July 10, 2010

Images Dazzle, but Words Sell

Posted by 2Checkout

Karon Thackston

What a mess! I wanted to test conversions using an introductory video clip on the sales page for my copywriting course, so I went to a professional company to create it. When I got the video back, it looked great! The editing was professional, the flow was wonderful, the clarity and colors were exact. There was just one problem: you couldn’t hear a word I was saying.

I emailed the company to ask if they could tell me what the problem was. They couldn’t. “The volume was up to max when we did the final compilation,” was what I was told. “It can’t get any louder.”

That’s a real problem. Why? Because – while the images were super – the words were what mattered. Just watching a talking head at the top of the sales page wouldn’t do anybody any good unless they knew what was being said. The information – the persuasion – was in the words.

Graphics Heavy, but Copy Light

I find this happening a lot online. Site owners and marketing directors put all the weight of conversion on an image. Product pages are graphics heavy but copy light. Don’t get me wrong: images are wonderful. In fact, they add quite a lot to the page.

However, just looking at a photo of a laptop computer doesn’t come close to informing the customer of the full range of features and benefits this machine offers.

Does copy need to be long to be effective? No. A well-written, 60-word product description on an ecommerce site can effectively communicate what the reader needs to know to make a buying decision.(Optimal phrase: well-written.)

When setting up your online store, don’t skimp on the copy. You’ll end up like I did – with a page that’s nice to look at, but doesn’t accomplish a thing!

Want to learn how to write great SEO copy for your site? Check out Karon’s Step-by-Step Copywriting Course. Visit Karon’s copywriting blog to get her free ebook, Copywriting Makeovers.