copywriting skills or don't have the time or desire to write copy for client's sites…

Here is a tool that writes copy for you. And it's pretty dang amazing. 

It has artificial intelligence write the copy for you and it's quite amazing. I even walk you through how to do it here.

You can literally have everything written for you from headlines and  paragraphs to service descriptions.

This is a great way to have copy that helps you convert and sell so the websites you are building are highly effective. 

Next Steps

When you take a look at the next client website you're going to be working on (or even your own websites) I want you to go in and take inventory of the content that already exists.

Take a look at what content doesn't exist but really should be added to the website. And take a look at the effectiveness of the copy on the website.

Here's a good way to do that:

Go into the site's analytics account and take a look at the top landing pages on the site that have a high bounce rate. Also, take a look at the exit pages (where visitors leave the site).

Visit those pages to see why this may be. Does the page not function? Is it not clear what the visitor should do next? Or is the copy not complete or is it not compelling enough?

If the design is good but the copy is just not up to par and holding their attention, this is where you want to focus.

Copy, ultimately, is what is answering the question “what is in it for me?”

And if that question isn't answered really quickly, you better believe that website visitor is out of there.

So take this as a reminder that when you are working on any website, you need to make sure you have very strong copy and you start incorporating copy into your:

  • Discussions with clients
  • Process as you're building out these websites 

And doing so will ultimately get you those results that you want for you clients. That of course will help you land more clients easily and charge more of a premium for your work.

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