How To Build A Website – Strategies For Your New Web-Based Business

Some new website owners spend so much time on color schemes, borders and online Feng Shui that they forget what’s most important: the words they’re using to communicate with visitors.  Here are three tips for getting the words right:

Don’t Assume Too Much Or Too Little Knowledge

First, figure out your target market.  Focus not only on what these Internet users want, but also on what they know.  You don’t want to talk over visitors’ heads.  You’ll lose them within a few sentences.   But you don’t want to talk down to them either.  In most cases, common sense will tell you what the average person in your target market knows about your product.  When in doubt, ask for feedback from others.  You can’t please everyone in this regard, but if you spend some time on it, you can draft language that speaks on the right level.

It’s Not About You

The concept of “audience” is a crucial element in all forms of writing.  Seasoned writers write for a specific audience, and if a joke or clever point doesn’t speak to that audience then it doesn’t make the cut.  Even if you think it’s the most insightful thought ever uttered, if it doesn’t resonate with your specific audience, it’s useless. 

This is even more true when it comes to website writing.  The web is broken down into millions and millions of audience-specific nuggets.  People find your site because it serves some specific purpose.  They don’t care about anything else.  They don’t care if you’re funny.  They don’t care if you’re clever.  They care about the goal they’re trying to accomplish.  Whatever helps them do what they want – that, for your customers, is the cleverest thing you could say.

Write For Your Visitors, Not The Search Engines

This is a point made in many discussions of SEO (i.e., “Search Engine Optimization”).  Because you probably don’t want to wade through a dozen geeky web treatises, I’ll make the point here in the simplest terms possible:

You probably know that you need to include certain keywords on your site so that Google users will find you when they search.  You may also know that Google ranks sites so that the “best” sites for a given keyword will pop up on top of the search results.  Nowadays, most experts agree that there’s no magic formula for how many instances of each keyword to include in your text.  You do need to know which relevant phrases people are searching for.  And you do need to include some of those phrases on your site.  But beyond that, your primary focus should be on the wants and needs of your visitors.  If your website and business are useful to others, you’ll eventually gain prominence on the Internet.