“When your story is ready for rewrite, cut it to the bone. Get rid of every ounce of excess fat. This is going to hurt; revising a story down to the bare essentials is always a little like murdering children, but it must be done.”
Writers need to be very critical of their work. There are different types of rules for different writing styles. When it comes to writing blog posts, winning approval of the audience is very important. To achieve that, your audience must meet these parameters-
- Your audience should read your complete write-up.
- Your write-up should be easy to read and understand.
- It should add value to your reader’s mind.
This is because when a reader is reading your article, you have their complete attention. Gaining quality attention is one of the main objectives of blogging. This is why certain things must be kept in mind while practising this style of writing.
Importance of Readability
If a reader has to take a lot of effort to read a write-up, then they may abandon the write-up altogether. This results in an increased bounce rate.
Bounce rate – The percentage of people who abandon the write-up before reading it completely.
A higher bounce rate results in
- lesser conversions
- Adverse Effect on Search Engine Results Page (SERP) rankings
- Lower engagement
To avoid all these adverse effects, some tips must be followed to make your content more and more readable. Easier the content to read higher the engagement ratio.
Use Short Sentences
In order to convey your ideas efficiently, you must keep your sentences shorter. The human brain is programmed to read between full stops. In one instance, an average human being reads only one sentence. Hence to optimize a blog post for readability, the sentences must be short.
Advantages of short sentences-
- Easier to understand
- Less strain on the brain
- Faster reading speed
Long Sentence– Erik went to buy groceries, on the way he met Derek and they both went to have ice cream at Uncle Ben’s.
Short Sentences– Erik went to buy groceries. On the way, he met Derek. They both went to have ice-cream at Uncle Ben’s.
There is a difference in reading both these examples. One may argue that they are both the same, but when there are difficult words in a sentence, the situation gets worse.
It is, however, okay to use longer sentences in the middle of the article. But they should be avoided at the beginning. As whatever a reader reads at the beginning of an article, builds momentum in their mind. This momentum drives the reader until the end of the article.
Use Active voice
Use active voice as much as possible. Passive voice is difficult to understand. We shall take an example for the same.
Passive– The flowers were plucked by the gardener.
Active– The gardener plucked the flowers.
Passive– At dinner, six slices of bread were eaten by Harry.
Active– Harry ate six slices of bread at dinner.
When the sentences in passive voice are longer, the difficulty is even higher. Difficulty while reading is a big turn-off. Hence, refrain from using passive voice, and put more emphasis on active voice.
However, in order to give more emphasis to your sentences, you may use passive voice, but that too in a certain limit. Make sure you don’t overuse them.
Longer paragraphs are visibly unattractive. If there is only text to read, longer paragraphs look tiresome. Shorter the paragraphs, the more attractive and smoother to read they are.
Give subheadings to your paragraphs that are up to 300 words long. This way your readers will be on the same side as you. Also, it becomes easier to understand as the reader remembers and can look back to the sub-headings once they get confused what you have written about.
How to write engaging content?
In order to make readers glued to your write-ups from the beginning to the end, your write-up must be engaging. To do that, your write-up must be extremely informative and rich in information. It should add value to the mind of your readers.
To add value to your text you can follow these tips-
- Make your text conversate with the reader.
- Use easy to understand language.
- Use as many examples as possible.
- Do not include unnecessary and irrelevant information in your text.
- Give references.
- Ask questions.
Making your article engaging is very important in order to make the reader glued to it. You must pay attention to making the language used easy to understand.
How to write easily understandable content
In order to write easily understandable content, you should follow these tips-
1. Use short words that are easier to read
More the number of syllables in a word, the harder it is to read. Do not use a 6 syllable word if you can use a 3 syllable one. Also, you should keep in mind that not everyone has got the same vocabulary as you. So try to use words that are commonly understood.
2. Write longer forms for abbreviations
While using abbreviations, try introducing their longer forms to your audience first. Once you do that, you can use them in their short forms. Do this even when you are sure that your reader knows the full form.
3. Spare the jargons
There are some profession-specific words that are not known by the general audience.
Unless your audience is going to be people specific to your profession, avoid using these terms altogether. Use their commonly known counterparts instead.
4. Use easily readable fonts
There are practically uncountable fonts out there. That does not mean you should use any of them. Use the font which suits your niche.
A business blog must have fonts like ‘Cambria’, ‘Calibri’, ‘Times New Roman’, etc. which appear more sophisticated. If your blog is casual, it is okay to experiment with fonts.
If you have any questions about writing better, please let us know in the comments. Also, please share any useful tip we may have missed here, we would love to learn too!