Technical Writing Tips: The 80/20 Rule

by Bradley Nice, Content Manager at

Has it ever happened to you that you came across a nice user manual that was failing to serve its purpose? It might’ve had tons of topics, all of them properly described and illustrated with screenshots and/or gif’s but nonetheless it lacked something.

That thing happened because technical writers tried their best to create full and comprehensible documentation but they failed to follow 80/20 rule.

A Quick Intro Into The 80/20 Rule

The 80/20 rule is also known as the Pareto principle. It is named after Italian economist Vilfredo Pareto, who noted that approximately 80% of the land in Italy was owned by 20% of the population or that about 20% of the peapods in his garden contained 80% of the peas. So the principle states that

For many events, roughly 80% of the effects come from 20% of the causes.

Since then this law had been applied in many areas such as business, science, software, sports. And technical writing is no exception.

To learn more how to use 80/20 rule when creating technical documentation, proceed here:

Technical Writing Tips: The 80/20 Rule

Have a nice day!

Bradley Nice,
Content Manager at — best online documentation tool for SaaS vendors