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Apparently, and don’t take my word on this, the internet is a big place (where this ‘place’ exists is another debate entirely).
There’s lots on offer; loads of sites all covering similar topics, pictures, videos, online shopping and so on, and so on, ad infinitum. To be honest, I haven’t got much further than YouTube and Amazon, but, according to some reliable sources, I’m just scratching the surface.
This dramatic wealth of choice is causing many internet users, when browsing, to suffer from what I’ll tentatively dub ‘grass is always greener’ syndrome, for want of a greater intellect.
Apparently, and this is straight from the BBC, ‘most online viewers spend less than 60 seconds at an average site.’ Now for me, as an online copywriter, this is slightly hurtful. Don’t they love my engaging, jargon-rich, wordy copy?
The answer is no...
When your average surfer/browser clicks into a site from Google, Yahoo, MSN or any of those other search engine guys, they’re looking for specifics.
They’re looking for (assuming they’ve been injured in a public place) a little reassurance that the company they’re looking at can handle their personal injury claim efficiently, and they’re looking for a phone number (and maybe how much they could stand to get, but we generally don’t like to admit that).
Sites need to be sticky, they need to attract and hold attention, they need to be (in general) quick and to the point – at least to begin with. Sure, we can be flowery and poetic after the fact, after we’ve grabbed them, held them, got them to pick up the phone; we can give them all the information they want.
But first, we must keep the sentences short, to the point, snappy.
If you’ve lost interest and clicked off to another page, then you’re not reading this. But if you’re still reading, then great, my first exercise in this style of writing has paid dividends.
The bigger, the better, the more distracting the internet becomes, the harder it is going to be to keep potential clients’ attention.
One way to combat this is good SEO, the other is good copy.