Website copywriting services – what to look for when getting a quote

Hiring a copywriter for the first time can be confusing and even daunting.
Two ladies shaking hands on website copywriting services

In fact, this may be the first time you’ve even looked into it! Well, it’s not surprising then that you’re unsure about where to start, what to look for, the process involved or how to sort the good from the bad. As a website copywriter myself and someone who has hired writers before, here’s what to look for when getting a quote for website copywriting services!

Experience and qualifications

It’s important your copywriter has some significant writing experience under their belt so you can be confident in their abilities. Don’t be afraid to ask what their qualifications are and for some recent examples of their work. It’s completely justifiable and I personally love it when potential clients ask, as I know they’re committed to their project and their business!

Decent availability

You probably have a timeframe of when you would like your website live, and the design and development is dependent on your copy getting completed on time. When you make an enquiry, ask the copywriter about their availability for website copywriting services and the timeframe. Keep in mind though that a decent copywriter will also be in demand, so may not be able to start your project immediately.

A formal contract

A contract protects the both of you and demonstrates that the copywriter runs a tight ship. It will also outline the agreed deliverables and most importantly, what’s not included, to ensure smooth sailing. Make sure you check if the copywriter charges extra for research, meetings and tighter than agreed deadlines!

SEO Skills

Not familiar with Search Engine Optimisation? SEO uses keywords that will help your website rank higher in a google and improve your website traffic. If getting found on google and finding new customers is one of your goals, your website copywriter should be knowledgeable about SEO! I’d run a mile if they don’t provide keyword research and strategy in their quote. Make sure they also provide Title Tags and Meta Descriptions for each website page. These are bits of copy that help google understand the content on a page.

Communication

An open line of communication makes sure that misunderstandings are quickly rectified. When speaking with the copywriter get a sense for how well they communicate and follow up with you before hiring them. A good website copywriter should respond in a timely manner and have an efficient, and clear process. If they can’t communicate well with you, how will they communicate effectively with your audience?

Discovery questionnaire

Of course, the process of looking for a copywriter involves you asking questions. But the most important questions are the ones the copywriter asks you! They should have a well thought out discovery questionnaire for digging deep and really getting to know you, your offering and what really makes you different. If a website copywriter writes your copy without knowing much about you, you’re in for a cookie-cutter experience!

Their website copy

Finally, when getting a quote the easiest way to double check the quality of a copywriter is to look at their own website copy and how they present themselves. Afterall, it should be their best piece of work! Their website should impress you and convince you that the writer can write!

With hundreds of copywriters out there, all that choice can make it really difficult to decide who to work with and what you should be looking for when you ask for a quote. But website copywriting isn’t something you can afford to leave to an amateur. Here’s exactly what to look for when getting a quote:

Are they charging by the word or the project? Put the phone down immediately if they are charging by the word as it often leads to quantity over quality.

How many rounds of revisions are included? You should receive a minimum of two rounds.

Do they include research and project discovery? Good copywriters are part writers and part sleuth. They should ask a lot of questions and include a thorough project discovery process in their quote.

What is their timeframe? A project timeframe will give you an indication of completion time and keep the project on track. Every project is different, however a 5 page website shouldn’t take more than 3 – 4 weeks to complete.  

What are their payment terms? Most copywriters will ask for a project deposit to secure time in their writing calendar. This is a good thing as it means they value their time and are probably in demand!  

Based in rural Queensland on a sheep and cattle property, I combine website design and copywriting, with SEO best practice to help small businesses across regional and rural Australia grow.

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