How to Write Copy that Sells (+10 Landing Page & Homepage Examples)

November 11, 2022
Updated: Dec 03, 2022
How to Write Copy that Sells (+10 Landing Page & Homepage Examples)

Can you imagine 3X-ing your sales with just a few tweaks to your web copy? 

It might seem intimidating to change pages that are already generating revenue. Lucky for you, I have the perfect list of examples to help you optimize your homepage and landing page copy.

Whenever I find web copy that I find especially effective, I save it to my swipe file. I thought this holiday season presented the perfect opportunity to share some of the examples with you.

Let's start with the site's most important page – the homepage.

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Great copy doesn't happen by accident, and these examples will hopefully reveal the method behind the madness.

1. Be brief to create intrigue 

More often than not, homepage copy is long and cluttered. It’s usually something confusing like: “A Fully Integrated Cloud-Native Solution to Manage Kubernetes & Operating Systems at the Edge”...

Snore.

Canva’s copy is different. It eliminates clutter and creates intrigue, inspiring and engaging its customers. The title reads:

“What will you design today?”

Canva chooses to ask the reader a simple question, packed full of possibilities. Not some long-winded copy about the many things you could undoubtedly do with Canva, but merely five words that are sure to draw you in and invite you to explore a whole new world. 

Less is more. This means writing, editing, erasing, and repeating this process until your copy is enticing enough. Use words sparingly to create a sense of curiosity that invites the reader in. 

Try it now!

How many words can you chip off your homepage headline? Get to the core of what you need to say. Then, say it in a way that invites them to take concrete action.

Experiment with text shortening to get AI-powered shortened versions of your sentences. 

2. Write copy about the benefits, not the brand

Focus less on your brand and how much you love it, and more on your customers’ needs and benefits.

Benefits can be on the functional/rational scale (increase conversions, boost sales) or on the emotional/social one (reduce stress, feel your best). 

Warby Parker understands that its customers are busy and like to have options. Its copy brings two functional benefits together (having more frames to try on and shopping from home).

Try it now!

What is the number one benefit your brand promises its customers? Is it emotional, social, or rational? Customers will always respond better to headlines that focus on the real benefit they value.

As an example, you might assume that your jewelry brand has emotional appeal, but customer research may reveal that your customers are more likely to respond to a functional benefit, like “certified jewelry with a high resale value”. 

Pro tip: Read a few dozen reviews by satisfied customers to gain insight into whether emotional (makes me feel great), social (makes me look good), or rational benefits (easy purchase process, certification, resale) move their needle. Use these insights in your copy.

3. Change up the CTAs on your homepage

Can you imagine a physical shopfront with only a giant nameplate and no cool window displays to draw you in? A similar rule should apply to homepages.

Many websites don’t change the copy on their homepage unless they are doing a website refresh, which could take years! Even more businesses don’t view their homepage as a place for self-promotion.

Fashion brand BerryLook has adopted a different approach. Its current homepage is a powerful advertisement for its Black Friday bargains. 

Try it now!

Start experimenting with different homepage copy and offers, including seasonal ones. Measure how each change to your headline and offer impacts conversions or clicks. 

Connect homepage ads with time-bound offers to specially made landing pages (check out landing page copy tip #5) to drive conversions even higher.

4. Be specific and preempt questions 

Facts and figures help people process the benefit or outcome more easily than vague text. Make sure your copy clearly explains what they can expect to find and how it can benefit them. Use copy that helps your customers feel confident enough to make a buying decision. 

Healthy Snack Solutions offers healthy snack packages at wholesale prices, and it knows that’s a pretty unusual offer. To make sure the offer is as clear to a potential customer as possible, the company has added copy that works in tandem with the visuals.

Try it now!

Highlight any vague or generic copy on your homepage. Consider adding specific benefits, value, social proof, or even prices to it.

Instead of saying “Night lights trusted by hundreds of Bay Area moms,” tell the prospect why your brand is trusted.

For instance, “Over 75% of moms in the Bay Area trust Hailey’s baby-safe night lights in their nurseries.” 

Specificity drives credibility, which builds more trust, which drives more clicks. 

5. Write copy for an audience of one

If you try to appeal to everyone, you’ll end up appealing to no one. What kind of person does your homepage talk to? 

The copy on the ConvertKit website clearly identifies who it is talking to and says exactly what they need to hear. The company speaks directly to singers, and it follows up with a testimonial and benefits from a real singer.

This isn’t for all “creative people,” but specifically for singers, authors, podcasters, and coaches.

After scrolling, it gets even more specific:

Try it now!

You can make your homepage (or landing page) copy audience-specific by following these steps:

  • Choose the target audience you want to… well… target.
  • Do your research! Gather information, including facts, stats, and motivators about your audience.
  • Write copy that addresses their emotional, social, or functional needs and motivations.
  • Write it as if you were having a conversation. If you were riding in an elevator with a prospect and had two minutes to pitch your product, what would you say? What one benefit would you highlight? 

Pro tip: Tone matters. It’s not just what you say, but how you say it. 

Use Wordtune’s formal or casual tone feature to play with different tones of voice and make your copy even more relatable to your specific audience.

After covering copy examples for the site's main page, let's look at some highly effective landing page copy.

6. Offer a choice of CTA 

LMS Paradiso pops up a splash page after you’ve spent time browsing the site and before you are about to leave. It boldly gives you two CTAs or options for next steps. 

If you’re a parent, you’ll know this is a great strategy. When you offer two options, rather than posing a binary “yes/no” question, you increase the chance your child will pick one of the choices. For example, I never ask my kids if they want to eat. Instead, I ask if they want to eat before or after their bath.

Try it now!

Consider when and what you want your splash page to accomplish. Make the CTA irresistible by offering two options in the headline.

Some brands offer an opt-in and an opt-out button, where the latter actually helps highlight the benefit of opting-in. 

For instance, this Men’s Health splash page asks if you want to get stronger, faster, and healthier or pass (i.e., not get stronger and healthier).

7. Write copy that eliminates sign-up friction

No one likes filling out sign-up forms. 

Copy that is human, relatable, and focused on solving real problems will entice prospects to sign up. Furthermore, they must believe that signing up has real value for them.

This free workshop sign-up page for “no-code landing pages” illustrates a common marketing fear: the need to hire coders and developers to accomplish basic tasks.

The copy is non-technical, addresses the prospect’s fears upfront, and promises to help solve a very real and specific problem. 

As an example of a problematic sign-up page, this one for J.Crew offers plenty of value but misfires by being confusing. It addresses multiple needs (social: privileges, rational: free shipping, emotional: birthday gift), and it includes two CTAs (Join Now and Learn More). By simplifying and condensing the copy, this confusion can be avoided.

Try it now!

As you write landing pages for your various Black Friday offers, think about how you can bring your understanding of the prospect’s needs into the copy. 

Research and in-depth knowledge of the customer’s hopes and fears are crucial, not just to craft the offer, but also to create copy that will make the offer compelling. 

Identify the big customer need or pain point your offer addresses and write landing page copy to appeal to that emotion.

8. Don’t stop at the sign-up

The “thank you” page should be just as compelling as the landing page. By doing so, you emphasize the importance of what they just signed up for.

The Copy Cure’s webinar sign-up page, for instance, doesn’t stop at the sign-up. It adds a second screen with a CTA to add the webinar to the customer’s calendar, and it cleverly asks for a phone number as well. By disguising this as a benefit for the customer, the CTA becomes even more effective. 

This approach turns a free webinar into something that customers consider much more valuable.

This is the first part:

and here is the second:

Try it now!

Rather than writing extensive copy on one landing page, break it up into two: the sign-up page and the “thank you” page.

This not only increases the value of the entire effort for the customer, but also simplifies the data gathering process.

9. Write squeeze page copy that doesn’t choke prospects

The unfortunately named “squeeze pages” are those bullet point- and testimonial-filled pages that you can scroll endlessly. 

This squeeze page for a paid course from Robin Sharma includes credibility-building facts, urgency, and additional-value deal sweeteners. It uses an active and direct voice, addressing just one person.

Try it now!

Write squeeze page copy for one individual. Write in active voice, second person (“you”). Make it feel like a real conversation by speaking to the prospect, not at them. Tell a story, and make your customer the hero.

Keep the content skimmable. Squeeze page copy can be long and repetitive, but there is a reason for that. The right structure and bulleting make it easy for customers to find what they need. Keep your squeeze pages free of navigation tabs and hyperlinks to minimize distractions and keep them on the page for longer.

Keep the focus on outcomes. If you are getting people to sign up for a skill-building workshop, focus your copy on what life would be like when they can earn money from their skill (outcome), rather than the exams (process) or the certification (output). 

Use testimonials, quantifiable results, or before-and-after data and visuals to show them how life will change after the workshop.  

10. Write search-optimized copy for special events like Black Friday

Searches spike during special events. Black Friday, for example, is a time when everyone is shopping for their favorite deals.

Create landing page copy that’s search optimized to cover all the long-tail and niche keywords that your customers might search for.

It might be worthwhile to optimize for terms such as “Black Friday sneak peek” or “Black Friday luxury bag deals”, like Michael Kors do. This might help drive traffic from people in your niche looking for deals.

Try it now

Optimize existing website pages for sale-specific keywords.

Add teaser splash pages that entice prospects to sign up for Black Friday deals, and keep the excitement high by leveraging countdowns and weekly reveals.

P.S.
This article was co-written with Wordtune. Wordtune didn’t write the whole piece. Instead, it contributed ideas, suggested rephrasing alternatives, maintained consistency in tone, and of course - made the process much more fun for the writer.

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