Top tips for writing for the web
When reading online, we read differently than we would read a book. We don’t read every single word on a website. Instead, we skim sites looking for the particular information we need. When we find the information, we read it, and we move on often ignoring the rest of the site. If we can’t find what we are looking for, we move on to another site to find it.
Just as a reader will read a website differently than reading a book, we need to write web content differently too. Keep the following tips in mind when writing for your webpage.
- Be Conversational
Write as though you are talking with your clients – not at them.
- Get to the Point
We read material on the web slower than we read printed material, and readers want information quickly. So, help them out and get to the point.
- Break It Up
Lots of text can be overwhelming. It signals to readers that they are going to have to search for the information they want. Use headlines and sub headlines to break up text.
- Make It Stand Out
Use colored text and highlighting to call attention to important details. Making certain text stand out draws the eye to it and notifies the reader that this is important information.
- List It
Creating numbered lists or bullet points is another technique that can be used to break up text.
- Say It in Pictures
Use images. Readers will look at pictures and graphics before they read text, so add a relevant image to grab the attention of your readers.
- Think SEO (search engine optimization)
Determine keywords people will use when searching for your content. What words will they type into Google? Use these words in your content.
- Avoid Jargon
If you want your message to be clear avoid industry slang. While you know the meaning and your customers may know it, you have to assume potential customers don’t. Use simple explanations in your content.
- Include a Call to Action
Your clients have the information. Now What? Do you want them to sign up for your email list, subscribe to your newsletter or make a purchase? Make it easy for clients to take the next step.
Online readers tend to scan material for information. They are not going to read every word on your site, so use these techniques to ensure your readers get the key points they need when visiting your web page.