In this blog post, I am going to share some useful information that should help you to create informative, engaging content for your online reader. For those of you who write content for both online and offline publication, it’s important to remember that the two mediums are very different. When we search for information online, we normally do so when on the move. This means the most engaging content is provided by websites that understand the importance of accessible, informative content.
Engage your Audience Immediately:
Give the reader the information they’re searching for immediately. There’s no need for extensive intro paragraphs, background information or procrastination. If you have promised your reader an answer to a question, provide that information immediately. You can be assured that your reader will appreciate this approach and will return to your site when they next need expert advice or guidance.
Keep your Articles Short:
In general, we can assume that the reader is either on the move, searching for quick information or has a short amount of time to spend reading online. When we sit down to read offline, whether that’s a book, newspaper or magazine, we have already committed to dedicating some considerable time to the task. Online readers tend to hop from site to site, building upon their original search by clicking links for further information. Keep non-topical, non-political and non-opinion pieces under 500 words and build your audience by providing quick, easy to understand information.
Easy to Scan Information:
Use bullet points, short paragraphs and infographics to lead your reader through from the beginning to the end of your article. Articles that are easier to scan for information tend to get shared more on social media and reach a larger audience.
Identify the Reader and use their Voice:
Identify the demographic of your reader and tailor your articles to suit their voice. It’s vitally important that you never speak down to your reader, preach to them or alienate them in any way. Use a conversational tone that sets you on the same level as your reader and simply converse and provide them with the information they require.
Use Bullet Points and Lists:
By using bullet points and lists, we can provide easy to read information in a way that is accessible for people on the move. Articles that contain lists, tips, advice and answers will attract more traffic. Consider articles that focus on ‘Top Ten Ways to….’, ‘5 Steps to a Perfect…’, ‘How too…’.
Author Note: Joanne is a Digital Media lecturer at Griffith College and specialises in blogging, SEO and writing for the web. As a freelance writer and SEO consultant, she provides a range of copywriting and online marketing services that will greatly improve your online presence. You can contact Joanne by filling out the form below or by emailing firstname.lastname@example.org.