Adventures in Writing

10 Quick Tips for Writing Great Web Content

Tim King
Tim King
Aug 19, 2018 · 3 min read

Writing content for the web is very different than writing a business paper, technical document or essay. Getting it right can take time and effort, but can make all the difference. It can often be the dividing line between deeply engaging with an individual or causing them to become disinterested in your information.

Below are a few tips to help you shape your content to better engage and inform, while still conveying your key message.

Understand how people read on the web

On the web, people don’t read word for word. They skim content, trying to get a quick impression of what it’s about. They scan for the bits they are interested in and ignore the rest unless highly engaged.

You need to understand how people read on the web, then write content in a style that makes it easy for them.

Know your audience

Embrace user-centric content writing.

Write Content that is Easy to Skim & Scan

  • Limit each paragraph to one key concept
  • Use meaningful headings
  • Use bullet points and numbered lists
  • Include summaries or overviews

Keep Your Wording Short & Simple

Provide easy ways for non-experts to find out what your acronyms
and difficult expressions mean.

Give your users links to simple background information, so that the most casual visitor can work out what you are talking about.

Put Your Most Important Information First

Once they understand what you do, they might want to know some important details. And then, maybe they’d like to know some background information.

Write in Common Language

Always use words that people will effortlessly understand. You don’t need bombastic and fanciful words to impress people. You’ll impress people when you use simple words to get a complicated idea across.

Make Your Copy Easy to Read

  • Use short sentences — twelve words on average
  • Skip unnecessary words
  • Avoid jargon and overly technical terms
  • Avoid the passive tense
  • Avoid needless repetition
  • Address your web visitors directly. Use the words you and your
  • Shorten your text

Test then Refine Your Content

Test it on people to learn what works and what causes difficulties. Test your content on different audience groups with different levels of knowledge.Test web page performance in all common browsers.

Test, refine, test, refine, test …

You get the idea.

Build Trust

  • Include only content which conforms to the purpose
  • Protect privacy and respect copyright
  • Keep your content up to date
  • Publish your contact details. Provide people with a sense of knowing who is behind the content
  • Spell-check your content
  • Invite people to report errors, then fix them

Make People Act Without Saying “Click Here”

A great way to do this is to add links to the relevant words and phrases within your content.

This way the link remains contextually relevant,and you avoid the notorious “Click Here”.

About the author:

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Tim King

Written by

Tim King

Creative | Thought Leader | Futurist |

The Startup

Get smarter at building your thing. Follow to join The Startup’s +8 million monthly readers & +793K followers.

Tim King

Written by

Tim King

Creative | Thought Leader | Futurist |

The Startup

Get smarter at building your thing. Follow to join The Startup’s +8 million monthly readers & +793K followers.

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