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Which copywriting format works these days: long or short?

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Which copywriting format works these days: long or short?

Postby » Wed Sep 12, 2007 10:32 am

I am wondering which type of copy-writing format is more effective these days? The long or the short copy?

My idea is that the internet is already saturated with information from billions of websites and most buyers who have to check out a couple of websites from the top 10 of the search engine result may not have the time and patience to read long winded 100 paged website content.

I will like to hear from anyone and what is working for you.
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Postby JosephRatliff » Wed Sep 12, 2007 3:47 pm


Long, short, tall, wide, video, etc...

Whatever it takes to get the best response for a product or service online.

You have to test...

But the classic response is...long copy still wins in my tested opinion.
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Postby Lynn Terry » Thu Sep 13, 2007 12:34 pm

I agree - whatever it takes to give the information your potential buyer needs to make the buying decision. Nothing more, nothing less.
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Postby James Schramko » Sun Oct 28, 2007 1:28 am

another tester here.

Test long versus short. The theory is that long copy will get a more qualified buyer.

You need enough of a message to get the facts out there and cover the concerns but not put them to sleep.

Video can assist a sales page too.
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Postby Jim Guinn » Sun Oct 28, 2007 9:40 am

Like the age-old and never ending "chicken or egg" discussion, this question has, is and will be discussed with varying opinions and "proof" that one is better than the other.

Length is all depends on what you are selling, what information needs to be conveyed to the potential buyer and how well you presell.

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Long or Short Sales Copy?

Postby devandjen » Wed Nov 14, 2007 9:16 pm

My partner and I write sales copy for our clients from time to time and are just amazed that they always insist on long, long, long copy. I guess we are just in the minority, because we both tend to feel long-winded and empty, boring copy is annoying and a turn off. I think that a lot of copywriters know that long copy sells better (for whatever reason) and tend to just fill the space with fluff and repetition. I would prefer a short, to the point sales letter that sticks to the facts and doesn't try to OVER sell.
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Postby JosephRatliff » Wed Nov 14, 2007 10:53 pm


There really isn't a "long copy" vs "short copy" to debate...

It's "what copy" is needed to sell and get the best results. Period.

What combination of video, audio, text, graphics, is tested to prove the best results for the particular project.

And a good resource on testing?

Paul Hancox has an ebook called "Small Changes, Big Profits" that covers what in my opinion is the best testing methods available.
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Postby sherryhan » Thu Dec 06, 2007 7:02 pm

Whatever it takes to tell your potential customer everything about your product, leaving no questions unanswered. If it's long, ok. If it's short, don't add unnecessary junk just to make it longer.

In my opinion there's nothing wrong with long copy. They've always worked for me. It takes a different amount of information to convince each person. When I read long copy and I'm convinced enough half way through, I buy the product without reading the rest. I do have problems if the copy leaves questions unanswered. This is why it's good to add Buy buttons in the middle and bottom of your sales page for "impatient" customers like myself. Then for those who are not so easily convinced, they can read more.

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Postby Dave Origano » Wed Dec 12, 2007 7:03 am

My lists respond best with short-copy that goes directly to the point with benefits and the exact offer and pricing. But they've already been pre-sold on the offer thru extensive pre-launch processes.

With direct-mail I use long copy since I need to establish the whole offer from ground up. Thus I take the time and space I need to do that.

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Postby irishyoung » Wed Apr 30, 2008 10:32 pm

it doesn't matter how long or short it is as long as it is direct to the point and informative. users will stop reading your ad if at the start it didn't catches their attention and that they didn't see ahead what they need. So knowing what your customers want is a must. Keep in mind that your competitors is one click away.
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Postby caren9008 » Thu May 08, 2008 11:40 am

You should create effective copy that arouses response.
Use strong headlines that encourage people to read the text. Long words are difficult to read and fewer people understand their meaning. Instead of long words use simple words such as success instead of achievement.
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It's all about the sales cycle

Postby Bensettle » Mon May 19, 2008 12:19 pm

I am wondering which type of copy-writing format is more effective these days? The long or the short copy?

Hey Secret33,

It all depends on the sales cycle your market is in.

If, for example, you're selling ordinary nails to home builders -- which your market already knows what it is and what it does -- you need only toss in a price and some kind of offer.

If, on the other hand, you just created yet another new way to make money on the Internet -- and are competing with literally thousands of other similar products -- you will likely need a lot more copy to prove why your way is different, why it's better, who you are, what you've done, why they should believe you, who you've helped, etc.

Probably the best teaching you'll ever find on this subject is Eugene Schwartz's book, "Breakthrough Advertising". Gene breaks this whole process down into 5 categories and it makes an excellent guide to follow.

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Postby RyanHealy » Thu May 22, 2008 10:56 am

I've done some tests in which shorter copy won. Other times, longer copy
has won. But I've had to test to find out.

One of my best promotions ever was around 300 words. And it sold more than
1,500 puzzles in a couple weeks.
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Postby RayEdwards » Thu May 22, 2008 8:41 pm

All copy should be seven words long.
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Postby Sheridan Randolph » Sun May 25, 2008 2:52 pm

I second Ben's post. Schwartz is great for answering this, though I had to read it several times before I 'got it'.
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