So your client is ready to create or redo their website. It’s easy enough to write up some content and slap it on the pages. But are you writing the right info for them? Are you speaking to THEIR audience? Are you addressing their value proposition?
When you set out to draft content for a website, it’s more than slathering a few words on a page that links to their business or products page. You need each word to count for them. You need writing with meaning. And with persuasion. It’s up to you to help tell their site users what to do once they get there. Are you doing all that? And are you answering our 14 cover-everything questions as you write?
The 14 Key Questions
Answering these questions as you write (or have someone else write for you) leads to a well-thought-out, organized, and informative website.
- What are their goals? Before you start creating a website, you need to know what they want to achieve. This could be making sales, blogging, setting them as a subject matter expert in their field, all of the above — whatever your client wants. But you need to know the website’s purpose.
- What is the mission? You should have a clear mission statement for the client’s business, and it should be apparent to all who visit their site. You want them to know who your client is and what they do right away, so don’t bury this information. Make it front-and-center and clear.
- What is their value proposition? And there it is again: that big mysterious phrase. Just what is the value proposition? Basically, this is the value your client promises to deliver and the reason their visitors should buy specifically from THEM. You need a clear statement that encompasses how their product solves or improves the customers’ problem, the specific benefits their product offers, and the reason why they are the bee’s knees, the number one resource, the king of kings of this product. Simple enough?
- What really sets their business apart? Are the employees the most dedicated? Is there a special manufacturing process you should showcase? Do their proceeds go to a fund near and dear to everyone’s heart? Tell your readers!
- What is their personal brand? This is unique to them and something worth spending some time on, if you haven’t already. Their branding on their website should be consistent with everything else your company distributes.
- Who is their audience? You need to know who you are writing to. This will help you determine the tone and word choice. Who is their target market?
- What kind of voice do they want to project? Will it be serious and definitive or chatty with a side of snark? Consider their product, brand, and vision. How would you present the information if you were talking to someone in person? This is often a great way to write, too.
- How long is your audience’s attention span? Consider how long visitors will stay on the site. If they are coming to read extensive research, they will likely stay longer. If their market tends to visit sites from their phones, you’ll need to write concise, scannable content.
- What do people really want to know about them personally? They probably don’t care that they prefer to eat with chopsticks and that their favorite color is fuchsia, especially if they’re in the IT industry. However, if they are passionate about animal welfare and their product relates to animals or benefits animal charities, share away.
- Who is the competition? Consider their competitors. Visit their websites. What are they doing that you can do better? Check out their prices, promotions, and catchphrases. Be creative and draw the audience in.
- What are the highest revenue products or services? You’ll definitely want to showcase these. Tout their benefits, have plenty of images, and show their customers why these products are unbeatable.
- What is their call to action? This is a fancy content phrase for “What do you want them to do?” Do you want them to download your free e-book? Purchase products? Sign up for classes? Be clear and make it exciting for them to take the action!
- How does your client prefer to be contacted? If they don’t check their email but once a week, you probably don’t want to encourage people to email with questions. Whichever methods of contact they will be most responsive to is what you should list.
- What happens once a client contacts them? Have a plan for once your client receive contact and tell their customers what to expect. “You’ll receive a response in 24 hours.” Something like this is appropriate. Don’t leave ‘em hanging.
And there you have it, folks! The best fourteen questions to ask yourself in order to build a stellar site for your clients. We want them to succeed as much as you do.