September 20, 2016 by Andrew M. Warner 72 Comments
Writing Website Content – Step by Step article cover imageWriting website content that truly delivers doesn’t have to be difficult.
Yet, there are those that write dull, boring and repetitive content that’s already out there and …
… those that don’t.
Which one are you?
Because if you want to take your website content to the next level, you need to transform it from listless into a mind-blowing masterpiece every time you hit the publish button.
And in this post, I’m going to walk you through a 3-step process you can use to achieve that.
Let’s dive right in.
Free Checklist: Download a free checklist that shows you exactly how to use the strategy from this post (step-by-step).
Why You’re Writing Website Content That’s Boring and Not Generating Any REAL Traffic
You know that feeling you get when you’re reading a post that seems to go absolutely nowhere?
Every few sentences you let out a deep breath, roll your eyes and anxiously wait for them to ‘get to the point.’
Only, they never do.
And that’s when frustration sets in — and content scanning starts, doesn’t it?
Or worse … your mind wanders and you exit off the page.
I won’t lie. That happens to me a lot. But I have a good reason for doing that.
The content was mind-numbingly boring.
You might be thinking to yourself:
“That’s not me. I write really good content that I spend a lot of hours on.”
There’s only one problem:
Good isn’t good enough.
Your website content needs to be compelling to keep readers engaged. And I’m not the only one who thinks this way either.
Two prominent marketers shared some tips to writing website content effectively that’s worth paying attention to.
Here’s what John Jantsch, of Duct Tape Marketing, had to say:
And Henneke Duistermaat, of Enchanting Marketing, also shared some truthful points:
Because the better the content, the more appealing it’ll be to readers.
Do you think by doing that it that will lead to more traffic, more leads and more sales?
You better believe it.
Still want to learn how to write content that transforms your writing from meh to great? Let me walk you through the step-by-step process.
The 3-Step Process to Write Web Content that Attracts Readers Like a Magnet
I’m sure you’ve heard a few of those content writing tips for beginners, right?
“Write for a human”
“Make your content stand out”
“Write well written content”
I’ll be honest with you:
The majority of those tips are uber-vague. Especially if you don’t know to write content that readers want to read.
Fortunately, there’s a process that you can use to write compelling content every time. And I go over it in this infographic:
Now that you know the steps, let’s not delay any further.
Step #1: Provide Actionable Content
Opinion-based articles don’t mean ish.
But, that doesn’t stop people from writing them, does it?
Here’s the truth:
If you want your content to be something special, you can’t give people opinions. You need to give them content they can use right away.
In other words, meaty content.
Not too long ago, I operated another site called Shade of Info — and this was one of the few guest posts I published:
screenshot tom southern
In it, Tom discussed 10 techniques to use to generate more traffic to your blog. And while others would have just create bland content that summarized each technique, Tom saw it as an opportunity to do much more.
What did he do exactly?
He went extremely in-depth with each item on the list:
And even described HOW to do it:
screenshot tweetable quotes
And readers clearly appreciated that …
web content comment
Which goes to show you that when you create meaty content people could actually use, they let you know about it.
web content comments
But here’s the thing:
Actionable, meaty content isn’t enough? You also need to be thorough with the information you provide. To the point that it blows everything else out of the water.
Kevin Duncan wrote a guest post for Boost Blog Traffic on an often talked about topic …
… blog commenting:
screenshot kevin duncan
Where most posts on that topic lacked certain information, Kevin made his more thorough.
He didn’t just list various points that were wishy-washy and extremely vague. He provided the initial point:
And went into more depth with each point:
And because of this detailed information, it made it MUCH more valuable than any other blog post on the topic.
Which resulted it being one of the most shared and commented posts on that blog.
ACTION TIP #1: How to Create Actionable Content.
If you want to create something your readers will enjoy, actionable content is the answer. Here’s how to write for the web and get readers to act.
1. First, research similar posts.
This is important because you want to find popular topics that readers want information on.
For example, let’s say you’re in the weight loss space.
Just enter the keyword “weight loss” in a tool like BuzzSumo:
weight loss example
You’ll immediately get a wide variety of popular topics — but take a good look at the total shares some of these posts have.
At this point, you want to choose one of those topics and study it. See what information they’re lacking — and what you can improve on.
2. Write web content that fairly easy to understand.
In other words, pay close attention to the structure.
Because even though your goal may be to create content that converts, you need to make sure your content is written for the skimmers.
And the simpler you make it, the better.
3. Lastly, tell how to do, not what to do
This is the most important step.
If you want to provide real actionable tips, you have to teach “how to do.”
Brian Dean is one marketer that does this a lot on his blog. Take his post, “SEO Campaign Case Study: 1,117 Social Shares and 15% More Organic Traffic (In 2 Weeks)” for example:
Though the main focus is on a case study, he still goes into detail on how to achieve the same results. And he shows readers step-by-step:
You can do the same thing.
Just remember that even though you’re explaining a process, you still need to break it down. The last thing you want is your reader getting information, but not having a clue what to do with it.
Which leads us to step #2 …
Step #2: Give Useful Examples That Actually Helps Your Boosts the Value of Your Content
This may sound simple, but it’s not.
As good as content is by itself, what people really want is content that:
Provides solutions to the problem.
Shows, step-by-step, the actual solution.
Let me show you what I mean …
Not too long ago, Shae Baxter published a post on how to get more email subscribers:
But rather than making it an opinion-based article, she modified it and constructed a case study of a reader that actually achieved those results:
The best part?
She realized that list building was an issue that many of her readers were facing. And instead of writing about theories, she provided the next best thing.
A real world example of someone who had a solution that worked:
And she guided you step-by-step through the process:
But this is just the tip of the iceberg …
Because people love reading stories, case studies allow readers to learn what the results were — and how to achieve similar results. This makes them the perfect form of content that informs and educates.
And the type of website content writing you should be doing.
ACTION TIP #2: Create a Dual ‘Case Study/How To’ Post That Hooks Readers
As much as readers like posts that share results, they prefer learning how to do the same thing and achieve similar results more.
Here’s how to do it:
1. Share Whatever Results You Achieve
This is obvious, isn’t it?
You need to provide the results of whatever your post is about. Whether it’s an increase in subscribers, a successful launch, more targeted traffic, etc.
Robbie Richards once published this post: Case Study: How I Increased Traffic 272% In 30 Days (Without Spending A Penny).
In it, he shared the results of a post that collected 233 backlinks:
And increased traffic to the overall site in 30 days:
But what he does next is what readers, who are interested in the post, would appreciate.
2. Provide Instructions on HOW Readers Can Do The Same
Here’s why this is so important:
Chances are those reading Robbie’s case study already knew the same answers he did to get those results. But, they’re more concerned about the how.
How to get similar answers and results.
And Robbie delivered, step-by-step, how to do it:
You can do the same thing by educating and informing your readers.
And just like that, you’ll have compelling content that’s more that just opinions. You’ll have content that guides readers through the entire process.
Bottom line: Instead of just explaining your results, offer advice on how others can do the same. Because readers only want to know about information that can help them.
Step #3: Create Appealing Visuals to Compliment Your Content
Most people get images wrong.
Want to know why?
They choose to use uninspiring stock photos that’s been done to death.
They use random images that don’t add anything to the post.
Content that gets ignored because it’s not visually appealing.
And according to this study, 94% of content with relevant images get more views.
Which means it’s an absolute must to create visual masterpieces.
Take a quick look at this post by Andrea Beltrami:
At first glance, one of the first things you’ll notice is that she incorporates her main colors in most of the images she shares. And all of this is done on purpose.
Whether it’s tip images:
Or even checklists:
The images are not only visually appealing, but showcases her brand — and makes her work more recognizable on social media. Because, at the end of the day, that’s exactly what you want.
However, let’s be honest:
Not all of the visual imagery you use in your content will be brandable. Most will be used just to add a little oomph to your content.
Charts and graphs
And as long as it’s relevant to what you’re talking about, you’re golden.
PRO TIP: Best Tools to Use to Create Visual Content
If you want to create really great visuals, then I recommend trying either of these tools.
Canva is probably the easiest thing you can use out there to create really great visual content.
Just sign up for a free account …
… and get started on creating and editing your images:
This is one of the best tools out there for editing photos.
Although I recently started using BeFunky, it’s quickly become my go to image editor for images I use on the site.
But what’s great about this tool is the amount of things you can do with it.
You can create banners, collages, edit images, the whole nine yards.
With this tool, there’s no limit to how unique you can truly make your images.
Think You’re Ready to Start Writing Website Content That Delivers?
If so, then you’ll definitely want the free step-by-step checklist that I put together.
It contains every actionable step from this post.
If you really want to get started with this process, then your first step is to download the checklist below.
Click on the image and enter your email address to get access to it:
website content writing content upgrade
Filed Under: Content Marketing, Writing