How To Write Compelling Optimized Web Copy – Part 5

“Headlines matter now more than
they ever did”

Let’s recap what you’ve learned about what’s involved in writing optimized web copy that gets readers to act:

  • You know why it’s important to know your target market like the back of your hand.
  • You’ve learned why you must research and using the right keywords and phrases, so you can include them in the right places on your web pages.
  • And last week, I discussed the different types of research that will make the difference between a useless website, (is as useful as a paperweight), or one that attracts visitors and converts them to paying clients.

But I bet you’re thinking … you haven’t written a single word of web copy yet.

Well, today in Part 5 of How to Write Optimized Web Content…

You’re going to start by learning how writing powerful headlines will give your web visitors a reason to keep reading.

From Seth Godin’s blog

“Headlines provoke and introduce. They cajole and they position.”

“No headline = no communication.”

Just in case you don’t know Seth Godin – he’s a highly respected marketing guru and a best-selling author, so he knows his stuff.

The purpose of a headline on a web page (and every page needs a headline) is to immediately tell the reader they’re in the right place to get the help they want, so they’ll stay on your site.

There are many proven “formulas” to write engaging headlines such as:

  • “How to…”
  • Showing a big benefit
  • Ask a provoking question
  • Make a promise
  • “Secrets of…”
  • (There are a ton more, but I’m not getting into it today)

And no matter which one you end up using, your headline needs to get the reader’s attention in about 3 seconds or less.

Also try to write headlines that are clear, concise, unique, and include specifics if possible.

Since Google looks at the copy in your main headlines to tell them what the page is about, each page headline should also include the primary keyword phrase you came up with in your keyword research.

Personally, I write 15-20 possible headlines.  Some will be good – some will be bad, and everything in between.

Then I’ll send them to people that fit the target market, and ask them to tell me which ones get their attention the fastest. (That’s my own marketing survey).

After deciding on the best one for the main headline, I’ll use the others as subheadings later, when I write the actual copy.

Coming up with a great headline for your web pages that will attract search engine visitors, and compel them to continue reading isn’t an option …

Great headlines are crucial! (That is, if you want more leads and customers).

And just like the other basics I’ve shared, it takes time and work. It’s not too often a great headline just jumps out of the blue, without any thought.

Just like any other profession or trade, practice and preparation is the key to success.

If you’ve been reading my previous posts about writing compelling and optimized web copy, by now you should start to realize how much time and effort truly goes into it.

So, unless you’re willing to spend your valuable time learning the ropes so you can write web that works, you may want to consider hiring a professional copywriter to get the job done right.

By the way…That would be me. : – )

Any comments or questions?

To get more information about finding good keywords, SEO, the benefits of powerful copy, about this post, web/online advice, or about my direct response web copywriting services, e-mail me or call me at 603-686-5140.

In case you missed the first two parts of this series, here are the links.

Till next week then…

What are your thoughts?

If you want help with your marketing strategy, writing effective sales copy, have any comments, or have a marketing project you’d like help with, e-mail me or call me at 603-686-5140

And visit for help with Website design, writing SEO copy, e-mail marketing, or other online marketing strategies.

To your marketing success!

Merrill Clark
Website and Marketing Copywriter