There is certainly a case to be made that people get too caught up in making sure they are putting quality content on the internet. It is well documented that web users tend to just skim through sites scanning for the exact information they need, and a lot of content is SEO driven anyway.
However, there are certainly still steps you can take to ensure that your content attracts as much attention as possible. Here are five ways of ensuring people pay attention to your content:
1. Keep Web Pages Short
The speed at which web surfers can jump from page to page leave them with little patience for essay-like content. If a visitor to your site has to scroll seemingly endlessly reading one section after another with no breaks they are likely just to skip it all. Keep content concise and use navigation to guide users from one section to another.
2. Make Content Readable
It sounds obvious, but a surprising number of websites have writing where the actual content is fine but is simply too difficult to read. An extravagant font is all well and good, and they have their place, but the most important thing to consider is whether or not they are readable. Remember that you are trying to get a message across to potential customers; make this process as fluid as possible for them.
3. Don’t Distract From Your Own Content
The overwhelming number of distractions on the web is what makes it both wonderful and endlessly frustrating. Especially for website owners fighting to be heard. Regardless, it’s outwith our control. What isn’t out of our control though, is distracting from our own content.
Don’t integrate advertisements into content. It might work in the short-term for generating revenue but long-term it will just annoy and distract readers while cheapening quality content.
Oh, and avoid using animated GIFs. They look unprofessional and catch the user’s eye. Whenever a user is looking at something that isn’t content, they aren’t reading it.
4. Avoid Annoying Readers into Leaving.
Remember, for a user to read your content they have to actually be on your site. Don’t annoy them to the point they leave entirely.
Using harsh colours might make your website eye-grabbing, but it also makes your site uncomfortable to look at for more than 10 seconds.
Perhaps most importantly, don’t make a potential reader watch something or enter their details to access the full site. Over 40% of web users will abandon a page if it takes over three seconds to load. Asking them to sit through a video or registration process is just unrealistic.
5. Help the Reader Along
Let’s face it, none of us want to scroll through screeds and screeds of content to find what we need. If we need information on one specific topic and click a page to see ten paragraphs of untitled content, we are less likely to dive in.
- Add a title telling the user what they can expect from the following paragraph every time you touch on a new topic (not to mention this is also helpful for SEO purposes).
- Make sure the first sentence of every section of content tells the user what they can expect if they read on. Think of it like a pyramid. Content should begin with a concise and informative sentence, then expand down from there.
- Finally, remember how many readers scan. Any important sentences that can help to summarise the topic being covered can be written in bold text to help grab their attention.
Need Help With Your Copywriting?
It may well be the case that coercing web users into reading content is always going to be an uphill battle. Increasing amounts of research are showing the fleeting way in which readers fly through content.
However, there will always be a place for quality writing on the internet. You might have to adapt to a new style and learn a few tricks but keep doing what you’re doing. Somebody has to! But if you’re struggling, then call us on 0141 429 2942. Our team of wordsmiths are waiting!