It is true that digitization is taking root in all aspects of life. It has led to the creation of many websites as individuals, businesses and entities seek to carve their own niche on the online front. However, regardless of the underlying motive, it is not sufficient to just create a website. A lot has to take place so that your website has utility and meets its intended purpose.
Website design is important in creating this utility. Statistics show that poorly designed websites tend to perform poorly than well-designed ones in the following aspects:
- Bounce rates
- Duration of visits
- Number of pages per visit
Therefore, it comes as an imperative to undertake good website design. It calls for a website design strategy that will seek to improve the performance of the website.
However, implementing a web design strategy is not as easy as it seems. Fulfilling the needs of a client can be an uphill task. Also, appealing to a wide audience requires great effort. Hence, it calls for the designer to undertake superior web design and to demonstrate impressive skills.
Effective Writing and Web Design
Websites consist of three forms of content:
- Textual content
- Visual content
- Aural content
Our concern is the textual content which translates to the written part of the websites. Writing for an online audience shifts away from traditional print writing. It requires a web designer to have different sets of skills. Even the tone of a web write-up is entirely different from print. Certain keywords ought to be identified and then used to optimize the content. All this is done with a conscious effort to appeal to a broad audience.
To ensure that effective writing is given the required importance, it should be part of web design strategy. This way, it is given sufficient attention. Let us consider 4 reasons why effective writing must figure in your website design strategy.
Reasons Why Effective Writing Must Figure In Your Website Design Strategy
- It Makes Your Website Whole
As mentioned earlier, the textual content of a website is part and parcel of the website. Having a website that’s full of images or audio doesn’t make it complete. Even if they are appealing and very beautiful, a void still remains.
For a message to appeal more to a larger audience, it has to stimulate all the senses – that is sensory, the visual and the auditory. With images and audio in place, what’s left is the text. An image that is accompanied by text is more effective. It is also appreciated more and stimulates more people to action.
- It Instills Confidence
Visitors have to trust you by virtue of looking at your website
For a website to perform well and achieve its intended purpose, it has to instill confidence in all those who are visiting it. This is true with websites that have e-commerce platforms. Before a visitor commits to a transaction, he/she has to have confidence in you. They have to trust you by virtue of looking at your website.
A good web design strategy should ensure that the right elements are in place in order to stimulate a certain action. Effective writing should be undertaken in such instances to achieve this. Information that is pertinent to a transaction should be disclosed in writing in the clearest way possible. Proper product and service descriptions should be factored in the websites’ design. This builds confidence among the visitors of the website leading to more traffic and conversions.
- It Attracts and Holds Visitors for Long Periods in Your Website
People tend to scan through writing on the web
The attention span of humans has always been short-lived. With modern day dynamics, the situation has worsened. Therefore, attracting and keeping the attention of people on a single matter for long periods is such a big deal. Anyone who has managed to do this considers themselves to be lucky.
In the online sphere, people do not pay attention to write-ups in the same manner as they do with print media. They tend to scan through writing on the web. However, it has been observed that the same people would spend a considerable amount of time on a website if some writing seems interesting and catchy. They may even resort to reading the whole write-up hence making them stay even longer on the website. This has positive implications on the website as the longer the duration of a person’s stay on a website, the more likely he/she will be stimulated to action. This action could either be returning to the website, making a subscription to an offer posted or making a purchase of a product or service.
Therefore, effective writing should be part of the web design strategy since it attracts and holds people for longer periods.
- It Enhances Communication
What message does your website convey?
Communication has been considered the hallmark of any form of organization. In fact, scholars tend to assess the performance of individuals, groups, and organizations by virtue of how they communicate. The better the communication, the better the organization and effectiveness in reaching a prescribed goal. This applies to websites. Effective communication can be enhanced through effective writing. As mentioned earlier, people tend to scan through content on websites. Thus, it is essential to communicate in a clear manner such that the reader will be able to grasp the gist of your subject matter within a short time span. Information, instructions, descriptions, and correspondences have to be easily read and digested.
A web design strategy that factors in effective writing should give at the basic:
- Segment written information on a website. There should be an introduction, the main body, and the conclusion.
- Organize main ideas and points in an orderly manner. This can be done by using headlines and subtitles. This makes it easier for the reader to scan through the write-up. It will also make them easily navigate to the parts that they are more interested in. It is also a means of making the main ideas and points stand out at just a glance. The white spaces that are created when headings and subheadings are used make the write-up less intimidating. Thus, readers are drawn to it.
- Break points in paragraphs using bullets, lists or numbers to avoid sentences that are too long. This also increases the readability and organization of the write-up.
- Observe brevity. This can be done by the use of short paragraphs. Sometimes reading on a screen may pose a difficulty for some people hence using long paragraphs may aggravate the situation. Short paragraphs are also less intimidating hence readers are more drawn to them.
- Pay close attention to text formatting. Websites have the wonderful provision of giving designers a wide array of colors. They should be used effectively to appeal to the largest audience possible. Most designers prefer white or light backgrounds combined with dark texts for easy screen readability. Conversely, others prefer dark backgrounds with white text.
Indeed, effective writing should be part of any well-meaning web design strategy!
When talking about effective writing for websites, we cannot fail to mention SEO optimization. Effective writing would entail the optimization of keywords for search engines. This enables the websites to rank highly in search engines thus increasing traffic which may eventually lead to better conversion rates. When placing keywords and phrases, it is advised to check on unnecessary repetition of these phrases. Your content should be humanly readable. Many writers tend to repeat them unnecessarily under the false impression that it will translate to higher rankings on search engines. However, this is a fallacy that they should snap out of as search engines notice and lower your rankings.
Implications When Effective Writing is not figured in a Web Design Strategy
- It damages the brand. When the writing on a website becomes hard to read, difficult to grasp and has no flow, it creates bad experiences for the visitors. These experiences end up undermining the confidence and credibility of the website and the organization it represents.
- It hinders proper communication. Ineffective writing brings about a breakdown of communication. The readers fail to get the message that the writer is trying to put across. Even if they get something, it comes off as weak and distorts argumentative topics. This results in a disengaged audience.
- Operational inefficiencies. When a website cannot meet its intended purpose because of loose integration systems and frustrating processes, it ends up being a liability. The website becomes a cost that has no real benefit for the organization that it represents.
The above 4 reasons show why effective writing must figure in your web design strategy. Consider each carefully with special consideration to your web design and content.