The Difference Between Web Copy and Web Content

If you have a website for your business, you’ve doubtless heard the terms ‘web copy’ and ‘web content’. But what the hell do they mean? And what’s the difference between the two?

Well, this is the internet, where everything is ambiguous and open to interpretation. Which theoretically means there’s no right answer. But I’m going to give you one anyway, because what the hell is the point of this blog post otherwise? Here’s how I see it (prep yourself for some biased but excellent information):

What is Web Copy?

Well, for starters, let’s talk about what copy is: copy is text used to sell. That’s what it often means these days, anyway, especially when we’re talking about website copy. So let’s talk about that.

Website copy is the core text that guides people through your website and tells them what they need to know. It’s what’s on your home page, your about page, your products and services pages, and all your website’s other main pages.

When someone lands on your site, you need to hook them in quickly to keep them around: you need to sell your brand to them.

Essentially, web copy is copywriting for the web. That means it could also apply to the text you see in sponsored posts. In Facebook ads. Email newsletters. Any text used to promote/sell something on the web is web copy. Ta-da!

What is Web Content?

‘Web content’ is often used to mean any writing found on your website. It could be pages of copy, blog posts, product descriptions, whatever. People use it as a generic catchall term.

While we’re on the subject, it can also be applied to other types of content, not just the written word, like videos, podcasts, etc. Which is probably why you’re confused about what it means.

However, I consider web content to be distinct from web copy, which, as we’ve discussed, is used to sell.

Web content, on the other hand, is used to market your business, rather than outright sell. Hence the term content marketing. The goal is not to shift product, but to get people invested in your brand… so that further down the line, they might buy from you.

You’d use web content to attract new eyes to your business. By creating informative, entertaining and helpful articles and blog posts (or videos, podcasts, etc.) relevant to your industry, you can attract new readers and, therefore, new customers.

Over time, your content can help people get to know, like and trust you – which is imperative if you want them to eventually buy from you.

Top notch web content is the sort of stuff people devour and share immediately across all their social networks. You never see a website’s about page go viral, do you? But blog posts? They get shared. And shared again. And then an influx of people storm your website and wreck your server. If you’re lucky. (Er. Sort of.)

By publishing quality, fresh posts to your blog regularly, you could see your website rising up the ranks of Google, too. Which is why your blog should be about relevant subjects and use keywords that people are likely to tap into their search bar.