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How to write website content that attracts searchengines and readers

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How to write website content that attracts searchengines and readers

Post by LeahG on Fri 28 May - 11:46


How to write articles that attract readers by Leah


People often ask me in email and via my blogs for tips on writing articles for the Internet, so I’ve written a brief ‘how to write articles for the Internet guide’ here to
refer to.

Everyone that does business on the Internet can benefit from understanding
‘how to write articles for the Internet’

and in the first instance

‘how people read articles on the Internet’

Internet users read differently when surfing the Internet than they might when reading a newspaper, magazine, book, leaflet etc.

Knowing how users read on the Internet is thus very important in ensuring that your content is read.
Internet readers skim read looking for keywords and phrases that lead them to the juicy tit-bit they are looking for. Helping to direct them to that information before they click away to another site is thus very important.

Meanwhile, if you need them to read ALL your information, for your own ends you need to write in a way that reduces the skimming.

A few good rules of thumb include:

Having a summary of page content at the top of the page in bullet list form.
Some sites link directly to that paragraph for quick location by the reader. This is very helpful!
Having a summary of your main services and benefits on every page.
This is important as a reader might find your site not via the main page but via one of the other pages. If they don’t know via that page what you do, they might not stick around long enough to find out.

Basics of writing for the Internet

* Short paragraphs 3-4 lines max
* Bullet point lists (breaks up blocks of text – allows easy access to info)
* Bold important words that the user might find of interest
* Headings for paragraphs
* Try to write as if speaking to the reader
* Keep content concise
* Do not be verbose, not every reader has English as a first language and everyone is not educated to degree level.
* If you have space, leave a line between each bullet point for extra visibility.
* Avoid white on a coloured background – it requires more ‘effort’ to read. Some cool sites favour white on black. Jury is out on how effective that is. My opinion is not as effective as black on white.
* Size 12 -14 font is preferable to small font. Again it’s easier to read.
* Don’t clutter your page with distractions unless you want the user to stop reading and view that distraction. Ie moving banners, popups etc.
* Music isn’t a good one as people have different music tastes. It could be an instant turn off.
* Flash intros can be enough to send people who want fast access to content to click away rather than waiting while the page loads.
* Ariel font size 12 is the most readabale according to this study.


There is a lot more to learn about how to write articles for the Internet
Here is a really great resource which details the research carried out into how people read on the Internet as well as great tips on how to write for the Internet.

http://www.useit.com/papers/webwriting/


Netwriting Masters Course
Free course 'How to write for the Internet
http://netwriting.sitesell.com/info35.html


Words Sell ...but only if you know how to capture your audience, hold them and then convert them into buying customers. You can hire a copywriter to write your content or you can save yourself hundreds (thousands) by learning how to write your own website and sales content.

This course is free,a simple 49 page pdf doc.
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LeahG
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Re: How to write website content that attracts searchengines and readers

Post by Simon Lake on Fri 28 May - 17:20

Nice one Leah. Thanks for this.
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