Stop making these mistakes with your company’s website
I’ve seen a ton of science company websites over the last 18 months. And many of them suffer from the same problems:
1. They haven’t been updated in ages.
2. The copy is hard to read
3. Page after page of confusing content.
I’ve been working with a data science company over the past month to overhaul their website copy. And I’ve learned a few lessons along the way. So I thought I’d share some useful ideas you can implement to get your company’s website up to scratch.
Here’s a list of things to keep in mind.
Woe #1: Confusing Website Copy
For goodness sake, clean up the text on your website. Yes, this sounds obvious, and yet it’s something I see time and time again.
If you read the issue on simplifying your writing, you know how I feel about cluttered and awkward copy. Anybody with a technical background is guilty of this, myself included. The good news is this also means it’s relatively easy to stand out. As the old adage goes: “in the land of the blind, the one-eyed man is king”.
Simplifying and clarifying your copy starts with getting rid of useless words. If you’re interested in a great writing course (general writing, not copywriting) that helps you do this,take a look at Shani Raja’s course on Udemy.
Which brings us to…
Woe #2: Buzzwords and Business/Corporate Jargon
This is an extension of point 1 above on simplifying your writing. But my data science client used so much jargon on their original website, I thought it was important to include this as a separate point.
You need to avoid buzzwords, like “cutting edge”, “innovative”, “pushing the boundaries”, and “next-generation”. I don’t care how advanced your technology is, this kind of writing has no place in your website copy. Most readers will ignore these words anyway, and they don’t mean anything useful to your prospects.
Instead, get straight to the point and tell your readers exactly what you want them to know.
And since we’re talking about science marketing, you should also avoid technical/scientific jargon. Save that stuff for your academic papers.
Woe #3: Treating your website like a brochure
Treat your website like a direct response vehicle, not a brochure.
What does this mean?
It means your website is not somewhere you send your potential buyers just to get more information. You need them to do something once they’re on the site.
Anybody who comes to your website and leaves without giving you their contact details, or without doing something that moves them closer to a sale, is a wasted opportunity.
Woe #4: Not spelling out and packaging your “next step”
Don’t just say, “contact us to schedule a demo” or “download our free white paper”, or call us on (insert number).
This is like saying “contact us for a free consultation”. A “free consultation” holds no meaning in today’s cluttered marketplace. So many companies offer their own version of a “free consultation”, and everyone knows it almost always leads to a sales pitch. There’s no attraction here.
You need to spell out exactly how your prospect will benefit from your white paper, demo, call, etc. Tell them why them might want to contact you, how they’ll benefit, exactly what they’ll get, and the process they’ll be taken through.
My data science client started out with just “Contact us now for a free data read”, but we’re trying to build a complete service page around this offer. This will tell their potential buyers exactly what they’ll get from this data read.
Finally, make sure there’s a CTA on every page. This includes primary and secondary “next steps”. Secondary next steps are for those scientific buyers who aren’t ready to contact you, schedule a demo, call you on the phone, or any other primary CTA. Secondary CTAs can include registering for your newsletter, or downloading a white paper.
Woe #5: Not having a dedicated resources page that brings people back
Yep, I’ve talked about this one before too. Having a dedicated resources page – somewhere your prospects can return to and get new, helpful information – is critical for nurturing potential buyers, and establishing credibility and authority.
This page is where you can upload your white papers, case studies, blogs, tutorials, webinars, and videos. My data science client doesn’t have any of these yet. But they have a dedicated resource page in the works, and plan on adding to it regularly.
Much of this is common sense, and not difficult to do. Your website is the one of the most important parts of your marketing for attracting scientific buyers. So you need to make sure it’s working for you.
Until next time,