Train yourself to write web content
If you’ve been writing for bureaucratic reasons, putting together articles for scholarly magazines, reports for Board meetings, in other words for niche audiences, you have to change your style for the web.
Writing content online is, as the Americans say, a different ballgame.
People don’t read online, they scan.
What Readers want
They’re in a hurry to get the information they want, and move on.
They don’t have patience for obscure and complex text. And they certainly won’t scroll through masses of text either.
They already have a large number of emails in their inbox and several documents to read, so offer your readers information in easily digestible chunks. Use short sentences, short paragraphs and one idea per paragraph.
Use meaningful headlines and sub-headlines which help them nail the information they want, quickly and easily.
When writing for the web, use
- shorter sentences, words and paragraphs
- one idea per paragraph
- concise text – half the word count (or less) than writing for print
- the inverted pyramid style, with the most important point or the conclusion first.
- simple words
- bulleted lists
- meaningful headlines and subheads, avoiding cute or clever lines
See also Headlines for the Web