Quality websites, flip book fibbers, crappy copywriting and more…

Time for a few more copywriting and marketing related snippets…

Crappy copywriting guide

First, an email I got last week about a downloadable copywriting guide. Would you trust information about quality content from someone who writes like this? I wouldn’t touch it with a bargepole.

“Introducing my copywriting course! I am mainly writing to you to tell you that because of this acquisition, my guild will no longer be available for download. However, I would like to let those who could benefit from my guide have one last chance at downloading it. Thus, I’m offering you a 50% discount code, which you can personally use to download the guide. Alternatively, you are welcome to offer it to your readers as a way of enhancing the value you provide them. The original guide is available below; use the discount code to get 50% off.”

Flip book fibbers

I update my marketing ebook every month, creating a fresh flip book each time. So far, so good, until the tool I use decided not to play ball after the creators redesigned it. Unable to wait, I looked for a good alternative, something I could use for free just this once while my usual tool’s bugs were fixed. And what a palaver it turned out to be.
I have only one thing to say to the flip book people who claim their tool is free then demand payment before letting users download the resulting file: disappointing and annoying potential customers is rubbish marketing. I mean, really… get your act together.

What is a quality website?

It’s all very well banging on about creating quality websites to maximise the chance of achieving good natural search results rankings. But what, exactly, does ‘quality’ mean in a website context? I thought it’d be useful to jot down a list of attributes that make a site the best it can be.
33 essentials for brilliant quality websites

  1. a domain name that accurately describes the business
  2. sensible, reader-friendly, short URLs, not great long strings of gobbledegook
  3. beautiful design with consistent styling
  4. a blog on the same url, not separate
  5. neat, logical blog categories and subcategories wherever appropriate, and the right number and type of tags
  6. unique, relevant, engaging, relevant content
  7. content that takes key terms into account and maps them properly to each page…
  8. … and takes on-site SEO best practice seriously
  9. a clear focus
  10. accurate spelling and grammar
  11. no jargon or business speak – make everything plain language
  12. great meta data
  13. fast loading speed across all browsers
  14. full contact and legal details included somewhere prominent
  15. top quality images at the smallest possible file size, named correctly with alt attributes in place
  16. a flat structure, so people are never more than a couple of clicks away from the information they need
  17. simple, intuitive navigation
  18. a variety of payment options – as many as you can offer, to suit every visitor’s preferences
  19. no broken links or 404 errors
  20. no duplicate or copied content
  21. minimal adverts on any one page
  22. a better overall user experience than competing websites
  23. disabled accessibility – not a requirement, but the law! Stuff like transcripts of video scripts and easy-to-see colour contrast
  24. the chance to speak to a human being if visitors need or want to
  25. named individuals included, with photos wherever it’s appropriate
  26. social media sharing and following buttons
  27. real-life case studies or customer feedback
  28. clean, W3 compliant code, free of junk
  29. links from and to trusted,high authority websites
  30. a clear, plain privacy policy
  31. plain language T&C
  32. regular updates to keep things fresh and accurate
  33. a site that answers every possible question visitors might want answers to

As search engine algorithms become even more picky and sensitive, it becomes even more important to check every available quality box. Tick these off and you’re more or less there. Well bloody done!

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