Phew. Curiosity has led to exhaustion.
But, my aim with this post isn’t to cast judgement on fellow copywriters – merely to offer an insight into:
- The words copywriters use to sell themselves on their homepages
- Where UK freelance copywriters are based
- What info they choose to share on the homepage (e.g. Twitter links, testimonials etc.)
- The gender split of UK copywriters
And a few other interesting stats.
How was the data gathered?
Copywriter sites were collated from Google, Freeindex, Dmoz and Twitter. Agencies (of more than a few people) were generally omitted.
The word “copywriter” was the defining search term. Results are a mix of advertising, direct marketing and general copywriters. Apologies if your site isn’t included – it may have slipped through the net! (N.B. Blogs with no static homepage were also left off the list.)
Let’s look at the total word counts…
Word counts ranged from the “fits on the back of a matchbox” to “barely fits on the side of a house”. (Navigation, copyright and T&C words weren’t included.) Here’s how it breaks down:
Seems like a fair average. Around 300 words should be enough for most copywriters to sell themselves. Some sites included a huge range of services. Many direct marketers opted for the classic long sales letter style (hence the highest count of over 4K words).
What information was shared on the homepage?
Predictably, blogs, client names and testimonials were a popular option. In fact, many of the sites I found easily via Google had blogs – backing up the accepted wisdom that blogging = good SEO.
Obviously, testimonial quotes and client names help establish credibility straight away (with a dash of social proof). Many of those sites that didn’t have quotes/clients on the homepage provided easy links to that info.
SEO copywriting was one of the most referenced secondary services/benefits (and sometimes the main focus of the site). Most DM and advertising copywriters didn’t mention it (what with the connotation of keyword-stilted language and all!)
Where do freelance copywriters live?
So, London’s drowning in the buggers. But note the concentration of copywriters in and around creative cities like Brighton, Bristol, Edinburgh, Leeds and Manchester. Looks to me like there are a few places severely under-represented by word pedlars. (Where are all the Northern Ireland freelance copywriters?)
(16 sites had indeterminate gender/location.)
The most popular words on a copywriter’s homepage
(All common English words removed.)
Copywriter, copywriting and copy were the most-used words (closely followed by business and marketing). No surprises there.
Common words removed except personal pronouns (I, you, we etc.):
As all good copywriters know, business communications should be about the reader, not about the writer. Hence the prevalence of “you”.
That’s not to say that We and I didn’t make rather prominent appearances. As a side point, a lot of freelancers (including myself) struggle with the question of me or us – am I an I or am I a we?
How about with copywriting, copy and copywriter removed?
Lots of practical copywriting words here:
And finally…the most common descriptive words copywriters use for themselves
So there we go. A glimpse into the world of the copywriter homepage. What do you make of these stats? If people are interested, I might look more in detail at popular calls to action, and perhaps even page title tags in a future post.
As you can probably gather, this post took hours and hours to put together! Please retweet, share or link (particularly if you’re one of the sites listed) and add a comment below. Thanks!