Simple things to improve the readability of content.

how to improve the readability of the content

How to improve the readability of content

Creating content and reaching the target audience is a whole process. It is like joining the dots and reaching the end of a puzzle. Many factors impact the content we write, and one major factor is readability. 

Readability is how easily a text can be read and understood without difficulty. Here, let’s look at some points to improve the readability of content.

Use short sentences

Shorter sentences give readers time to understand what we intend to tell them. Longer sentences often confuse people, it takes time to process, and they end up not reading or losing interest in the content.

Use short and simple words.

Simple words used in content always have an advantage, as they keep the audience glued and engaged. While writing, always try to limit the usage of difficult words. Some people will be able to understand it, but the majority of people prefer a more simple language.

With a slight adjustment, a long word can be made short. For example, the words ‘moreover’ and ‘additionally’ can become ‘also’ which conveys the same meaning.

Use friendly fonts

When conveying a message through content, one should aim to be a delivery person, not an artist. In plain terms, using fancy fonts won’t appeal to the audience, and it further complicates reading. Using fonts like Times New Roman and Arial will do the job instead.

Paragraphs and Headings

Make sure to write clear paragraphs, stuffing too much information in a paragraph can go wrong. Try to convey the information or message in that paragraph and move onto the next one. Shorter paragraphs with commas and line spacing will work and gives time for people to read it.

Proper heading for the content is a must, it will be the starting point to get people’s attention. Then, adding subheadings is equally important, as they can provide the audience with an idea of what the content is, and it makes for easier reading.

Add Visuals

Visuals play an important role in content marketing. An all-text article or blog can become boring, and adding the right images to support the writing will be a useful plus. The images present can bring a fresh feel to the content. 

Also, when you are including any facts or numbers, try to present them in Infographics. Infographics and images improve the content structure and make the content more readable.

Avoid using Passive voice

The readability of the content is affected when you use passive voice. For example, 

Mark changed the flat tyre (active voice)

The flat tyre was changed by Mark (passive voice)

The passive voice places the focus on the verb (“changed”) rather than the subject (“Mark”). The subject is important in the content and active voice is bold and direct. Passive voice creates unnecessary long sentences, and it is better to avoid using them.

Useful Tools

If you are looking to improve, and want to make your content more readable, investing time in some useful tools will do a world of good for your writing. Tools like Hemingway Editor and Grammarly help you with the grammar, your readability score and they point out the errors in writing. Using these apps will surely improve the readability and make your writing crisp and clear.

Some other points like using transition words like similarly and but will aid in connecting the sentences and improves the writing flow. Sticking to the point or topic and not deviating from it will also be useful to engage people and improve readability.

Including the right keywords and Content readability also influences the search rankings in one way or another. Improving your content readability not only enhances the audience’s reading experience, it also proves helpful to the overall SEO as well. With good practice and these tips, you can take your content to the next level.

Some more tips:

  1. Stick to commonly used words. Keep it simple. Bear in mind not everyone who’s reading has that Master’s degree you might. Don’t make people look up a dictionary if it’s material meant to promote your business. As a thumb rule, an eighth grader should be able to understand your written content.
  2. Say what you want in the shortest way possible. That’s it.
  3. Avoid flowery/ornamental adjectives and adverbs. Don’t show off. It’s fine in a thesis, not for promotional material or anything that you’re hoping will increase footfall.
  4. Flow into the topic like you would in a conversation with another human being. You don’t just jump from one unrelated thing to another do you, in a conversation? Same rule here. Introduce a subject you want to write about, then follow a logical sequence covering all the points you want mentioned and sum it up or wrap the conversation with a brief concluding summary at the end. Break into different paragraphs just like you would take a pause when you talk. Use headers and subheadings judiciously. Remember some lazy people just read the ‘bold text.’ Write in active voice, never passive.
  5. Try to rouse one strong emotion through your writing and/or pictures. It could be joy, humour, pride, a sense of belonging, etc. It’s important to make that emotional connect with your reader to move them into doing what you want them to.
  6. Check grammar, spelling, spacing, proper usage of the parts of speech, punctuation. Don’t be that person who writes: “She finds inspiration in cooking her family and dog.”