Writing on the web has become a popular way to spread information easily and quickly. Web writing appears easy but there are some key factors that you need to consider before putting things out there for the world to see.
The main goal of putting material on the web is to get people to look at it and keep coming back for more. If the structure of a webpage isn’t easy to understand or navigate, though, reaching that goal could prove impossible. Here are 4 tips that can help make your web content more accessible and viewable for your intended readers.
4 Content and Structure Tips for Web Content
- Organize your content logically. Avoid jumping from topic to topic and placing unrelated content in the same paragraphs. Use headings and subheadings to organize your material. That way, if the reader is looking for specific information, they can jump to the section that is most relevant to them.
- Put the most important information at the top of the page. Don’t count on your audience wanting to completely read through the content presented. As stated in Sabina Idler’s article on blog.usabilla.com, entitled Top 9 Guidelines For A Better Content Organization, “When people enter your site, they always start at the top of the page,” and they may not scroll past the first bits of information they see. When using the web, people tend to have shorter attention spans. Therefore, it is helpful to follow the inverted pyramid idea, which demonstrates the largest and most important part of a pyramid should be at the top, meaning the most vital information is placed at the top of the page to ensure the most important material reaches the audience.
- Avoid creating large chunks of text. People tend to have shorter spans of attention when using the web. Nick Schaferhoff says in his article 9 Common Web Design Mistakes (And How to Avoid Them), “Most visitors today are looking to scan content quickly.” The audience wants the information they are looking for to be quick and easy to find. If there are long blocks of text, especially at the top of a website, users aren’t as likely to continue reading or return to the site. One way to combat large blocks of text is to break information into paragraphs. Another way is to add images to the page. These break the text up into manageable portions and add an engaging element to a webpage.
- Show what is most relevant. It helps to give only the most necessary information and discard anything that has no relevance to the content. Choose what needs to be said to help get the point across and leave out information that does not support the topic. Sabina Ideler’s article also notes to only include content that is relevant to visitors on a specific page of your website. For example, say I were to add the picture below to this article.
This photo is totally irrelevant to this article. Now, if I were to include the following picture:
The image above relates to Tip 2 and fits in nicely with the article.
Everyone looking to supply material online wants to gain and keep readers. So keep these 4 tips in mind, and you will be one step closer to creating more accessible and engaging content for the web.