Sometime last two weeks, I had Dallas and Jokem review Kopykart and Evan Promise (the websites). Dallas did mention that he considered the home page of the former quite wordy and Jokem said same of the latter. I told them I knew and I planned to optimize them later when revamping both sites.
The thing about website copywriting (and branding too) is that people tend to forget the “why” while focusing on the “what” or the rules that govern the industry. Personally, I like breaking rules (because no extraordinary brand actually got to stand out by keeping to the rules…in any industry you can think of), but I like to know the rules, understand why they were formed in the first place before I can find my way around it.
The truth is yeah, it’s the current trend or norm to be minimalistic while developing website copies. The “scantier” the copies, the better they perform especially using set website metrics like conversion rate, bounce rate, and pages/session etc.
But that is not a hard and fast rule because there is another truth which is weightier than the former – these rules are actually meant to be user-centric. That is, they’re all set with the search user or website visitor in mind, to provide an overall wholesome experience. Because this is weightier, it means you can compromise on the former if it serves the user better.
Why are websites with very little content on the home page preferred?? That’s the question you should ask first.
It’s because the attention span of the average website visitor is very low. And when the content on your site is heavy, your CTA tends to get lost within it. Which means you are very likely to lose the visitor who may want to patronize you but isn’t really interested in reading your long home page copy. So sites generally prefer to use one line microcopy on home pages and direct all the attention to the CTA buttons. Then they can add links to other pages where they’ll give the visitor long content to read if he or she wants to do so.
Yes, until you realise anyway that it’s not so great for building a brand (especially at the onset). You’re technically choosing between maxing out your conversions and growing your brand faster.
An existing brand need not explain what they do or try to push their brand message out there, the brand is already trusted. They only have to show testimonials from their top clients, a concise microcopy, and then the CTA. I once wrote a website for a CBD company, the home page didn’t even have up to 100 words.
But if you are a new company still working on your branding and without testimonials; you need space to sell yourself, shatter the reader’s objections, and finally convince him/her. (That does not mean you should write the whole world though). At this point, your priority is not really to max conversions, but to sell yourself. Then when you’ve successfully gained traction and grown your brand to an extent, you can revamp your website, go minimalistic, and shoot for maximum conversions.
… and that’s exactly why you should always go for a website copywriter who knows his onions and is also a brand strategist.