Does Your Web Copy Sound Sleazy?

What does ‘sleazy web copy’ mean to you?

The car lots, door-to-door salesmen, beauty gurus pulling you aside with their makeup bags. You’ve seen them in the movies. It’s an age-old marketer trope that owns its realities in our web copy.

As a copywriter, you probably like to pride yourself on being empathetic to the reader. You understand what makes good and bad copywriting, and you’re raring to go.

But I hate to break it to you. We, as creators of such content, can become our own used car salesmen if we aren’t careful.

Words are powerful, and how we use, place, and craft them can house their own tone that readers pick up on.

I’m not telling you that you’re sketchy in your writing motives. Sometimes we just don’t notice until we’re editing!

So what counts as sleazy web copy?


Part of copywriting is the ability to get your reader to complete a specific action. From subscribe to buy, you’ve got just as much of a stake as the reader does in what comes next.

But the call to action isn’t the first thing you place on the page, and the whole of your copy shouldn’t be geared towards talking about the reader making the click.

You have to build up to earn the click. You do this by providing a great hook, valuable information, testimonials, empathizing with the reader’s frustrations, etc.

Don’t literally tell the reader throughout the whole page to click buy. Let the reader make the decision for themselves- and if you’ve written a great foundation- they’ll take the route in your favor!

Lack of Research

Readers aren’t stupid. They can see when you’re grabbing at straws, being generic, or trying not to look clueless.

You don’t have to be a mastermind in whatever niche you’re writing copy for, but a little bit of knowledge goes a long way.

Take the topic you’re writing about and delve deep into it. Even if you’re experienced in the niche and have written similar pieces, it’s always good to give yourself a brush over for extra confidence in the subject at hand. Plus, it will shine in your writing.


I’ve come across sales pages that were all over the place. Though most sales pages can be long and complex, these ones were ineffective.

High traffic, zero to no conversion.

No matter how long or complex your web copy has to be, make sure that you keep everything organized the best you can.

Maintain readability and guidance for your reader to keep them floating along smoothly. Presentability may be the key to setting yourself apart.

Jumping To Conclusions

Jabbing at pain points with your reader is extremely important to creating good copy. This drills into their head a reminder about the frustrations they’re experiencing, and eventually how you’re the one who’s got the light at the end of the tunnel.

However, this ties back into researching your audience.

Let’s say you’re writing an article for a joint paint solution.

You suppose the largest part of the market is seniors. Whether it is or isn’t, your copy would’ve been more effective if you had looked into the product and its background. The large majority of the audience for this medication were actually younger people who struggled with joint pain in the office from sitting too much.

End result- you lost an armload of potential customers because of your assumptions. Don’t assume your audience or their pain points.

Take the time to get the facts straight.


Don’t stress too much about how you come off in your copy. Simply put in the effort to create quality, and the rest will follow.

My final tip for you is to shift your voice to that of the brand/company/person you’re writing for. They usually have a great sense of their audience, and nailing their style and voice will drastically help you keep on track.

No creepy makeup guru personas for you.


If you’d like to connect further, follow me on Twitter.

Thank you for reading!

1 thought on “Does Your Web Copy Sound Sleazy?

  1. Pingback: 3 Call To Action Traits That Actually Work · Abigail Pollock

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *