As a copywriter I read and write a lot of website content. And I have to say there’s an awful lot of websites out there that are just plain, dull and boring. I see the same bland, monotonous, copycat statements repeated across many websites in many different industries.
What I’m referring to is a style of website communication that’s sadly all too common, I call it “The Website Monologue Syndrome.”
It’s basically a very generic, staid and uninspiring piece of communication that doesn’t really convey anything other than the company is a little on the dull side. Nobody wants to do business with a company that comes across as bland and dreary.
If your website content is lacking in passion or enthusiasm, it could be that it suffers from “website monologue syndrome” and it could be harming your business more than you realize.
Content that just spews out information but doesn’t really offer any value or benefit to the customer will definitely drive people away.
Here’s what to look out for to avoid “The Website Monologue Syndrome” from sucking the life out of your online communications.
1. A stuffy and formal tone of voice.
Just doesn’t sound natural, and it’s not appealing for people to read.
2. Content that is entirely from the viewpoint of the business with constant reference to “we” and “our.”
This just makes the company appear arrogant, or superior and shows a lack of empathy with their customers.
3. Listing facts and features but no benefits.
All facts, features and specifications make for very dull reading. You need to explain to customers how, why or what else they will gain from buying “x, y, & z” features.
4. Content that never puts ‘you’ the customer in the picture.
If your content doesn’t include the customer in the story or picture, then they can’t see how or why they should buy or need your products or services.
5. Overusing words such as best; premier; high quality; affordable; free; cheap; reliable; great customer service, with no real proof or evidence.
Telling people how great you are, means you’re probably not. Leave it to your customers to spread the word, use real customer testimonials/social media as your proof.
6. Too much jargon, spelling and grammatical errors.
Spelling and grammar mistakes show a lack of care and attention to detail, it arouses suspicion in customers’ minds. Content that is heavy on jargon or industry talk makes your content difficult to read. It alienates your readers by making them work too hard to understand your message.
7. Broad and general content.
Means you don’t have a clearly defined target market. Generic content loses impact as it tries to be all things to all people.
8. Not having a specific point of difference.
Looking and sounding the same as the next person means you end up blending in with the rest of the “me too” crowd. Tap into your uniqueness and use it to stand out from the crowd.
9. An unimaginative headline such as “Welcome to… …”
Is a wasted opportunity to grab the attention of your audience and engage their interest.
10. Omitting a clear call to action.
Remind people why they landed on your website, what they need to do to fulfill your website’s objectives. Don’t leave them guessing or you leave yourself vulnerable to losing enquiries or sales.
Now that you know what to look for, you should be able to quickly revive any lifeless signs afflicting your website content and stop “website monologue syndrome” from sabotaging your sales.