Bad Website Content Is Damaging Your Website – Here’s Why.

Riley Barry

Did you know users only take 0.05 seconds (50 milliseconds) to form an opinion about your website? Talk about a snap judgement!

With such a brief window of opportunity, you’ve got to make sure everything on your site is in tip-top shape to make a great first impression on visitors.

But a successful website is more than just HD graphics and modern features. It thrives on captivating written content that draws visitors in and paints a clear picture of your business.

If your website’s written content is lacklustre, error-ridden, or confusing, you’re missing out on a golden opportunity to connect with your audience and convert visitors into customers.

Now, we’re not suggesting you need to whip out Pulitzer Prize-level writing skills. But there’s a huge difference between content that’s just ‘meh’ and content that truly engages.

In this journey, we’ll uncover exactly how poorly-written website content does more harm than good for your brand.

And if you feel your website’s copy isn’t up to scratch, there’s absolutely no need to worry! We’re here to help you turn things around and transform your website into a thriving hub of engagement and opportunity.

Let’s roll up those sleeves and get into it!

The negative effects of poorly-written website content

From harming customer trust to tarnishing your online presence, let’s unearth the hidden pitfalls of not getting your web content writing process quite right.

1. Bad first impression

Think of visiting a website for the first time like going on a first date. Just as you’d form an instant opinion about a date who shows up dishevelled, visitors judge a messy website with the same sharp eye.

When readers are greeted by confusing, error-strewn, or lifeless text, they’re likely to form a negative impression that’s hard to shake off. In other words, it’ll probably give them ‘the ick’.

2. Lack of trust 

On the web, trust is everything. But it doesn’t come easy. In fact, it’s built over time with consistent hard work and a keen eye for detail. 

But beware! This hard-earned trust is fragile. A simple slip-up, whether it’s a typo or an incorrect statistic, can send your credibility crashing down faster than you can say, ‘Oops.’ 

So, remember to dot your i’s, cross your t’s, and pay attention to every detail to build and maintain trust with your visitors!

3. Poor search engine visibility 

Search engines crave top-notch content that’s informative and relevant to customer search queries. If your website’s content doesn’t tickle their fancy, search engine giants like Google will be left less than impressed.

Poor-quality content could send your site tumbling down the search rankings, leaving it lost in the vast internet abyss. 

4. Low engagement 

Great content is a magnet for audience attention. It pulls people in, inviting them to stick around, soak up your content, and connect with your website.

But if your content doesn’t live up to its full potential, the opposite is true. Visitors tend to bounce quickly and not look back if your website is boring, lacks helpful information, or just isn’t what they’re looking for.

This shortens their time on your site and slashes their chances of further engagement or clicking that precious ‘learn more’ or ‘add to cart’ button.

5. Negative brand image

When your website’s content leaves much to be desired, it can cast a shadow over your entire brand.

A negative impression like this can escalate quickly. Your tarnished brand image can ripple out, harming customer loyalty, hindering your brand’s standing in the market, and ultimately hurting your sales and growth.

6. Bad user experience (UX)

Poorly-written website content can be the difference between a positive and a negative user experience.  If the language is unclear or confusing, it’s hard for people to understand what you’re trying to say. 

And long sentences or fancy words can just confuse them even more.

Also, without clear headings or sections of text, users can feel lost and frustrated. They might give up trying to find what they need and leave the site altogether.

7. Loss of global opportunities

Are you hoping your business can expand its reach to far and distant places? Unfortunately, poor website content can mean missed opportunities on a global scale. 

If the language of your content is too complex or filled with cultural references that not everyone understands, you risk alienating international visitors. They might struggle to grasp your message or feel the content isn’t relevant to them. 

This means you’re missing your chance to expand your brand’s reach and connect with a whole world of different markets.

8. Legal and compliance issues 

Getting facts wrong isn’t just embarrassing; it can land you in hot water legally. 

For businesses in tightly-regulated fields like finance or healthcare, out-of-date or incorrect information can quickly become a compliance nightmare. 

The simplest way to avoid legal fines or penalties is to get it right the first time. Keep your eyes peeled and your facts straight. This will keep you out of trouble and show your audience they can count on you to be accurate and trustworthy.

9. Damaged customer relationships

Winning a new customer is just the start. To turn them into loyal ones, your website’s text must continue to impress.

If not, it can hurt repeat business and spark negative chatter, harming your chances for long-term success. The goal is to nurture your customer relationships with reliable, worthwhile, and captivating content that keeps them coming back for more. 

After all, a happy customer is more than a one-time sale; they’re a potential advocate for your brand.

10. Increased customer support costs

If your content isn’t driving visitors away but still leaves them scratching their heads, they’ll likely turn to your customer support team for clarity.

This might seem harmless initially, but it’s like opening the floodgates to an avalanche of support requests. Your team or customer support employees will get swamped trying to clear up confusion that your website content could have avoided in the first place.

11. Missed advertising and partnership opportunities 

It’s time to start thinking of your written content as more than just a way to attract customers. It’s a doorway to exciting partnerships and advertising opportunities.

But here’s the kicker: if your content isn’t up to scratch, it could drive away potential partners and advertisers.

These folks are looking for professionalism and quality. If they don’t find it in your content, they’ll likely turn to someone else who meets their standards.

How to create well-written website content

Crafting amazing website content isn’t magic – it’s a blend of creativity and precision. 

You need engaging, informative content that resonates with your audience, attracts visitors, and builds a lasting connection with your brand.

Here’s exactly what you need to do: 

#1 Get to know your audience

Before writing, pause and put yourself in your audience’s shoes. What piques their interest? Take the time to understand their needs, preferences, and challenges. When you craft your content to mirror their experiences, you create something they can genuinely relate to.

Here are some key tips for getting to know your audience better: 

1. Create audience personas

Crafting audience personas isn’t as daunting as it sounds. It simply involves creating detailed profiles for your site’s different types of visitors.

Picture your audiences by jotting down their age range, jobs, hobbies, and how they typically surf the web. This approach helps you fine-tune your content to connect deeply with each unique group.

For example, you might zero in on a persona like ‘women aged 18-35 living in the US with a keen interest in fitness and health’.

2. Monitor social media trends

Keeping up with social media trends is a must. Pay attention to the topics and discussions buzzing in your social circles.

These real-life conversations provide valuable insights, allowing you to create content that resonates with what your audience is genuinely interested in.

3. Review customer feedback

Look at your customers’ comments and messages in reviews, emails, and during customer service chats. 

This feedback is incredibly valuable. It gives you a real-world peek into what your audience loves, what bothers them, and what they hope to find on your website.

4. Carry out a competitor analysis

Keep an eye on your competition with a competitor analysis. Think about how your competitors talk to your shared audience. What’s working for them, and where do they fall short? 

The goal here isn’t to mimic them but to learn. It’s about deciphering what resonates with your audience and then spinning it into something even better, infused with your own unique flair.

5. Focus on user testing and feedback

Run some user tests to get the lowdown directly from your audience. Ask them about your content, what clicks with them, and what might need some extra oomph.

It’s your chance to fine-tune your site based on real-life user experiences and make it a place that truly matters to your audience.

#2 Define your purpose 

Let purpose guide your content strategy. With a clear purpose, each piece of content aligns with your brand’s values, has a specific goal, and, most importantly, connects with your audience’s needs and desires.

Knowing the “why” behind your content transforms it from simple words into a powerful tool that fosters engagement and connection.

Here’s what to do: 

1. Set crystal-clear objectives

Vague goals create vague content. Before you start writing, solidify your objective. Set clear goals for what you want to achieve from your content. Do you want to inform, entertain, persuade, or inspire?

Let the answer to this question be your compass, guiding every word you write and ensuring your content stays true to its purpose, helping you reach your objectives. 

2. Align with your overall strategy

Great content goes beyond words on a page. It’s an extension of your brand’s vision. 

Take a fitness brand, for example. Every piece of written content, from articles to tweets, should pulsate with motivation, wisdom, and inspiration to help people achieve their fitness goals.

3. Craft a strong call-to-action (CTA)

Craft a CTA that aligns with your content’s purpose. A strong call to action (CTA) is crucial for getting website visitors to take the desired action.

  • Selling a product? A clear ‘Shop Now’ button is your friend.
  • Sharing knowledge? A ‘Learn More’ option entices your audience to delve deeper.
  • Building an email list? Offer a valuable freebie (like an ebook or cheat sheet) in exchange for signing up.

4. Measure success

You’ll need to look at specific results to know if your content works. Ask yourself: 

  • Is my website getting more visits? 
  • Are more people engaging with it?
  • Are my sales increasing?

The answers to these questions will show you what is and isn’t working in your content marketing strategy, allowing you to make any necessary adjustments.

#3 Carry out keyword research 

Keyword research is essential for making sure your website’s content stands out in the vast ocean of online information. You can carry out effective keyword research with the following tips: 

1. Use simple tools

Begin with tools like Google Keyword Planner or SEMrush. They’re great for finding the words people are typing into search engines when looking for what your business offers.

2. Understand search intent 

Figure out why people are searching for specific words. They might be looking to purchase, seeking information, or looking for a way to reach out to your business. Make sure your content is relevant and helpful for these broad search goals.

3. Target long-tail keywords

To improve your content’s visibility, add longer, more specific phrases called long-tail keywords. For example, rather than just using ‘running shoes’, consider a phrase like ‘best running shoes for marathon training’.

Although long-tail keywords may have lower search volumes than shorter, more general terms, they often lead to better conversion rates. This is because they directly address your audience’s specific needs or questions.

4. See what competitors use

See what keywords your competitors are ranking for. This can give you an idea of what’s working in your industry and help you identify gaps in your content strategy.

By investigating your competitors’ keyword rankings, you can gain valuable insights into their winning tactics and where they might fall short. With this knowledge, you can fine-tune your keyword targeting and craft a content strategy that stands out.

5. Use keywords naturally

Now that you’ve sorted your short and long-tail keywords, it’s time to put them to work in your content. Make sure they fit naturally into your headings, subheadings, meta descriptions, and all through your text. 

But remember, don’t cram too many keywords into your content. This is known as keyword stuffing, which can damage your position in search engine results pages.

#4 Make a content plan

Planning your content in advance gives your website a clear sense of direction and ensures its narrative makes sense. 

A well-planned content strategy can engage your audience, guide them through your site, and increase conversions. Here are some tips to help you get started with content planning: 

1. Identify key themes and topics

Pinpoint the main topics relevant to your audience and your brand. These themes will form the foundation of your content plan. For instance, if you’re a travel website, you might centre your content on destinations, travel tips, and cultural experiences.

2. Map out your content journey

Consider the path you want visitors to take through your website. Start with introductory information for newcomers and gradually delve deeper into specific topics. 

This journey should lead to a clear call to action like purchasing, signing up for a newsletter, or contacting you for more information.

3. Use a content calendar

Organise your content strategy with a calendar. Plan when to publish new articles, posts, or updates. This helps maintain a consistent posting schedule, which keeps your audience engaged.

4. Diversify your content types

Some people prefer reading in-depth articles, while others like quick, visual content. Mix different types of content—like blog posts, videos, infographics, and podcasts—to cater to your audience’s preferences. 

5. Align content with marketing goals

Ensure that each piece of content serves a purpose and aligns with your broader marketing goals. Whether driving traffic, generating leads, or building brand awareness, your content should contribute to these objectives.

6. Include evergreen and trending topics

Balance your content between evergreen topics that stay relevant over time and trending topics that are currently popular. This combination can help attract a steady flow of traffic.

7. Evaluate and reflect

Review your content’s performance regularly. What’s working well? What’s not? Use these insights to refine your future content plan.

#5 Focus on Search Engine Optimisation (SEO)

Making your website more visible and easier to find through search engines involves a few key steps, each important in its own right. Here are some key elements to consider: 

1. Engaging meta titles and descriptions

Craft catchy meta titles and descriptions for your web pages, whether it’s a home, contact, or landing page. Think of meta titles as headlines and meta descriptions as summaries. 

Users see them in search results related to your business. Don’t forget to incorporate relevant keywords here to grab attention and improve your search results. 

2. Descriptive alt text for images

Ever wonder how search engines identify your images? It’s with alt text!

In other words, it’s copy that attracts attention to your images and explains what they are to both search engine crawlers and users who rely on screen readers.

Alt text isn’t just about SEO—it’s about inclusivity. Clear alt text allows everyone to experience your content, regardless of their visual abilities.

Some tips for creating compelling alt text include:

  • Keep it concise and descriptive
  • Avoid overstuffing with keywords
  • Provide enough detail so someone can understand the image without needing to see it
  • Use natural language

3. Clear and relevant URLs

Descriptive and concise URLs help visitors understand your content before clicking. This benefits SEO and user experience, leading to more clicks and engagement. 

So, always make sure your URLs are descriptive and concise and accurately reflect your pages’ content.

4. Mobile-friendly copy 

Mobile-friendly web copy affects how engaged and satisfied users are on smaller screens. Since mobile users want information fast, creating text that meets this need is crucial.

Here are some tips for optimising your copy for mobile accessibility: 

  • Write copy that’s short and to the point 
  • Break up your text with clear headings to make it easy to read
  • Put the most important information at the beginning
  • Make sure your website loads quickly to keep users engaged
  • Use clear font styles and sizes for easy readability on small screens
  • Include clear calls to action to help users navigate your site

5. Strategic internal linking

Strategic internal linking is all about connecting the different pages on your website using hyperlinks.

The result? Easy navigation for your visitors, better website visibility, and higher authority in search engine rankings.

6. High-quality content

Focus on creating original, engaging, and valuable content for your audience. Quality content will likely be shared and linked to, boosting your site’s authority and search ranking.

The benefits of good website copywriting

When you create meaningful web content that packs a punch, you’ll be rewarded tenfold. Some of the most impressive benefits of good content include: 

1. Keeps visitors interested

Think of your website’s written content as a good story. Once you’ve got your audience’s attention, you want to keep them hooked until the end. Well-written content does this by describing your products or services in engaging and interesting ways, compelling your visitors to stick around and learn more.

2. Provides value

When you write web copy that addresses your target audience’s needs, questions, and pain points, you provide them with helpful and relevant information and insights. 

Whether it’s educational blog posts, informative guides, or helpful resources, valuable content keeps visitors coming back for more and positions your brand as a trusted resource in your industry.

3. Improves user experience

User experience (UX) is vital in website design and development. When you have a content writer who delivers clear, concise, and well-crafted content, it improves your UX, making it easy for visitors to find exactly what they’re after.

4. Boosts search engine visibility 

Search engines have a special place in their hearts for websites that provide valuable content to users. 

When you post informative, well-optimised content that your audience cares about, you improve your chances of ranking higher in search results. This makes it easier for potential customers to find you online, ultimately driving more traffic to your website.

5. Leads to conversions

Whether it’s purchasing a product, signing up for your newsletter, or reaching out to a member of your team – compelling web copy persuades visitors to take action. By using persuasive calls-to-action (CTAs) and messaging throughout each web page, you can guide visitors through the conversion funnel and turn them into loyal customers.

6. Shows your expertise

When you write content that shares valuable insights and shows off your industry knowledge, you position yourself as a trusted expert in your field. Most importantly, you’re not just making noise – you’re making a meaningful impact that’s hard to ignore.

7. Builds trust 

Trust is the foundation of any successful business relationship. Your website content strategy plays a big part in building that trust. 

When you share informative, accurate, and well-researched content, you show your expertise and position yourself as an authority in your field. This helps boost your credibility and makes visitors feel more confident doing business with your brand.

8. Tells your brand story 

Your website content shows off who your brand is and what you care about. When you write in a way that matches your brand’s vibe and speaks to your audience, it makes your brand look legit and reliable. This helps you stand out from the competition and leaves a positive lasting impression.

9. Encourages sharing

When you make content that’s worth sharing, it’ll reach more people through social media posts, emails, and other channels. If your content is valuable, inspiring, or simply entertaining, people are more likely to share it with their friends. The result? Better brand visibility and plenty of new visitors.

10. Drives long-term results

Unlike paid ads that stop working after a while, good website content is the gift that keeps on giving. Evergreen content stays relevant to your audience long after it’s published, bringing in traffic, engagement, and conversions for your website over time.

Common written content mistakes to avoid 

As we now know, writing awesome website content is a must for sparking visitor interest, building trust, and reaching your business goals. 

But there are some common content writing mistakes we see time and time again. We’ve shared these errors along with expert content writing tips to help you dodge them:

1. Using technical or jargon-heavy language

Mistake: Overloading content with jargon can confuse readers.

Tip: Use clear, simple language. If technical terms are necessary, provide brief explanations or a link to a page with more info.

2. Inconsistent tone and style

Mistake: Different tones across pages can weaken your brand.

Tip: Develop a style guide for consistent voice and tone across all platforms. Make sure all your content follows it.

3. Overloading with information

Mistake: Too much information at once can overwhelm readers.

Tip: Break content into chunks with clear headings and short paragraphs. Use visuals to support the text and add variety.

4. Neglecting your target audience

Mistake: Creating content without considering your audience can lead to disengagement.

Tip: Find out what your audience cares about. Create content that speaks to these issues.

5. Weak Calls-to-Action (CTAs)

Mistake: Vague CTAs can lead to low conversion rates.

Tip: Create clear, compelling CTAs with action-oriented language. Make them stand out visually on the page.

6. Outdated content

Mistake: Outdated content can hurt credibility and relevance.

Tip: Regularly review and update your content. Consider adding a blog or news section for publishing fresh content consistently. 

7. Ignoring user feedback

Mistake: Not listening to user feedback can lead to missed opportunities for improvement.

Tip: Encourage feedback through comments, surveys, and contact forms. Use this feedback to improve your content strategy accordingly.

The bottom line

Good website content is key for a solid digital marketing strategy. If your content isn’t up to scratch, it can hurt your website in many ways. For example, it can tarnish your brand image and reduce search engine visibility, making you miss out on global opportunities, and potentially leading to legal troubles.

Fortunately, there’s a clear path to improvement that’s easily achievable. By truly knowing your audience, developing detailed personas, staying current with social media trends, and following the other tips in this blog, you can craft content that not only captivates and informs but also perfectly reflects your brand’s voice and objectives.

The perks of quality content are huge: it gets people hooked, boosts your rankings on search engines, builds trust with your audience, amps up your brand, drives conversions, and keeps customers coming back for more.

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At Content Goodies, we’re excited to introduce our top-notch Copywriting Accelerator Pack – the ultimate kit for levelling up your website content creation game.

This isn’t just about creating impressive content; it’s about crafting your web copy to flow seamlessly.

Get your hands on the same copywriting templates that we’ve used to improve over 400 websites. These templates help you blend captivating, engaging content with a layout that’s built for getting more clicks.

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