How do I start writing web content
Do you regularly write blog articles and wonder what they have to look like in order to be read? Sometimes you are unsure how exactly you have to or should write web texts? You don't know to what extent communication on the web differs from communication in the office, business and everyday life? First of all: There is no magic formula for this. But there are a few tips and tricks that will greatly improve your chances of being read. This is exactly what this article is about.
Anyone who runs a website with a blog has probably wondered how he or she can improve the texts. Communication on the web is incredibly fast and fleeting, and the competition is huge. How do you manage to create articles that attract attention and that are read? To do this, you first have to ask yourself how exactly web content is consumed. How do we move on the net? And how do we read?
How do we read online?
Anyone looking for information on the Internet does not want a great arc of tension. He wants to know at first glance whether it is worth reading the text. Stricter rules apply on the web, because it is not read here, but rather scanned. On average, a user gets a picture of the respective page after 10 seconds and is either hooked or not. For good texts this means: Formulations have to be right! A quick orientation is the basic requirement for the reader not to leave a page immediately.
Most users now read on smartphones, tablets and laptops. Around 70% of Internet users use their smartphones to read articles. On the one hand, this means that responsive design (a design that adapts to the size of the screen) is mandatory for websites. On the other hand, content must be easy and quick to consume. Especially on small displays, we don't want to have to scroll back and forth to get the information we are looking for.
Why you should think vertically
Users skim texts and search for keywords. They do not proceed horizontally, but vertically. That said, for the most part, they stay on the left and only tear off to the right every now and then. So there is a kind of F-scheme. The timelines of the social networks still support this reading behavior, because here too you scroll through the mass of content from top to bottom. We also have to make it clear that an incredible amount of information is pouring into the user on Facebook and Co. In order not to drown in this flood of articles, we only scan the content briefly and quickly decide whether it is worth reading or scrolling further.
Attract attention with pictures
So, in order to keep the reader engaged, you need to make sure that they pay attention and stay alert. If we think of social networks, the first important point we get stuck with is an expressive image. So take a little time to choose the best image for your post. Which emotions should the picture trigger in the reader? What motive do you need for this? Set an attractive visual stimulus that makes you want to click and read the post.
Writing web texts: structure of the text
If you realize that texts on the Internet are mainly scanned, you will also know how to write web texts. You should place important terms in the left margin - the most important of course at the beginning of the text. So you really have to make an effort with the first few sentences - from the entire text, from paragraphs and of course from headings. Because exactly these places are the points at which users stumble and get stuck while scanning.
And if you take a few basic journalistic rules to heart when setting up, you can safely guide your readers through your topic. Why journalism? Because it makes sense. News editors need to get to the point very quickly and very clearly. You need to succinctly communicate what it is about. And so should you in your articles.
The upside down news pyramid
Do not worry. You shouldn't write messages. It's about building your articles in a way that readers will stick with them. William Faulkner said:
Write each sentence in a way that makes you curious about the next one.
But not only the language is important, but also that you structure your text sensibly. Because of our reading habits, it's smart to write articles that don't have a long intro. On the contrary: it makes sense that the information density is high at the beginning of the text and gradually decreases. Don't try to bind the reader by putting the important information at the end of the article. There is more room for a résumé or a summary of the important points. At the beginning comes the essential information.
The W questions
- What is the theme?
- What problems are covered here?
- How can your article solve the problems?
- How exactly does it work and what does the reader have to do for it?
- How long does it take?
- What results can you get?
If you manage to answer all of these questions in the first paragraph, you've already won. Because now your readers know what to expect. You also know what it's about and what you won't find here. Only then do you gradually bring more information. So the question is: what is your message actually? What is the main message of your text?
Present your topic in a logical and clearly structured way. Then the chance is much higher that readers will stick with it. In this way you create interest and ensure that no one looks disappointed for better sources because of a missing red thread. Make sure your readers keep getting held up while they scan.
Writing web texts: eyecatchers for the reader
Portioning the information so that readers keep reading is not the only means of catching readers scanning text. There are other elements to look out for.
- Write attractive, relevant subheadings
- In between, make short summaries, e.g. in list form
- Highlight important terms in the text (but don't overdo it, otherwise it will be confusing again)
- Use specific emotionalising terms - but always make sure that it fits the topic, you and your target group
With these simple tips for building web texts, you can improve your texts immediately. It's easy and quick. Plan exactly what you want to say in advance and stick to a logical and clear structure. Writing web texts primarily has to do with whether you manage to interest and then keep your readers interested in a topic.
No readers? It's not always the content!
Your reach is low, especially at the beginning, the content is only distributed slowly and there is probably also little reaction to the articles. But that's not necessarily because of the quality or the fact that nobody cares - it's more because hardly anyone knows how good your content is. Later, when you have built up an appropriate expert status and a steady readership, you automatically get more feedback and interaction. Simply because the users know you and appreciate your contributions.
So in the beginning it is important to write regularly and to spread the content as well as possible. And then you have to stick with it, because good content remains good content. The more your site grows and the more searches direct you to you, the larger your readership becomes.
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