Adapting print copy for the web – edited

It is universally acknowledged: web surfers don’t read, they scan. Enticing headings, look-at-me keywords and compelling links are the secret to keeping the web surfer’s attention. Then, if you’re very lucky, they may even read on.

So how do you get your readers to visit, stay … and buy?

Chunking web copy

A “chunk” of text, enough to fill a screen, is the basic unit of web writing. That’s 100 words or less. Shorter is better. Way better. So start with what you’ve got, then cut it by half. So if your original text was 500 words, get it down to 250. And break it into lots of short paragraphs.

Get results

Your job is to supply information that’s:

  • Enticing
  • Easy to understand
  • Easy to navigate
  • Gets results

See the last point. That’s right, the whole purpose is to convince readers to act: to buy the product, subscribe to the newsletter, join the club.

Just keep it simple and compelling: easy navigation, useful information, and easy action will make any site worth visiting and revisiting.