4 Ways to Start Writing Great Headlines that Convert

how to write great headlines
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As the saying goes, “You shouldn’t judge a book by its cover.”

Even so, many people do. A book’s cover is what attracts potential readers and convinces them to learn more about its contents. In the end, it plays a huge role in whether a book sale is actually made or not.

Just like the cover design is crucial to a book, a headline is crucial to web copywriting. No matter what you write, your headline or title is what attracts the reader initially to your content and convinces him/her to keep reading.

Wondering how to better your chances of prospective customers reading your web copy? Here are four rules of thumb to keep in mind when writing great headlines that convert.

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Avoid these 5 Tips when Writing Website Copy

your website's copywriting shouldn't be boring
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Anyone can create a website, but not everyone can create a website that will generate results. Wondering what the key difference is between the two?

One word: copywriting.

The words you are putting on your website’s pages need to be engaging, convincing, interesting – and a whole lot more. Here’s what to avoid so that you create the best copy for your website.

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Blog Copywriting Tips: 5 Steps to Follow when Writing Effective Blogs

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According to Forbes, having a blog on your website increases search engine traffic, humanizes your brand and increases leads.

But a blog will only achieve those results if it’s written properly! Here are five of the best blog copywriting tips we suggest you follow when writing your small business’ blog.

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Essential Website Copywriting Tips

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Your website must be attractive enough to draw the reader in and be clean enough to facilitate easy navigation. But without effectively written copy, it won’t be accomplishing either.

Here are some tips to keep in mind when completing great copywriting for your small business’ website.

Keep Your Eye on the Prize

Remember your target audience while completing website copywriting. Think about the who, what, where, when, why and how when it comes to your product and service offerings. That way, web visitors can quickly determine whether your company can fulfill their needs or not.

At the same time, use a conversational, relatable tone throughout your writing. Too much industry jargon can quickly drive away a potential buyer. 

Keep It Simple

When you’re on a website, you want to find the information you need quickly and easily. So when you complete your website’s copy, make it easy to skim. Do so by incorporating some (or all!) of the following into your website’s copywriting:

  • Headings and subheadings
  • Bulleted and numbered lists
  • Text formatting (underline, bold, colour)
  • Images and white space

Keep it Relatable

Using clear, second-person narrative can make the reader feel like you are having a conversation directly with them. When addressing the reader, use “you” and when speaking about your business, use “our.” This creates more relatability between your reader and your business and shows that your company can answer your reader’s problem.

Keep it Interesting

You don’t like reading boring copy. I don’t like reading boring copy. Your web traffic won’t like reading boring copy.

Sure, there’s important information you need to discuss on your site – but it doesn’t need to be done in a stilted way. Try to keep your copy as interesting as possible. Some pages, like your About Us, can be even more informal depending on your business. Have some fun with your website’s copywriting!

Keep it Current

Is there anything more off-putting to you as a web visitor then when you contact a business about a listed product or service, only to find out it’s no longer offered?

Oh wait – there is: how about if you show up at a business during its advertised hours of operation, only to find out that it’s no longer open at that time?

Every so often, check your website’s information to ensure it’s still relevant and reflects the business that you are today.

Putting it All Together

Your website’s copywriting has a big job to do: it has to increase brand recognition and convert customers, but remain interesting to the reader, too. Choosing a web design template can be challenging enough for many small business owners – but writing effective website copy? That’s a whole other ballgame.

It’s not a challenge when you hire us to complete your website copywriting! Let our 10+ years of website copywriting experience work for you! Contact us today to learn more about the services we provide as Toronto copywriters.

Infographic: 17 Unknown Facts About Small Business Copywriting

It’s getting more and more difficult to be successful as a small business owner without effective web copywriting.

Think about it: the majority of consumers head to good old Google for information and answers. And if that consumer lands on your website and finds a lack of engaging, relevant copy, guess what they’re going to do next?

That’s right, they will choose another website – probably your direct competitors’!

All but ten percent of organizations are using copywriting in their marketing efforts. But not all copywriting is the same! Only quality, error-free, SEO-friendly copy gets people to hang around your site, build interest in your brand and eventually create more customer conversions.

Learn more about small business copywriting with these interesting facts!


As Toronto copywriters, we can get you results you deserve from your small business’ copywriting! Arrange a free consultation with us today.

5 Small Business Management Tips that Will Save You Time

small business management tips

As a small business owner, you feel like you work constantly.

Even on your ‘off-time’ (what is that?!), the wheels of your mind never stop turning. You’re constantly thinking about how to improve your business, get more customers and increase your sales.

But no matter how many hours you work, you can never seem to get to the end of your to-do list.

When you’re working in this manner, it’s only so long before you suffer from burn-out. And as a small business owner, you definitely can’t afford that to happen!

That’s why it’s important to start working smarter. Here are five small business management tips that can help you accomplish that!

#1) Plan Your Time

Improving the productivity of you and your team starts with getting organized.

Take some time at the beginning of each week to review your business’ projects and goals. Then create a master list of all the tasks you need to accomplish.

Next, estimate how long each task would take to complete and prioritize each task. Open up your calendar and schedule a suitable time to focus on each specific priority.

Trying to remember things that need to be completed is an energy drainer. Instead, write down any item that needs to be done so that you no longer have to remember it yourself.

Solution: Make a list of three tasks that you want to accomplish each day.

#2) Stop Wasting Time

Many times, meetings that are held with the goal of increasing efficiency end up doing the complete opposite. They can quickly get off track, drag on for hours and create confusion for your staff about what still needs to be done.

Even worse, they can leave employees feeling mentally exhausted which can affect the rest of their workday.

Solution: Before scheduling a meeting, think about whether the information can be shared in an email or memo instead. If a meeting is still necessary, try to limit your meeting to a half hour or less.

#3) Just Do It

It’s easy to get into a habit of putting off certain business tasks by telling yourself you’ll complete them tomorrow.

But then tomorrow happens and they remain on your to-do list.

Apply the Nike philosophy and “just do it” when it comes to tasks that need to be done! For any task that takes you less than two minutes to complete, stop putting it off and do it immediately. If a task requires longer than a couple of minutes to complete, either schedule it to be completed at a later date or see if it can be delegated to someone else on your team.

Solution: Begin your day with the task that you least prefer before you accomplish anything else. This helps set the tone for a more productive day!

#4) Control Your Email

Our attention spans are getting shorter and shorter. Receiving constant alerts for new emails and social media comments isn’t helping.

How many times have you started completing a task only to abruptly stop it when you receive a new email notification?

When was the last time you took a few minutes to scroll through social media?

Regularly pausing your work to start a new task causes you to start and stop a different train of thought – creating more work for you in the end.

Solution: Schedule a maximum of three times each day to check your email and respond to social media comments. Ignore (or stop) phone notifications otherwise! When sending emails, use short, efficient messages and only include necessary parties.

#5) Outsource When Possible

You only have so many hours in each day. Wouldn’t you rather spend them focussing on key business aspects that you excel at rather than ones you struggle with?

Outsourcing is one of the best ways to get tasks accomplished that require the skills you lack.

Was math never your strong suit? Then outsource your company’s payroll to a bookkeeper.

See the benefits of a regular e-newsletter but regularly experience writer’s block? Then check out a copywriter.

Need a new website that you can drive traffic to? Look for an affordable web designer.

Sure, outsourcing may initially seem like a luxury for small business owners. But when you use an affordable one, it actually isn’t! Plus, hiring an expert to complete a task that your skillset isn’t suitable for can bring savings in time, stress and productivity.

Solution: Decide what business tasks you dislike the most or are least qualified to complete. Then find a freelancer to fulfill that role.

As a small business owner, it doesn’t take long to get overwhelmed. But by implementing the small business management tips above, you can quickly experience an increase in productivity and a decrease in your stress level!

For more information about the services we provide as Toronto copywriters, contact us today!

Website Copywriting Best Practices to Implement Immediately

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Even if your website is currently getting lots of traffic, there’s no time to sit back and relax.

For your site to continue to rank well in search engine results, you need to keep it updated and be posting regular content. That’s why having a blog is key!

You also need to stay on top of the latest proven methods when it comes to creating website copy that will bring leads that convert. To make things easier for you, we’ve incorporated the most recent website copywriting best practices below.

Know Your Audience

How do you create great copy without knowing who you’re targeting?

Simply put, you can’t.

It’s super important to first complete market research so that you can come up with a buyer persona.

Determine who your target audience is, their demographics, their pain points and more.

Only then can you craft website copy that will be relatable to the reader. This helps influence them to take action on your website!

Keep it Interesting

In only a matter of seconds, your website’s visitors will decide whether to stay around on your site or not.

To stop them from exiting and going elsewhere, you need to keep your copy interesting.

Pay attention to your headlines and make them compelling so that readers want more. And don’t forget about the importance of your graphics selection!

Above all, you need to write in a way that will captivate your audience, leaving them eager to read the following line of text.

Make it Readable

Think about what you want when you visit websites:

  • You want answers to your problems using information that’s clearly and concisely presented
  • You want to be able to quickly find the information you need without reading a page in its entirety
  • You don’t want to think too hard – you want the information to be presented to you in an easy-to-follow format

When your customers have to start searching your website for information, they will quickly become frustrated.

That frustration will soon lead to an exit from your website.

Avoid that from happening by using the following tips throughout your web copy:

  • Bold text for headings and keywords to keep readers’ eyes moving down the page
  • Captivating headlines, bullets and numbered lists to break up content
  • Short sentences (average sentence length should be 16 words)
  • A clean look. Experiment with colours, fonts and graphics to find what works the best with your audience.

Keep Search Engine Optimization (SEO) in Mind

You can’t afford to have poor content on your site.

But even if you have the best content, it won’t produce results if it’s not search engine optimized.

You need to complete some keyword research, but avoid keyword stuffing. Most importantly, always ensure that your copy is high quality!

Don’t forget about including effective call-to-actions (CTAs) throughout your copy. Encouraging readers to share your information on social media, sign up for your email list or download an e-book are some effective CTA examples.

Website copywriting can’t be learned overnight. To be honest, it requires lifetime learning. There are always new ways of writing better, of ranking higher in Google and of increasing customer conversions.

We work hard to keep informed of them – and will pass that knowledge on to you, too. Be sure you stay informed by signing up for our blog emails!

5 Questions to Ask a Potential Copywriter

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So you’ve finally made the leap and have decided to outsource your company’s copywriting needs? Good for you! Not only will this move free up time in your busy schedule, but hiring an expert should bring you more web traffic – and a higher customer conversion rate, too.

However, getting results from your copywriting is only possible if you hire a copywriter who knows what they’re doing. Here are five important questions that will help you hire the best copywriter for your needs.

#1) How Long Have You Been a Copywriter?

Experience matters when it comes to writing copy that will be engaging, informative and accurate. Only experienced copywriters know how to make that happen.

Choose a copywriter who has been in business for at least five years. Doing so means he/she has been around long enough to establish a reputation, plus there should be plenty of work samples.

The world of copywriting – especially SEO copywriting – is constantly evolving. Someone who has been copywriting for a while will know this and should be well versed on current best practices.

#2) What Type of Industry Are You Comfortable Writing About?

As much as we hate to admit it, we’re not good at everything.

And that’s not a bad thing! At Sarah McKenzie Copywriting Services, we are firm believers that we should “do what we do best and outsource the rest” ourselves. (That’s why we don’t do our own accounting!)

The same logic applies to copywriters. Not all writers are familiar – or even interested – in writing about certain industries, so asking this question can quickly screen out unsuitable candidates.

#3) What is Your Schedule Like?

Working with a freelancer can be a challenging relationship if both parties aren’t honest with each other from the beginning.

Since most freelancers are remotely based, there isn’t a chance for many face-to-face meetings. Instead, emails and phone calls are the main communication methods used.

Freelancers likely have multiple clients and competing deadlines. If it sounds like your client already has a lot on their plate, ask how they will be able to accommodate you as a client. For example, we request that our blog clients submit their topic requests to us a minimum of two weeks in advance. Otherwise, they risk not getting their copywriting completed on schedule.

If you’re more of a last-minute person, be upfront to potential copywriters and see if this would work for him/her.

#4) Can I See Samples of Your Work?

More than likely you’ve already checked out a potential copywriter’s website by the time you reach out to them for a consult. But if you haven’t, now’s the time! Seeing for yourself what type of copy they have created in the past can give you an idea if their writing style is suitable for your company.

Asking for testimonials or references from past clients can also provide huge insight into a particular copywriter’s strengths. Getting him/her to complete a test project first (before signing a contract) can provide you with an even deeper understanding of their writing style.

#5) What Can You Tell Me About My Company?

A great copywriter takes the time to research each piece of copy they produce. To find out if your potential copywriter has this skill set, ask them to tell you what they already know about your company. Find out what he/she thinks your target market is and what style of writing should be used throughout your copy.

A copywriter who is able to answer these questions accurately means that he/she has done research prior to your interview and is genuinely interested in getting your business.

Hiring the Best Toronto SEO Copywriter For Your Needs

You’ve decided to outsource copywriting to make your life easier and get more results for your company. That’s why hiring “just any copywriter” won’t do!

If you’re going to outsource your company’s copywriting, make sure you do it right. After you’ve found some potential copywriters using these tips, be sure to ask them the five questions above. And if you’re considering hiring us as your Toronto, Hamilton, Burlington SEO copywriter, then know you’re choosing a company who is highly experienced, professional and affordable.

See for yourself! Contact us today for a free consultation about your blog, web, press release, or other copywriting needs!

The Top 4 Web Copywriting Tips to Create Copy that Converts

ecommerce

So you’re finally getting traffic to your website – but that traffic isn’t converting into more leads. Why?

Nine times out of ten, it’s because you have poor web copy.

Web copy that doesn’t relate to the reader and influence behaviours just won’t work. But luckily for you, we know what does!

Here are four major web copywriting tips to follow when creating web copy that will convert.

Speak in Plain Language

You don’t have much time to convince your website’s visitors to spend time on your site.

In fact, you have less than 15 seconds.

If a visitor doesn’t immediately find what they are looking for, they will leave – and find another website that does.

The best way to give the reader the information that they want? Avoid fluff. Write clearly and concisely and present your information in the same manner.

Consider Readability

The majority of readers are skimmers.

Although they may start off reading a page’s intro, they will quickly gloss over the rest looking for answers to their questions.

Use captivating headlines and bullets to help readers scan through your copy. Combined with short paragraphs, breaking up your page can help a reader avoid feeling overwhelmed by an abundance of information.

Make it Relatable

Always, always, always, write to your audience.

Research what your target audience’s pains and nuances are and (quickly and concisely) address them throughout your writing.

Determine why your product/service is wanted, what people use it for and what is most important to them when they are shopping around. Use the information gathered to write compelling copy that truly speaks to your audience’s needs.

Keep it Updated

You likely already know that your blog page needs to be updated regularly – but what about your other web pages?

Keep your home page, about page and service/product listing pages complete with timely information. You wouldn’t want a customer to place an order for a product that’s no longer available, would you?

Your company’s hours, locations and service areas may change over time. If that happens, make sure your web pages reflect the company you currently are.

Creating great web copywriting is a difficult skill to master. That’s why we are here to help!

With ten years of experience, we can help you create effective copy that will convert into more customer traffic. Want to see for yourself? Reach out for a free consultation about our copywriting services in Toronto, Hamilton and Burlington!

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