Microcopy is a name for the small pieces of copy which are used around websites to provide guidance, either to explain a form field or reassure customers about checkout security.
This copy, perhaps a sentence or two of text, can really help smooth the customer’s journey through a retailer’s site, and remove some possible causes of abandonment.
Here are some examples of microcopy in action…
AO.com uses microcopy here to address common customer questions about delivery, it explains that the delivery team will contact them in advance with a delivery slot.
Microcopy can be as effective as design changes in improving conversions, or fixing points of friction on ecommerce sites.
Here, House of Fraser uses microcopy to explain the protocol for password entry. This avoids the risk that customers become frustrated when they choose the wrong password format.
Booking.com uses a lot of microcopy around its site, both to persuade and to reassure visitors.
It tells people that the booking is risk-free as they can cancel later on if they change their minds. The copy also highlights key selling points like the free breakfast, and uses urgency by showing how many bookings have been made.
Most retailers are using microcopy without even noticing it, but it can help to think about where it can be used on your site to good effect, to help create a smoother journey for your visitors.
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Graham Charlton is Editor in Chief at SaleCycle. He's been covering ecommerce and digital marketing for more than a decade, having previously written reports and articles for Econsultancy. ClickZ, Search Engine Watch and more.