- Break up your posts into smaller chunks.
- Separate your posts into 3-4 main sections with bolded sub-headings.
- Use numbered and bulleted lists.
- Add quotes from other sources.
- Use visually interesting pictures.
If you have not yet read my original post on how to make your posts more readable, you can do so here.
The Goal: Turn Passing Vistors Into Readers
If you are trying to build traffic, it is important to focus on increasing the likelihood that a passing visitor will take the time to read the post based on its initial readability. Several factors come into play in order to make your articles more readable. The goal is to inspire visitors to read your articles.
TIP #1. Make your font size readable. I’m not going to lie, I was once guilty of using a 9pt font on my blog – and I guarantee that most people who attempted to read my blog either enlarged the text or simply left. Don’t take that chance. Use at least an 11pt size font for your main body text. Additionally, by using a line-height of 1.5, you are making your posts easier to visually digest, as each line is separated a little bit more.
TIP #2. Make sure the background contrasts with the foreground body text. Far too often I see a blog with clashing color combinations. Stick to dark text on a white background or white text on a dark background.
A new trend among blogs is to use a body text font-color that is a dark gray instead of black. I think a darker gray instead of black makes the text easier on the eyes. I use a dark gray on my blog which looks a lot better than a flat black.
I use to be a big fan of white text on a dark background, but I am trying to move away from that as research suggests that lighter colors are more attractive than darker colors.
TIP #3. Aspire to make your spelling and grammar perfect. Spelling and grammar are often overlooked in the blogosphere. Given my philosophy that everything we do, no matter how small, is a statement about ourselves, I strongly advise you to take the time to ensure that your spelling and grammar are as perfect as you can make them; you are thereby going one step further at conveying professionalism.
People like Shoemoney have made it almost trendy to not care about spelling and grammar, but please remember – he is an already successful and well-respected Internet personality. Most of us have not achieved that status yet.
TIP #4. Make sure your post frequency is aligned with your post length. Too often, I see posts that are either too short or too long for the blogger’s posting frequency. There is nothing wrong with either – if you already have a large, dedicated readership, then do what works. For some people, like Maki from Dosh Dosh, his readers have come to expect lengthy, detailed write-ups. Other people, like Shoemoney, get away with more frequent, shorter posts.
Since I am somewhere in-between them with respect to posting frequency, I like to post articles that are not super-lengthy, but not super-short. The rule to remember is that if you post more often (multiple times per day), then make your posts shorter, but if you post only a few times a week, your readers will appreciate lengthier and more detailed write-ups. My average word count for each post is 400-600 words.
TIP #5. Write a compelling introductory paragraph in a slightly larger font. You know how in magazines, they use a larger font size for the first paragraph or so and then transition to the normal-sized font? I adopted this technique earlier this month and it seems that I am getting more comments, which could indicate more people reading the articles. Of course, the idea behind this is to lure the readers in with the more readable larger font. I think it looks very magazine-like too.
Our blogs are like mini-magazines, and I think we should aspire to have them resemble how magazines are designed. Making your posts more readable is not difficult to do and it could well lead to a substantial increase in readership.
Several blogs that I admire for their “readability” include:
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