Writing for the Webs for Beginners

Many believe (read wrongly believe) that writing for web is much different from writing for print. Generally, the rules applicable to make a good content for print are also valid for writing web content. Apart from the keyword density and a few other technical details, which indeed play an important role for web content, I hardly found any difference in these two forms of content. Therefore, one who is aware of the basics of writing for prints should also be comfortable with web content writing. Also, I heard many arguing that web readers hardly read the entire article, as they are always in hurry. But this is also applicable for newspaper readers (unless you count those who have the entire day to scrutinize the newspaper). Thus, the key for both the form of writing is to dispense useful information.

So accept the fact that your readers (both web and newspaper readers) aren’t going to read the entire content. With this comes our first tip –

Limit the text: There is no-point writing 1000 word article if you value your (as well as other’s) time and effort, unless you have something really important and interesting to say. Though there is no arbitrary limit, it is advisable to keep the content within 600 – 700 words. Generally, articles that go beyond the aforementioned word-limit tend to get shallow and prescriptive. As a writer your focus should be on creating a compelling content that would be sufficiently interesting for your readers.

Opt for shorter paragraphs: This too is applicable for both the form of content writing. Long paragraphs are obsolete even in newspapers and magazines. In fact, single-sentence paragraphs are widely used for print content as well as for web content. Apart from the technical reason of making it comfortable for the readers to move down the page, short paragraphs are easier to understand and absorb. As far as web content is concerned, using shorter paragraphs makes it easier for search engines to pick up the text.

Using heads and subheads: Rather than reading long sentences, web readers have a tendency of reading small bits of text. This form of writing is widely practiced in newspapers and magazines for ages. By using headings and subheadings, you allow readers to select information that interests them. In fact, any good article (for both the media) follows the traditional form of writing – it always begins with a proper introduction or overview, while the rest of the themes are broken down into a few sub-themes followed by a conclusion. Subheadings allow your readers to explore only the part of the content they want to read, rather than reading the whole thing. Heading and subheadings work as lead for good web content.

Finally, put all your main information up front. This is basic for print content writing; journalists call this phenomenon “inverted pyramid.” Web users mostly scan articles so put all your key information at the top to give them a good overview about your article. And do us a favor; eliminate unnecessary jargon, adjectives, and adverbs only to increase your word-count.

22 ways to write compelling content when you don’t have a clue [Infographic]

Source – Copyblogger

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