Website Texts for Fast Reads
Website texts are a special type of text. Differences to the printed word are mainly a result of the large selection of texts on the same subject that are immediately available on the Internet. This is why it is much more likely that a reader will stop reading an online text than a print text and click to another item.
Users read website texts differently than they do print texts. They scan the text and search for specific information and are much more selective than when reading newspaper or magazine articles. The Internet user is accustomed to obtaining the desired information quickly and easily. This is why web texts generally have the following distinctive features:
- The paragraphs are short. Each paragraph deals with no more than one subject matter.
- The text is divided into many subheadings.
- There are numerous numbered and unnumbered lists.
- The text incorporates internal and external links.
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Tips for Good Website Texts
What makes a good website text? In most cases the answer is quite simple: The text is successful when it contributes to the user performing the desired conversion. A good website text can lead the reader to his/her goal. This goal can be the purchase of a product, the click to a subsequent page or the transfer of data (for instance, signing up for a newsletter.)
These texts generally work according to a simple principle – first by arousing interest, and then by providing a quick and simple solution. The three most important features of a good website text are:
- Choice of words and tone are directed at the respective target group.
- Short paragraphs, short sentences and avoiding long words make a text clearer and easier to read.
- Subheadings, bullet points and information panels break up the text.
However, some websites are not aiming for a specifically measurable conversion. In content marketing, texts focus on information and content – whatever it is the Internet user is searching for. An informative text with added value for the reader strengthens the reputation of the company that is providing this text.
Active speech helps making a website text easier to understand. Passive constructions seem slow and laborious, whereas active constructions add momentum to a text. For example:
- Passive: The text is read by the user.
- Active: The user reads the text.
Keywords for SEO
On the Internet, users generally land on a website text page via a Google search query. The better a text ranks on Google, the higher the digital attention will be. Good website texts are therefore search engine optimized. The Google algorithms are trained to recognize the relevance of a text for a specific search term based on keywords and synonyms.
In a search engine optimized text the main keyword must therefore appear with a certain frequency: approximately 1 to 2% of the words. In addition, it contains synonyms and words within the context of the main keyword. However, an inflationary collection of the search term is damaging. Keyword spamming can have a negative influence on the Google ranking.
In the early years of the World Wide Web, keywords were ascribed with an overwhelming significance – today the use of search engine optimized keywords is more reserved. Finally, the quality of the website text and user feedback are what determine a good Google ranking. Google measures the dwell time and takes a negative stance on high bounce rates.
Google also Appreciates Correct HTML
HTML is the Internet language. This markup language is used to format and structure Internet pages. This is of interest to the visual display of a page in the browser as well as to the SEO. Google’s robots “read” HTML. The current HTML5 standard includes many elements that clearly display the semantic significance of text sections:
- Headlines (<h1>, <h2> etc.) and paragraphs (<p>) make the text clear and give it structure.
- Accents and emphases (<strong> and <em>) are eye-catchers for the readers and are also noticed by Google.
- Lists (<ul> and <ol>) break up the visuals of a text. They provide the reader with orientation.
- Other semantic HTML markups are for instance <nav> for navigation, <article> for a self-contained article or <blockquote> for a quote.
Furthermore, website texts contain invisible elements. For instance the meta tag description, which is ideally filled with a short and precise summary. This small text (known as a snippet) appears in the Google search results list as a short description of the respective website content. The more accurate this text is, the higher the probability that the user will visit the page.
How to write successful website texts
Good website texts are target group oriented texts. Finding the right tone requires sure instincts. The wrong choice of language can easily drive customers away. This is why many companies outsource their text creation to text service agencies. In doing so they benefit from the know-how of professional authors who specialize in writing website texts – and are savvy with HTML.