The other day I met a prospective client over coffee. We chatted about her must-do’s right now as she’s about to launch her business and plans to host a launch event.
Yeah, exciting launch! Yeah, business venture! Yeah, coffee!
After we chatted about her immediate needs, we got talking about how I could write some content for her website. Here’s how the convo went:
ME: Great, and then we’ll chat about web copy after this.
HER: (Pause). What does web copy mean?
When you work in an industry for so long, you start to assume your everyday lingo is also in everyone else’s terminology. But it ain’t always so.
It made me think about how overwhelming it can be when you’re launching a business. There’s so much to sort out before you open those doors. Never mind the fact that you’re also expected to be a digital marketing pro.
With that, I put together a short list of digital marketing lingo for anyone coming into the online marketing space, and is currently vomiting keywords into his or her garbage.
A List of Web Terms to get You Started in your Business
CMS: This stands for Content Management System. Think of it as a hub that holds all your digital information, such as a website.
WordPress: It is a CMS that many business owners use because they can log into the website and change the content themselves, rather than paying a web designer to do the work. There is a difference between WordPress.com and WordPress.org. Other website platforms include SquareSpace, Wix and Weebly (they sound like characters from the Seven Dwarfs).
SEO: Search Engine Optimization. This is how Google finds your website (or doesn’t). You want to integrate SEO onto your website so that when people are searching for your type of business, your website will be at the top of the Google Search results. Think of it like a spider searching through its web for food.
How do you implement SEO? You have good headlines and relevant keywords. So when someone is searching for “How to get your two-year-old to stop yelling at you” (looking for a friend), and you’ve written about that exact topic on your website, that webpage or blog post may come up in their search results.
Keywords: Keywords are the kinds of words you’ll want to insert in your blog posts/webpages when publishing them online. Again, think about the kinds of words people punch into the Google machine that’s related to your business. You want them to get to your website, so you’ll use those keywords. Think like your client and use those keywords. If you’re a hair stylist in Smiths Falls, you’d use keywords such as Smiths Falls Hairstylist, Smiths Falls hairdresser, Hairdresser in Smiths Falls, Lanark County hairstylist, etc.
Web Copy: This is essentially the content you’ll be posting to your website. Web copy is verrry different from your high school English class style of writing; rather, it’s a formulaic style that works to convert your website visitors into clients/buyers.
Lists: For two years, I silently wondered what the fudge people meant when they referred to ‘their list’. A list is your email list that you use to connect to your clients. Remember that time you signed up for the Gap Store and you now get three emails a day from them? That’s because you’re on their list.
People visiting your website can:
- insert their email addresses into a special form that gets automatically added to your email list.
- This list is hosted through a third-party company. Some list companies include MailChimp and AWeber.
- You try to build your list to consistently connect to your clients/potential clients. Lots of people do weekly outreach while others connect daily.
The good thing about a list is that it’s yours and no one can take it away from you (Whereas your Facebook and Instagram accounts are not your property).
Opt-In: An opt-in is the tempting offering you’ll give to someone when they visit your website so that you can collect their email address (and add them to your list!). Let’s go back to the Gap Store: they may offer an opt-in that includes a 15% discount off your next purchase if you give them your email address. That’s an opt-in.
These are just some of the many online words that you’ll likely come across as you set up your business’ website. There are so, so many more, but hopefully this gives you a sliver more confidence when showcasing your business to the online word.
P.S. I don’t really have that jumpsuit at home. It’s at the dry cleaner’s.
P.P.S. If you want to connect with me about working on your digital presence, then let’s chat!