Hey, it’s Tyree from Website Muscle. We are going through our top 10 must-dos for good blog posts, and so far we have covered:
- Compelling headlines,
- Proper headings, and
- Bullets and numbered lists.
That takes us to number four, short, concise paragraphs and sentences — or, more simply, short text.
Short sentences and short paragraphs help with readability. People don’t read, they scan, remember?
Also, most likely, they’re also reading from a really small screen. Most people are on their mobile devices, so not super conducive to reading extensive amounts of content. So breaking up the content with short sentences and short paragraphs makes the content more easily digestible and more readable, and it also helps you.
Choose Your Words Carefully
As a blogger, you need to be as clear and intentional with your word choice as possible, because you know that you have to get your point across in fewer words.
You don’t have much time to get or keep a reader’s attention.
We’re talking seconds here.
So it’s very important to have short, concise sentences and paragraphs.
Short Text Best Practices
Here are a few rules of thumb.
We like to keep the posts at a 300-word minimum, max of 800 or 900 words. WordPress has a word count at the bottom of every post or page, so you can see that. Also, word processors do as well.
If it’s good content but it’s too long, break it up into two posts. If it’s not long enough, wait until you have more to gather it up together.
Also, blog posts should not be less than 300 words. They should not be a sentence or two long. That’s not a blog post, okay? If you can’t reach a minimum level of content, then just nix it altogether.
Write at about a junior high reading level. We have a couple of tools that we use to determine that. The Hemingway Editor is great. Also, the Flesch reading ease and the Yoast SEO plugin will give you an idea of what the reading level is.
Avoid industry jargon. Your readers most likely do not use the same terminology that you do, so skip the mumbo jumbo and talk to your audience. Be consistent with your grammar and spelling. If you capitalize something once, capitalize it always. If you hyphenate it once, hyphenate it always. And proofread, or, better yet, have someone else proofread for you.
Finally, the content needs to be interesting to your users. If it’s only interesting to you, if it’s only interesting to your employees or your colleagues or your competitors, it’s not blog-worthy. You want sharable content, and it’s got to be valuable to your audience, okay?
So it’s super important to break up that content into short, concise, readable bits. And we’re using our headlines, and our headings, and our bullets and numbered lists. It’s going to be great. These are really easy tips, but they make a huge difference.
Our “Blog Writing Guide” eBook has 10 tips on creating the most effective blog posts for your business. Download it here.