There’s a common, major problem that many web sites have. And this issue is causing you to lose customers. Luckily, it’s an easy one to fix.
It can make the difference between having your visitors immediately click away from your site or having them actually read your content and become valuable clients, customers and subscribers.
What is this common problem that many web sites have? A lack of proper formatting for the web.
To have an effective web site, we can’t format it the same way we would format a printed book. We have to focus on improving the readability of web site content and we need to keep in mind that people have a limited attention span on the web.
Your first impression matters. If your page or blog article is a long, mostly unformatted wall of text, you are probably losing out on business.
Here are some recommended formatting guidelines that we use when crafting compelling content for our clients’ web sites:
1. Use headers and sub-headers
Readers on the web will often scan a page or article to see if it’s worth reading. When a visitor comes to your site, they want to know, “Does this web site answer my query (that I just typed into Google)? Does this site solve my problem?”
Headers and sub-headers give your reader a quick overview of what your content is about. They are the next most important content elements, besides your page title (or headline).
2. Keep paragraphs limited to 2 or 3 sentences
Break up long paragraphs into shorter sections. This makes it much easier for visitors to read your content. Printed text can have long paragraphs, but if we do this on web sites, your visitors will be clicking off your site faster than you can say, “Hey, where did you go? Come back!”.
You can even put one sentence on its own, especially if you want something to stand out.
3. Use bold, italics and underlines
Using these elements adds visual interest and directs your reader’s attention to certain sentences and words.
Adding bold, italics and underlines helps emulate voice inflection, tone and emphasis which we use in verbal communication. Take advantage of these formatting elements to add a conversational feel to your writing which will help you connect with your audience and prospective clients more effectively.
4. Add visual variety to your pages
Break up sections of text by using lists, quotes and images. You don’t need to use all of these visual elements on every page. Use them strategically and when it makes sense to use them.
Use these formatting elements in moderation. The design and formatting of your page reflect on the level of detail and professionalism in your business. If you use proper formatting, visitors will stay on your site longer.
If you want a web site that makes you stand out from the crowd and captures your audience’s attention, get in touch with us. We’ll help you improve your content so that it converts readers into subscribers and casual browsers into motivated buyers.