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Five phrases you should never use on your website

There are some phrases you should never use on your website (or any of your marketing material for that matter), either because they’re meaningless, or because they’re jargon – or both.

Here are five that deserve a red pen …

We offer exceptional service

What does that mean to your customers? How will they experience your “exceptional service”? The statement would make more sense if you said something like: “We’ll deliver your pink widgets within 24 hours”. That’s something your customers can relate to and appreciate. Be specific, and show what level of service you’re offering in a way that can be measured.

 We’re a one-stop shop

Really? Could I have a coffee-to-go with that then? No-one’s a one-stop shop. You can’t be everything to everyone, so don’t pretend you are.

We’re the biggest/best/number 1

If you’re Everest, you can say with all certainty that you’re the highest mountain in the world. But be careful of making boasts that you can’t back up with facts and figures. If you can’t substantiate your claim, don’t make it. No-one will believe you.

Our core competency is …

What a ridiculous phrase! It’s one of those self-important terms that’s supposed to impress your customers. The word “competent” means “adequately qualified”. Adequate. Average. Mediocre. Just say what you do: “We sell pink widgets”. Your product offering isn’t going to sound more impressive when you call it your “core … umm … mediocrity”!

We think outside the box

This is another example of a hackneyed term that’s meaningless. And if you’re using it, you’re not really thinking at all. If you’re wanting to tell your customers about how innovative you are, then show them what is so different about your offering.  No-one’s going to think you’re inventive because you tell them that you “think outside the box”.

What tired old business phrases annoy you?