Web content is something that people wish to skim through rather than read in great detail. Unlike a book, there are many distractions that accompany website content. It makes it harder for them to focus on it, thus making it difficult to hold the attention of used for more than a few minutes. And in those few minutes they will have to decide whether or not to read the entire thing or simply leave the website.
There are four major things that website users look for and expect when they surf the internet and read the written content. The writing that viewers expect to see online should be:
- Easy to understand after a simple skim through
- Writing style is direct, to the point and factual
- Focused on the needs of the reader
- Is credible content
When they are online, users read differently. They skim through it, skipping words and phrases that do not seem to be interesting. They scan for parts that hold interest for them and ignore the rest. Writers need to understand what they are looking for and write the content accordingly.
Being brief and concise will go a long way for a website. Clear and simple writing will ensure that the person reading will understand everything that is written down. If there is background information to be given, then it means that the information should be simple enough for everyone to understand.
Engage the User
Keeping in mind who the user will be and writing for them will engage the user. Talking directly to the user and will provide a sort of interaction.
Build a Sense of Trust
To make the written word reliable, it is important to build trust between the reader and the work presented to him or her. When writing, keeping in mind a few points and have the reader trust whatever is written is crucial
- Being accurate and factual
- Using fitting and appropriate information
- Protecting privacy and copyright
- Keeping the content updated
- Publishing contact details
- Proof reading the work
- Inviting people to report on errors
Test what is Written
Once the work is written down, it is a good idea to imagine how it would feel once a reader goes through it. Testing it out on readers to gauge their reaction will make the issues with them clearer. Moreover, you may even do a few statistical analyses to find out the response rate and create a few versions to see which one has the best response.
Writing for a website is difficult because websites are normally associated with entertainment. When reading through one, there is a feeling of wanting to get it over with quickly. This means that the writer has to cater to the needs of those readers who simply skim through. No detail or extra information will ever be read, so it shouldn’t be put in. having precise information, a good font, excellent color schemes and an idea of what to put in and what to exclude will give a website the popularity it needs.
Scott Heron is a web designer who has written for many company websites. His content is widely read and understood without problems. His work with Edinburgh web design is very common on the web. For more information on the writer, click here.