Your content is precious, and you know it has to be interesting to attract the right audience.
You have done your research, painstakingly crafting each line. Then you click the “publish” button, and what happens? Nothing. Nobody has read it. No comments, retweets or shares online.
One of the hardest struggles for a writer is knowing that nobody is interested in their work. It is enough to make them depressed, killing the motivation to continue creating great content.
You probably don’t need to spend another few thousand hours polishing your writing skills. In fact, the solution is like much easier than that. Writing less and developing your content structure so it is easier to read may be all you need to draw and retain attention. This guide contains tips from dailyposts.co.uk, one of the leading writing agencies in the world today.
In a study conducted by Jacob Nielson, back in 1997, it was revealed that 79 percent of internet users scan content rather than read.
Think about how you peruse the internet. You are searching for information, and if you don’t find it on the site you visit, you click “back” and go elsewhere. The internet is a “lean forward and engage” medium. Television, on the other hand, is a “lean back and entertain me” medium.
What can you do to interest readers so they can lean forward and engage your content? You want them to stay on your page as long as possible and interact with other material on your website.
1. Make it quick
To write successfully for an online audience, you need to put aside some of the things you learned in English Composition class.
Accept that people scan web content rather than reading word for word, and have this in mind when creating yours.
If you want to write on a complex subject, consider splitting it into a series of posts. It’s a great way to keep readers coming back for more. Your audience will also find it easier to assimilate content when it is offered in controlled bits.
Structure your paragraphs in an inverted pyramid format. This means presenting your conclusion first and backing it with sentences that follow.
2. Embrace the line break
There are easy ways to make your content more interesting. Even complex content can be written in a ready-friendly format by simply introducing plenty of white space. Use one idea for each paragraph and keep them succinct—3 to 4 sentences at most.
You can even write some paragraphs with a single sentence.
3. Break up your content with persuasive subheads
It is usually helpful to start by writing your headlines and subheads first.
A strong headline is important for getting readers captivated enough to check you out. Powerful subheads keep the audience engaged, serving as ‘small headlines’ to keep them sailing through the remainder of your content.
Your subheads should be stimulating, but informative. Online readers have sharp BS radars, so avoid exaggerating or you will lose credibility. “Compelling” isn’t the same as “hype”.
4. Use bulleted lists
- They create a captivation your audience can’t resist.
- They are a scannable way to state multiple points.
- They break the monotony of your text, offering a visual relief for your reader.
As an internet reader, yourself, think about how welcoming bulleted points seem after a long paragraph block. They also create a good format for your content, making you prioritise and present your points in a readable manner.
If your writing seems dull or too long, it could be because your content is packed tightly. Remember the white space mentioned previously? Bullets also add white space to articles, making them more agreeable.
5. Add relevant links
Inserting links back to your own content will retain people on your website. It is also a clever way to point them to previous posts they may not have read.
External links show that you have researched the subject extensively and want to acknowledge other experts. Good content contains both internal and external links, and can be used to widen your reader’s level of understanding.
Another benefit of internal links is that it gives you recognition when someone copies and pastes your work onto their own site (without the intention of acknowledging you).
Creating content is about having your readers in mind. When you empathise with their reading experience, you will be able to produce content that interests them.