6 Steps of Writing Amazing Web Content
Becoming a publisher has become much simpler. All you need is a PC, a steady internet connection and something to write about.
Before the internet, getting your content ‘published’ was very difficult. Now, you can self-publish.
However, the simplicity of content publication has generated a misconception – “Web content is easy to write.”
It isn’t. The basics of writing a good copy apply on web content as well. You’ll need to follow the fundamentals to create content which captivates the readers.
Still, web content is easier to write than any other one. With the basics in mind and flair to write, you can start creating content for the internet.
How Web Content is Different from others?
Offline content (print media, brochures, etc.) is quite different from the online one. The difference lies in how people consume the content.
When someone reads a newspaper, he (or she) reads every line. It is a relaxed activity.
On the other hand, when someone reads an article online, he (or she) skims through. The attention span is minute during online reading.
So there’s no space for long paragraphs or complex words when you write online. It demands simplicity. A basic thing to remember is to write as if you’re talking.
When you write for the web, you need to write as if you’re having a conversation with the reader. And during the conversation, you need to engage, persuade and educate the reader as well.
How to do that?
That’s what you’ll find out in the below points:
The 6 Steps of Writing Amazing Web Content:
What is it you’re going to write about?
Will it be a promotional piece or an informational one? You need to know the purpose of your content before you begin working on it.
Strategize. Write down the list of things you’ll be doing for a particular piece. It’ll not only ensure you avoid procrastination but also mistakes. Your list could be like this:
- Research the audience
- Perform keyword research
- Find out more information
- Write a headline
- Create a structure
- Write the article
Tick off every step as you move on. It’s simple but effective in ensuring you write an effective web copy.
Also Read: 5 Tips on How to Make Good Content Decisions
Targeting your Audience:
Now that you know what you have to do, you should start doing the research for your audience.
If you have no one to talk to, how will you have a conversation? Doing audience research is a deep yet fun process.
You’ll need to know who you’re talking to. What are their common interests? What are their likes and dislikes?
Knowing the ‘person’ on the other end will help you write better copy. The chances of engaging the reader will increase automatically when you know them well.
How to find out about them?
First, recognize who’ll be in your audience. Their age, marital status, profession and other basic information will help you sort out your audience from the rest of the internet.
You will need to contact the people who are in your audience. Do interviews, visit forums or social media platforms. Search about relevant topics in their interests and read.
You’ll need to talk in the language your audience uses. That’s why going where they hang out is the best thing you can do.
What is the use of writing great content if no one can find it?
To make sure your content reaches the audience it intends to, you should use SEO. Perform keyword research and keep them in mind as you write.
Don’t stuff your content with keywords. They should come in your content naturally. For links, provide credible and trusted links which you’d like to visit yourself.
Your research of the target audience will help you in this regard. The keywords will influence your headings and topics.
You’ll have to determine the structure of your copy before you start writing. Why?
Because it helps in keeping your thought process linear while ensuring your content is according to the topic.
If you’re writing a recipe for a cake, then you won’t want to start discussing the history of bread, right?
It’s easy to get lost in the train of thought while writing a copy. Determining a structure will ensure such a mistake doesn’t happen. The structure of web content is vital for its success.
It can be broken down into two sections:
Copyblogger says that around 80% people click on an article because of its headline. That means, only 1/5th of the readers visit a page because of the underlying content.
Your headline gives the readers a glimpse of what’s inside. It’s the teaser of your content and the reach of your content depends mostly on it.
You should keep the headline simple, curious and exciting. Take inspiration from the headlines of magazines (Forbes, Fortune, Vogue, etc.).
See how they entice the readers while capturing their attention.
While the headline ensures that people visit your page, the sub-headings make sure that the people stay.
People skim online. And when they’re skimming, they don’t have time to read every line.
That’s where your sub-headings come. They inform the reader of what’s in the content. They have to be informative and connected to the content.
Many readers tend to scroll through an article only to see what it’s about. The sub-headings will give that information.
While writing the sub-headings, keep these points in mind:
- Keep them short
- Provide info
- Don’t forget the context
What differentiates you from the rest of them?
Your brand voice. It is the most important part of any online content. Every brand has a personality (just like you) and your brand voice expresses this personality.
It not only helps in distinguishing your brand but it also helps you in connecting with your audience. It makes the readers realize that there’s a person on the other end as well.
Using the right tone with your voice will help you stay relevant and build trust. It makes people realize that a human has written the content and not a robot.
How to find your voice?
Understand your brand and yourself. How do you talk? If your brand had a living mascot, how would it behave? Casually or formally? Smartly or funnily?
Your voice shows your brand’s (and your) attitude. That’s why it is able to make you stand apart from the rest of the market.
Don’t hit the publish button!
Before you do, you need to edit the article. Editing the content is just as important as writing it. Why?
Because it rectifies errors, spots the weak points, and refines your copy.
If possible, you should sleep on it. Re-visit the content after a night’s sleep and finding errors will be easier. When someone publishes unfinished content, it harms the brand because people realize that the writer doesn’t care.
You’ll find areas to improve, remove and add when you will edit the article. You can ask someone else to read the content as well. Their new perspective might help you find new areas for improvements.
Read the content aloud. Your hearing sense will be also active and you’ll see how your content feels.
You create a journey when you write online. You’re talking with like-minded individuals who want some information. And when you provide them with the required information with clarity, you gain their trust.
This is how web content works.
How do you write your content? What do you think of these tips? Let us know.