Coin is all about simplicity. The yet-to-be shipped product aims to streamline your life — and your wallet — by combining all your credit, debit, gift, and loyalty cards into one slim, swipeable card.

The startup applies the same ethos to its content, offering potential customers a trimmed-down, streamlined web experience. And the approach resonates with consumers, investors, and the media. Coin wooed investments from Google, Square, Y Combinator, and other tech companies, and the startup met its preorder sales goal of $50,000 in just 40 minutes.

In its quest to become the one card that rules them all, Coin employs a number of content best practices. Let’s take a look.

Website Best Practices in Action

Be concise and to the point.

There’s actually very little content throughout Coin’s site. What content exists aims to answer all the questions a potential customer might ask, and nothing more. No fluff. No pushy marketing.

“At Coin we know there is plenty to worry about, too much clutter and not enough time,” the About page states. What applies to the product applies to the product content as well.

Too often, organizations create FAQs as dumping grounds that users must wade through to find what they need. Coin, however, uses the question-and-answer format to its best advantage—to break up unfamiliar, technical information into manageable bites and present it from the vantage point of the potential customer. Click the questions, and the answers — all of which are concise, a few lines at most, and straightforward, with no jargon or sales-pitch fluff — slide in smoothly below and disappear again with another click.

Coin Q&A
Coin uses concise questions and answers.

Use repetition and elements of surprise.

Throughout the FAQs, the questions repeatedly refer to “my Coin.” For example, “How do I get my Coin?” and “Will my Coin work outside the U.S.?” Referring to the product from the customers’ perspective makes it feel more personal and relevant.

But the repetition embeds another goal as well: becoming part of the customers’ language. The content reinforces the phrase in users’ minds, with the aim of entering the lexicon and perhaps becoming a common reference, like using “Google” as a verb.

Also, Coin sprinkles in some surprises among the security, compatibility, and durability questions such as:

Coin Easter EggCoin Easter Egg

Such Easter Eggs not only make your readers smile but they also keep them engaged with content that otherwise reads a bit dry.

Employ effective video and visual content.

The first thing you see on onlycoin.com isn’t text — it’s a video. In just one minute and 46 seconds, that video illustrates exactly how the product works. How much text would it take to explain all that? How many people would read it? Would it work as effectively as the video?

Slick visual illustrations accompany the video to demonstrate the card’s advantages and encourage the user to keep moving down the page. As you scroll down, four different cards come together at the speed of your scroll to combine into one Coin card. Keep scrolling, and Coin slides down with you and swipes through a card machine. Further down, Coin falls away from its paired phone, which then displays a text message asking whether you’ve left Coin behind.Coin Text Message

On many sites, sales and marketing copy or technical specifications would accompany such illustrations and erode their visual impact. Here, the only text is three headers — Simple, Easy, and Secure — with snappy one-line subheads for each.Coin Subhead

Takeaways

Coin’s content offers abundant insights about paring down words and using voice, visuals, and added value to get its message across. Think your content could benefit from such techniques? Here are some questions to consider.

Is your content succinct and to the point?

Or does it contain fluff and extra information that drowns out your key messages? Step back and examine if all that content really works for people, or if it acts as a wall of words built over time as one department or another requests additions. If the content doesn’t work, axe it. Even with effective key messages, you may face an opportunity to cull back.

Are you using video and visuals where appropriate?

Often, photos, illustrations, or videos convey more than words, especially in the hunt-and-scan environment of the web. Consider where visuals or audio could better help your content goals. If you’re overly word-savvy and less visual-savvy, reach out to other departments or outside your company to get ideas about how visuals or audio could benefit your content. Incorporating such techniques doesn’t necessarily require a design overhaul or expensive video production. Even a simple slideshow may offer effective visuals.

Do you use doses of personality or humor?

A distinct voice helps people relate to your content, your company, and your product by prompting emotional reactions. Flashes of humor or personality make your content feel more human and less like static words on a screen. The right voice and tone also create trust and rapport between you and your customers.


To wrap up, let’s pull out a few clichés—there’s a reason they exist. Words can speak volumes, yes. But less is often more, so focus on your essential message. A picture can be worth a thousand words, so take advantage of that power. And of course, actions speak louder than words, so consider what you offer your users above and beyond what you’re trying to sell.

 

The Author

Sally Taylor is an associate writer with Content Science Review. You can contact Sally at Content Science.

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