Did you know that the average visitor to your website spends less than two minutes on each page? So you better get to your point—and fast. Writing for the web is different from writing for print, and so it’s important you adapt your content for those who skim, because the reality is that most of your visitors will only scan your content, rather than read it word for word. Ginny Redish’s book “Letting Go of the Words,” focuses on how to create content that will “answer people’s questions and let them get on with their lives.”
Here are Ginny’s 10 writing tips for the web:
- Talk to your site visitors by using “you …“
- Show that you are a real person who works with other real people. (Even if you’re in a mega-corporation, people do business with other people, so get personal, get real.)
- Write in the active voice whenever possible.
- Write simple, short, straightforward sentences.
- Cut out all unnecessary words.
- Give extra information its own place, such as another page or a footnote.
- Keep paragraphs short—no more than 2 long sentences or 3 short ones, or less.
- Start with the context—first things first, second things second.
- Put the action in the verbs, not the nouns.
- Write the way your users talk.