Every process can as complex as we want to make it. And digital marketing is no exception to this. The purpose, its strategy, its promotion and processes are completely worth to concentrate and investing time in.
With too much detailing involved in marketing based complex processes, we often forget about the basics of the process, like primary rules that make content writing a success among its readers or target audience.
Though every talk lately concentrates on Content Marketing, but what builds its essence is the content that goes into it. Like in blogs, articles or ant informative written piece that we offer to the audience to enlighten their knowledge and information-need and convert them into loyal customers.
But what if they land onto the blog and bounce back or are turned off with the content presentation or creation?
The purpose simply fails!
To achieve the end goal, setting the basics right is a prerequisite. Here is a quick list of the primary rules to follow that make the content reader-friendly.
Focusing On The Reader
When writing content, your reader needs to be at the forefront of your mind. You need to make sure that what you are creating won’t be off-putting or intimidating to the reader when they first land on a page – an issue further compounded by the nature of mobile devices.
Here are a few rules that can be used to help make the content more reader-friendly.
1. Sub Headings
Sub headings are important for a number of reasons.
Sub headings break up the content on the page and prevent the reader from feeling like they’ve hit a ‘wall of text’ – something that is particularly off-putting on a mobile device.
They also help to guide the reader through the page. If they are on the page for something specific, then scanning the subheadings will help them find the section of the page most relevant to them.
Image Source: Slideshare
This can again help to prevent reader frustration, which in turn has a benefit for you. Pages perform better when users are able to get what they want as quickly as possible.
How often should you have sub headings? It depends – look for natural changes in topic in the copy. Purely from a signposting point of view, these are good places to have a sub heading.
To prevent ‘wall of text’, I’d recommend a sub heading every 4-5 paragraphs.
2. Keep Paragraphs Short
When it comes to writing for the web, a paragraph takes on a different shape when compared with writing for the page.
Generally, you want to keep paragraphs short. 4 lines is enough, you might be able to get away with 5 depending on the design and layout of your page. If you’re struggling to see where to break a paragraph, look for a change in topic or the start of a new point.
Again, this comes down to ‘wall of text’. What we’re trying to do is make the reader see the text as easy to digest, rather than as an intimidating slog to get through.
3. Bullet Lists Are Better
When it comes to content that intimidates users and puts them off, a long, chunky list is one of the main offenders. Thankfully, bullet points can save you from creating a list that scares away otherwise engaged readers.
So, why are bullet lists better? Well…
- They present each individual point clearly
- They’re easier to scan
- They avoid a chunky block of text
- They’re much more digestible for mobile users
Wherever possible, bulleting your lists will make your content far more user friendly.
Signs Of Success
By taking these relatively simple steps, you’ll be well on the way to making your content more user friendly – particularly for those readers on mobile devices.
But what kind of tangible benefits should you expect to see? Making your content more accessible to readers should result in the following improvements on your content pages:
- A reduction in bounce rate
- Increased time on page
- Increased click-throughs and onward journeys
Of course, there are other factors that could affect these metrics – how well structured and positioned your calls to action are will affect onward journeys, for example.
Going Beyond The Basics
Though it seems easy, but content creation itself is a complex process. Hence, making it crucial to follow and learn the primary rules of making content reader-friendly.
Always remember that if the basics aren’t right, then the strategy based on it can never be a success.
So what’s your take on content creation and its presentation that makes it reader-friendly? What rules do you follow? How they work for the business and if not, then why it didn’t?
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