As someone that works with photographers and female creatives on the regular to create website copy (AKA “word magic”), I have a front row seat to a lot of website copy mistakes.
But before I get to sharing those, let’s chat for a minute about “word magic.”
Copy that is “word magic” is personality-packed and unique to YOU as a business owner. I know you probably hear that a lot, but as often as that type of copy is preached and teached, it’s also the thing that I see so many business owners missing.
And I understand why this happens…
As a business owner, sometimes just completing the task is better than perfecting it. When you started your business, maybe you thought, “I just need to get a ‘good enough’ website up and running, so that people can book me,” so you settled for a website that presents basic information on how to work with you, added a contact form, and called it “good enough.”
Something is better than nothing, right?! YES…but not forever.
There comes a time when taking a step back is the very thing you need to move forward, and this is certainly true when it comes to your website, and the copy on your website specifically.
There are tons of people out there offering a similar service to yours, so the word magic that you deploy is often what gets someone to choose YOU over someone else.
So, back to those website mistakes I mentioned…
It was honestly hard for me to boil it down to just five (and we’re skipping over the glaring errors here in favor of truly moving the needle on leveling up your messaging).
Here are the top 5 mistakes I see a lot of creatives making AND how to fix them:
5 Website Copy Mistakes You Might Be Making
1. Few (and Generic) Words with LOTS of Photos
I work with a lot of photographers and other creatives in similar industries, and this is probably the number one mistake that I see. To me, it likely stems from the belief that “My work will sell for me!”
And while displaying your work in the form of your portfolio can absolutely support someone in making a purchasing decision, it’s likely not the *only* aspect of your website they’re looking at.
Here’s the hard truth: most photographers are good at what they do. Each one can take a beautiful photo, add their own special twist, and present it in an appealing way. But what sets you apart? Your STORY. Your WORDS!
Your work alone isn’t your difference maker. Your work combined with your WORDS is!
The key, however, is not to settle for generic words or phrases that everyone uses. Instead, dig into who your ideal client really is.
What words do they regularly use? What do they value in working with a business? What feeling do you want your brand to evoke? What are their pain points and desires, and how can you speak to these emotions?
When your copy is written specifically like this, that’s when your uniqueness starts to shine, and you can draw in more of the right people!
2. No FAQs Section
When people are booking a service, such as photography, they typically have a list of questions in their head. The best service providers anticipate these questions and answer them without the client ever having to actually ask.
Your website can serve them in this way by having an FAQs section that leaves them thinking, “Wow, they knew exactly what I was going to ask!”
Some people tend to shy away from an FAQs section because they think that certain answers will turn people away, but the truth is that this section actually gives you a chance to sell and directly address potential objections that someone might have.
For example, you should expect your potential clients to be curious about your rates. Holding this information back because of the fear that someone won’t book with you because it’s out of their budget is a missed opportunity!
With an FAQ section, you have the chance to first and foremost provide the information, such as a starting price for that offer or package, and then build the value around that.
Instead of just saying, “Starting at $3,000,” you can say, “This package starts at $3,000 and this includes XYZ.”
The magic is in the “XYZ,” and YOU get to let your full-service client experience (and your intuitive way of anticipating their questions!) shine through your words. ✨
3. Not Naming Your Location, Area, or Niche
I know that each of these things might sound obvious as need-to-know information, particularly if you’re serving clients in-person, but these elements are often forgotten when writing your website copy.
Just like people want to know your prices, they also want to know where you’re located, what additional areas (if any) that you serve, AND what your niche is. I call this the Positioning Statement because it literally communicates your position in the market!
For example, if you’re a photographer that’s located in southern California, but you willingly travel to Arizona and Nevada for your clients, make sure that is clearly identified on your website! Without doing this, you’re taking the chance on someone skipping over you because they think you don’t serve their location.
This same idea applies when it comes to your niche. It can be clear that you do photography, but what TYPE of photography?!
A new mom looking for someone to snap newborn photos of her precious baby wants to find the photographer in her area that is skilled in that, not the one that is top rated for engagements and weddings. And if she can’t clearly identify who you serve, she probably won’t hire you.
You can help that new mom and LOTS of other potential clients avoid confusion by being CLEAR about who you specifically serve and where you serve them.
4. Missing Calls to Action (CTAs) on Each Page
Again, this may seem like a fairly obvious website element, yet it’s a common mistake – it’s important to include CTAs on every page of your website.
Now, I know that might sound like a bit of an overkill, but when you really think about the actual purpose of a CTA, it’s simply to guide someone into their next action.
By including a CTA on every page of your entire website, you’re removing the barrier for your reader by not making them think or wonder what to do next; instead, you’re TELLING them what action you’d like them to take.
Sometimes, all this means is including a “Learn More” button that drives them to your “About” page. On your “Services” page, perhaps you ask them to take a greater action, like “Book a Call” or “Secure Your Spot.”
Either way, the whole point is to guide them through your customer journey in a way that truly serves them!
5. Making Your “About” Page All About YOU, Not THEM.
Wanna know the counterintuitive truth about your “About” page? It’s not just about YOU!
I’m all for you hyping yourself up, but your “About” page isn’t necessarily the spot for this kind of energy.
Truth time: Your potential clients don’t just want to get to know you so they can be your bestie. They want to get to know you so they can see if there are any glimpses of themselves in YOU and YOUR business.
It’s about RELATING to your potential client. Instead, use your “About” page to present who you are, what you do, and who you serve, but in a way that keeps the reader (AKA your potential client) top of mind and creates a connection with them, so that they really want to choose YOU!
I’m going to tell you like it is, friend, because I care: your potential client doesn’t necessarily care where you went to college or what your favorite coffee order is. They DO care why you’re passionate about your business and what it ultimately means for them.
Let that information be what takes center stage on your “About” page. If it makes sense to weave the other details in some way (like a Favorite Things roundup), by all means go for it. But don’t treat it like your autobiography – that’s a major turn-off. 🙅🏻♀️
Psst: Want to level up your “About” page in an hour? Click here to access my FREE “About” Page Guide, and you’re just three steps away from a fresh page that puts your client first.
When you address these five areas on your website and make sure they’re optimized, that’s when you can create great impact! That’s what I want for YOU, friend.
If your website copy feels like a looming to-do that you just can’t quite master, I’m here for you – click here to connect, and let’s work together to create your very own word magic in your business!