In Part 1 of this series, we discovered that explaining the value your products offer is only one part of the copywriting process. Creating a visual image is another. While Wholesalers USA knew their target customers better than most companies do, they needed help with two areas: optimizing their copy for the search engines and incorporating visual imagery.

The Rewrite

Since Wholesalers USA had extensive information about its customers, assessing the target audience was a quick process. We were able to move quickly to step two: the selection of keyphrases. Again, Wholesalers USA had done their homework.

Checking a variety of sources, they developed a selection of keyphrases they thought would work well for their home page. In addition, they reviewed their on-site searches for additional terms users frequently queried.

As I began to write, I kept these terms in mind and created ways to use them so they would flow naturally within the text. I also made a point to incorporate the "creative terms" mentioned in Part 1 and improve the feeling of trust for the visitor.

Keeping quality as a primary focus, I rephrased and repositioned the headline previously located in the center of the top banner area. Rather than:

"Bringing You Quality at Wholesale Prices - Always the Most Value for Your Money"

We used:

"Always the Highest Quality at the Lowest Prices"

This was inserted as a bold headline before the opening paragraph. The reworked headline flowed better and gave a more direct message. The following replaced the headline in the center banner area:

"Gorgeous Glass Mosaic Tiles and Glass Gems Direct from the Wholesaler"

Keyphrases found here helped contribute to the overall optimization of the page.

The copy began with a play on an old saying. It delivered a brief explanation of why the company's tiles and gems were so inexpensive and how quality was retained, then worked its way to a mention of a popular television show to boost trust and credibility. Although they had the privilege of providing tiles, stones and more for an episode of Extreme Makeover: Home Edition, Wholesalers USA mentioned this only on internal pages. Adding this to the home page copy (and providing a link for the details) allowed visitors to immediately see how different Wholesalers USA was from other companies.

To extend the copy and provide additional opportunities to entice visitors, very brief descriptions of each category represented on the home page were written. This also allowed the search engines to better assess the subject and relevance of the page. (Currently the descriptions are listed at the bottom of the home page until the programmer is able to move them underneath each graphic.) You can see the current home page copy here (PDF).

The Results

Mark from Wholesalers USA explains the results best. "Before the rewrite we didn't have any organic traffic for the supplemental keywords. The only traffic we had with these words were with PPC advertising. For our two main key phrases. I believe we were around page 5 on Google as of the update this past January. Previously we were found around page 35 for one phrase and the other could not be found at all.

"The biggest impact we have noticed is the dramatic increase in organic traffic (about a 50% increase) and in the number of conversions we are receiving from the organic phrases targeted in the makeover. A quick look. this afternoon shows where the phrases ranked in the search engines: [typically from #1 to #10].

"The rewrite has had a better effect than we expected. Almost immediately (within a few days) we started seeing traffic based on the new keywords and since then we see many of these key phrases continuing to move up in rankings.

"Although there are still many visitors who don't purchase on their first visit, we do see that most of our visitors are adding us to their favorites. This typically results in a sale at a later time as our log files show a relatively high conversion rate for these visitors (direct traffic)."

Good deal, Mark! That's what it's all about!

Discuss this article in the Small Business Ideas forum.

April 20, 2007

Karon Thackston is owner of Marketing Words, Inc. a full-service copywriting company specializing in search engine copywriting. She is also publisher of the long-standing free ezine, Business Essentials. Karon is author and publisher of the popular Step-by-Step Copywriting Course, an e-course designed to teach sound and highly-effective copywriting techniques - including search engine copywriting techniques. With over 20 years of copywriting experience, Karon has contributed to the search engine and sales success of companies large and small including Gortons Seafood, Third Sphere Hosting and more.

Search Engine Guide > Karon Thackston > Copywriting Makeover: Value vs. Vision - Part 2 of 2