Writers? Not so much. Copywriters? Not at all.
Back then it was all about the technology and the look. I went to startup meetings where the coders and designers had been working on the site for weeks, or maybe months, and then came to me, almost as an afterthought, and asked me to add some words.
Sounds crazy, but it’s true.
And as you may recall, the internet crash of 2001 was caused in large part by hugely inflated values being attached to online businesses that really weren’t businesses at all. In other words, they didn’t make money. They just worked reasonable well, and looked good.
Also, when I was speaking at events back then, my message was that the web was actually all about the words. And that those words couldn’t just be cut and pasted from print or other media.
I didn’t always face a very receptive audience with that message. Particularly when I stood up in front of 500 designers and told them that their job was to showcase my words.
But after 2001, when a new breed of business people came to the web, there was a growing awareness that online companies needed to make money. All of a sudden business owners began to pay more attention to things like clickthrough, conversation rates, A/B split testing…and revenues.
And when you think in those terms you come face to face with the fact that you can’t achieve good results in these areas just with technology and design.
You need words.
In short, it has taken commerce online almost 20 years to figure out what the direct response industry had known for about 100 years…If you want results, you have to use great copy.
That’s right, when it comes to conversion rates and revenues, the true rock stars of the web are now the copywriters.
I’m not saying that the technology and design are not important. They are. But the copy is even more important. In my work with optimizing site pages, the biggest increases in performance usually come about as a result of simplifying the design and improving the copy.
The technology? Well, that’s pretty much a commodity now. For most sites you don’t need to write pages and pages of custom code. You just grab what you need off the shelf, or use an available content management system.
And if you think that every website is now well served by professional copywriters, you would be mistaken. Certainly there are some smart companies that figured this out early, and have quality copywriters in-house, or are already outsourcing.
But the majority of companies still haven’t made the transition from words as “filler” to words as sales tools.
And that’s where your opportunity now lies.
It’s a huge opportunity because you can approach companies with a pretty simple message:
“It’s the words that make the sale! If you would like to see your website convert more visitors into buyers, I can help you. I’m a professional online copywriter.”
That’s a message every online marketer wants to hear. They all have website, but few of them know how to convert visitors into cash.
And that’s what you can do for them.
NOTE: If you have yet to receive any professional-grade training in the craft of online copywriting, find out more about my program, Copywriting 2.0. Copywriting 2.0 is published by AWAI, and you can find their information and sales page for the program here…
About the author: Nick Usborne is an online writer, copywriter, author and coach. Read more…
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