Writing content for websites is different than anything else. When reading web content, the majority of users will scan information looking for what is pertinent to them as opposed to reading word for word. When developing content for the web there are a few design guidelines you should follow:
- Use clear and simple language: Reading websites is very strenuous on users eyes. The majority of users will only scan a page hitting the high points and information. When writing content make sure to use simple language with no jargon or slang. Use shorter words and avoid complicated sentences.
- Use short paragraphs and bullets: Remember that users only scan information. Keep each paragraph to one topic. It is important that a reader could easily scan the information, get the gist of the topic, and move to the next paragraph smoothly.
- Use bold words: By bolding specific words, you can quickly help a reader locate important information. However, do not bold every word you think is important. Pick two to three words that describe the main topic. Also by bolding the words a reader will be able to quickly determine what the paragraph is about.
- Use headings and sub headers: You know now to use bold words, but headings and sub headers are another great way to break up information. There aren’t any strict rules on how many headers and sub headers to add. However, it is nice if you break up sections into 3 to 4 paragraphs.
- Align Text to the left: Text that is aligned to the left is easier to read than justified alignment. When text is justified some words are spaced more than others and does not allow the eye to smoothly read from left to right.
- Use conclusions in the beginning of the paragraph: Make it obvious what you are talking about. Readers on the web want information easily available and readable. If you put the conclusion at the beginning readers with little time know they can move on to the next paragraph without missing any important information.
By following the six guidelines outlined above, you are sure to develop web pages that are easy to understand and read. This will not only attract more users to your site but also increase your bottom line.