Website Copywriting

Your website’s got a lot of weight to carry. It’s your brand’s home on the net, charged with informing, engaging and persuading anyone who visits that your business is right for them. Say the right thing in the right way, and you’re on to a winner.

Mess it up, and you’re one click away from being forgotten.

The written content on your website will also determine how easy (or hard) it is for prospects to find you on Google and other search engines – quality website copywriting can make the difference between a number one ranking and a place in the dust bunnies on page 10.

Don’t let your website let you down.

Website Copywriting FAQs

What is website copywriting?

It does what it says on the tin, basically – website copywriting is the art (or, some argue, science) of writing content specifically for websites. What this generally means – and should mean – is that the content is:

  • Search engine optimised
  • Designed to be easy to read on a variety of devices
  • Conversion rate optimised
  • Engaging and informative

If you think of the internet as a big hall, bustling with people, your website is your employee standing in there. Website copywriting services are designed to give your man something to say that will make people stand up and take notice.

How much does website copywriting cost?

With questions like this, all anyone wants is a straight answer. And while I’m happy to give a straight answer, I can’t give one answer for all projects, because it really does depend.

Companies are often happy to spend a fortune on website design and development, beautiful photography to go with it, and sleek customer relationship management software to keep everything behind the scenes running smoothly. But when it comes to copywriting, there’s often this idea that it’s just words on a page. It really isn’t.

Quality website copywriting needs to take into account:

  • Your brand personality
  • Your visual brand and design
  • Search engine optimisation and conversion rate optimisation
  • User experience
  • The buyer’s journey

It’s definitely one of those kinds of copywriting that’s as much a science as an art, and it takes time, effort and skill. And all those lovely things costs money.

So, how much is your website going to set you back? Again, it’ll depend on:

  • How much content you need
  • How many rounds of revisions you want to include
  • How thoroughly you can brief your copywriter
  • How complex the subject matter is
  • How the content will be sourced – e.g. will your writer need to interview people?
  • How the content will be formatted – e.g. will your writer need to work with your designer?
  • Is extra content needed? e.g. case studies, e-books, email marketing series
  • Do you need your copywriter’s input on content marketing strategy?

In my experience, you should never expect to pay less than several hundred pounds for website content – frequently, you’ll find that the price you’re presented with is several thousand pounds.

Obviously we all have a budget to work to, but quality website content is worth its weight in gold, so consider your ROI before baulking at the fee you’re quoted.

How do you set your website copywriting prices?

Every website copywriting project I work on is different, so the price I charge will be tailored to the project specifications.

When a prospective client gets in touch with me about a web copywriting project, I try and find out as much as possible about what’s needed – the amount and type of content, the client, the subject matter I’ll be writing about.

I also need to know the deadline, plus who I’ll be working with and how in-depth my input will need to be – e.g. do you already have a brand ID, theme and concept, or do you need me to work with you to create those?

Once we’ve had a good chat about the project details, I go away and come up with a quote, which is itemised so you can see exactly what I’ll do for the price I’m asking. We’ll discuss any thoughts and questions, and, if you’re happy to go ahead, we’ll sign on the dotted line and get started.

Are website copywriting packages a good idea?

While I’m tempted to say ‘no’ right off the bat, there’s probably a time and a place for pre-priced website copywriting packages. Let’s take a quick look at the pros and cons:

Pros of website copywriting packages

  • They’re often relatively cheap
  • You know exactly what you’ll get and how much you’ll pay
  • You can buy them like an ‘off the shelf’ product
  • You can find lots of website copywriting packages on sites like UpWork and PeoplePerHour

Cons of website copywriting packages

  • They can be quite limited in scope
  • The content is not usually ‘written to fit’
  • They’re often priced ‘per page’, which tends to mean X number of quite wordy pages
  • The content is unlikely to be creative in style or format
  • The writer is unlikely to liaise with your designers and developers
  • Most high-end website copywriters don’t work this way

So, long story short, website copywriting packages are out there and they’re often pretty cheap and easy to get your hands on. Are you likely to get great content? Not really.

Website copywriting packages offer a one-size-fits-all approach to web content writing, which does nothing to help your brand stand out from the crowd.

Are website copywriting templates a good idea?

Website copywriting templates are one of those things that have their uses. Basically, they’re never going to get you the best content for your website, but if you’re determined to write your own copy, there are worse things you can do than have a look at some templates to get some ideas.

The pros of website copywriting templates

  • They’ll give you some ideas if you don’t know where to start
  • They’ll usually stop you getting it 100% wrong
  • They can help you to group your content logically

The cons of website copywriting templates

  • They are (by definition!) unoriginal
  • They limit how flexible you can be with your website content
  • They’re not tailored to your business or your audience

I’d hesitate to recommend copywriting templates wholeheartedly in any event but, if you’re definitely going to do a DIY-job on your website content, you could do worse than looking around at what other people suggest you include on there.

What are website copywriting best practices?

Website copywriting is about more than what you say and how you say it – it’s about making sure that the content you publish is optimised to be found and read online. That means writing for people and for Google.

Website copywriting best practices include:

  • Making sure all your content is unique
  • Formatting your content to be readable on all devices
  • Including short- and long-tail keywords in your content
  • Optimising URLs and meta data for SEO
  • Regular, clear but unobtrusive calls to action (CTAs)
  • Avoiding spam techniques like keyword stuffing and back-link grabbing

While you do often hear that ‘Google rewards unique content’, there’s a lot more to it than that. Your best bet to is to talk to an expert web copywriter about how to make sure your website ranks well on search engines and gives visitors what they need.

Website copywriting vs print copywriting – what are the differences?

One’s on a website, one’s in print. Seriously though, while both print and website copywriting need to be informative, well-written and purposeful, there are differences between the two.

Website copywriting needs to:

  • Take into account SEO and CRO
  • Be formatted for easy reading on digital devices
  • Work with standard and responsive design
  • Fit with the design and development aspects of a website

Print copywriting needs to:

  • Capture readers’ attention instantly
  • Be formatted for the page, avoiding things like orphans and widows
  • Fit neatly alongside photographs and other imagery

Do you work with designers on website copywriting projects?

I work with both designers and developers on many of the website copywriting projects I take on, particularly where the client is open to input on brand, user experience, and content marketing strategy.

In-depth liaison between your copywriter and your design and development team helps to create websites that really work – no clunky blocks of text where you don’t need them, no imbalance between written and visual content, nice little additions like loading text that may only be a line or two of copy, but that make all the difference to your customer experience (and that all-important bounce rate).

If I’m going to be working with other suppliers on a project, I account for that time in my quote so you won’t get any nasty surprises along the way.

How long does website copywriting take?

However long it needs to, really. Like other questions about website copywriting – how much does it cost, what does it involve etc. – the duration of a website copywriting project will depend on things like:

  • How much content you need
  • How much research your copywriter has to do
  • How many rounds of revisions are required
  • How much time your copywriter needs to spend liaising with others
  • How well you brief your copywriter
  • Whether you need content marketing in-put from your copywriter
  • Whether the project is delayed by design, development and other issues

Let’s say you want a simple website with five pages of copy, say, 500 words per page. You’ve briefed your copywriter, and given them all the information they need on your business and your brand. You want the content writing in isolation, so all the copywriter needs to do is send you a filled-out word document or similar. You’re probably looking at a couple of days to write something like that.

Add in more jobs, more complexity, more research and your project duration will go up.