10 Tips For Writing Web-Friendly Articles
Writing articles for the internet poses unique challenges that print articles don't face. There are special tricks you can use to adapt your writing style to suit internet readers.
You need to adapt your writing style to fit the medium. Web writing poses different challenges than writing for print media:
=> When readers are looking at content on the web, they have so much information before them that you need to work to catch and keep their attention.
=> Readers also have more opportunities to click away from your article. Most are looking for specific information, and if they don't find it at a glance, they can easily click to see a different article.
=> And technically speaking, it is not that easy to read off of a computer screen.
With this in mind, here are 10 tips for writing web-friendly articles:
1 - Create a title that is short and to the point. Your readers will be scanning long lists of article titles, so your article title needs to catch their attention immediately. Avoid long titles and clever puns or metaphors. Your article title should tell exactly what your article is about.
2 - Get to the point quickly. Remember, people will be scanning your articles, so it's important to get into the meat of your topic early on. Rambling and long storytelling can lose an internet reader's attention. From the first sentence of your article, launch directly into your topic.
3 - Limit your word count. A good word count goal is 400-800 words. A word count goal you will help you keep on topic and not ramble on endlessly.
4 - Keep your paragraphs short. Reading from a computer screen is a challenge, so anything you can do to make your article easy on the eyes is a benefit. Shorter paragraphs allow the reader's eyes to rest and encourage them to keep on reading. A paragraph can be as short as one sentence. Organize your article's paragraphs so that there is a lot of breathing room in between each idea.
5 - Use sub-headings to break up your article into sections. Sub-headings are like road signs that instantly alert the reader to where they are in your article. Sub-headings separate different main topics within your article, and each sub-heading should clearly stand apart from the rest of the text. You can make your sub-heading stand out by having all capital letters, or by putting a star * or arrow => in front of the sub-heading.
6 - If possible, include list items. Lists are hugely popular on the internet, probably because they are easy to skim. Popular types of list articles are 'Top Tips' articles (such as this article), and 'How To' articles.
7 - Limit your links. It's fine to share a link in your article every once in a while if absolutely necessary, but keep in mind that excessive linking in an article is distracting. Really, you want the main link clicking to be the link in your resource box.
8 - Keep your links after the fold. If you must include a link in your article body, keep it 'after the fold'. Most computer monitors cannot show an entire web page--there is a point on the page when the reader will have to manually scroll down to see the rest of your article. That point is called the 'fold'. By keeping your links away from the first half of your article, you will give your readers a chance to get interested in your article before clicking away. There are also some publishers who require that all links be kept after the fold (after the first 3 or so paragraphs).
9 - Leave something to the imagination. Don't feel pressured to include every last bit of your knowledge in an article. Respect your word count goals and leave the reader wanting more. You can provide an excellent amount of value in an article without telling every last thing about your topic. Your article should whet your reader's appetite for your topic, and then they can click the link in your resource box for more info.
10 - Edit relentlessly. Put your article away for a few days and then look at it again with fresh eyes. Remove any sentences/paragraphs that are not absolutely necessary. Each sentence should provide value and serve a purpose.
Conclusion: Following these 10 tips will allow your article to be most attractive to internet readers. The idea is to catch an internet reader's attention early on (with your title, and also with your first paragraph), to make your article visually easy to digest, to provide content of excellent value, and also to leave the reader wanting more.
Steve Shaw is an article marketing expert and founder of the popular article distribution service http://www.submityourarticle.com used by thousands of business owners. Discover how to use the power of article marketing to reach thousands of potential prospects for your website - download a powerful free report on successful article marketing from http://www.submityourarticle.com/report
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Name: Steve Shaw