How to Help People Skim Your Super Web Copy
That page-long blog post you painstakingly drafted, revised, re-revised and perfected?
Yeahh. Nobody wants to read that.
It’s not your fault! Everyone wants to skim.
Readers turn to the web when they need help with something – car repairs, kitchen insight, or a list of great restaurants. Your job is to help ’em get what’s important, as quickly as possible. When you’ve got a rough draft, here are 3 questions to ask to help make your content clear:
1. Can I “Get the Gist” in 10 Seconds?
Just because you publish content doesn’t mean readers know it’s worth reading! Help them along by making it easy to see whether or not your content is relevant to your readers’ needs. (Don’t think 10 seconds is long enough? Time it out, it’s an eternity.)
Fix This: Make sure your header / subheader(s) read loud and clear.
Don’t have subheaders? Add ‘em! It turns paragraphs into snackable chunks. You can number your subheaders to create a list, too.
2. Is the Content Visual?
A page filled with only paragraphs of black and white text overwhelms readers. Visual tweaks can help make your stuff more approachable. Graphics can also help draw the eye to your main points, your best sentence, or your call to action.
Fix This: Help readers by using bullet points, an eye-catching hyperlink style, or relevant photos.
Your visual tweaks should always support the story you’re sharing. Be sure to use real photos, professional quality when possible.
3. Does the Content Look Sharp on Mobile?
At Savage, 20% of users visit our site on a mobile device. So much content is consumed while people are doing something else – like on the train during a morning commute, at the gym, or in a waiting room. Your content has to look good on a 5” screen.
Fix This: Preview your draft content on your phone or tablet before publishing. A reader should be able to scan through and get your takeaways without scrolling through endless text.
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