9 Top Tips for Writing Content

Posted by Amanda on 19 February 2011 | 0 Comments

Getting ready to write contentContent writing is probably the hardest part of putting together your website and is always the most time consuming part because everyone under estimates how much time is actually required. Here are 9 top tips to help you on your way.

1. Get comfortable

For me, there is nothing worse that trying to write content when you are being forced to do so. Make sure you find a spot that is comfortable for you, whether that be writing your content by hand, or directly into the computer. Eliminate as many distractions as you can to improve your focus, and, particularly if you're writing about something you are passionate about, the words should flow.

2. One idea per paragraph

If you chop and change your ideas within a paragraph, your readers will become confused. It is better to have short paragraphs that focus on one idea, than to have one big paragraph crammed with every thought in your head. Try to keep your paragraphs relevant and interesting for your readers, and update it as often as you need to keep your information current.

3. Why is your content important?

Most people don't write content just because they can, there is usually a purpose behind it. Like this post for example, my purpose is to help make it easier for you to write website content, which will in turn help cut down the time that I wait for my clients to provide it. Make sure you know why your content is important for your readers, and try to keep this focus throughout your article.

4. Use headings

Heading can break up your paragraphs, and also helps your readers. Most readers will scan the headings to see if the article is worth reading, and if a heading grabs their attention, they will then read the paragraph underneath. By using headings and making them attention grabbing, your readers will read most, if not all, of your content.

5. Use images, diagrams or lists to break up content

Alot of internet surfers will be put off if they see a big block of text, and only the people very interested in what you are writing will stick around to read the full page.

Using images and diagrams will help your readers to visualise what you are talking about, and can also help with understanding. Images can also be the trigger that will make your visitors read the entire page.

Lists are another helpful way of breaking up content, and will allow your readers to read the main points quickly. Like this article is a list, there are numbered points that you as the reader can look over, and then more details below those points for anyone who wants more information.

6. Use a spell checker

It's such a simple tool but so few people use it. There is nothing worse that trying to entice your readers with a page full of spelling mistakes. This, along with step 8 should help insure that your content makes sense and is spelt correctly.

7. Research your topic

It's very hard to write about what you don't know. For most business owners, you'll know your business and it's products inside out. But if you are branching out a bit, be sure to have your facts correct.

8. Read out loud

Our brains have a bad habit of tricking us into thinking that what we have written down makes sense. The best way to overcome this is to read your content out loud. It not only checks that your words make sense, but it also helps you make sure they flow correctly too. A good idea is to read your content to a friend - this way you check it makes sense and flows, and they will also pick up anything that sounds a bit off.

9. Done is better than perfect

Time and time again, I see people who are focused on getting their content so perfect that by the time it's ready, it's already out of date. Your website should be a living thing and updated regularly. Put your content up when it makes sense and is spell checked. Come back to it within a month and refine. In the meantime your website is live and you start the important process of being found in search engines and informing your potential customers about what you do.

Do you have any other tips? Please submit them in the comments below!


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