Sometimes I come across articles I want to read, but it physically hurts my eyes to look at them. I get so much information thrust in front of me every day that I'm forced to pick and choose very carefully which articles I dedicate my time to. (I wish I could read all day, but work must get done!)
When I find an article I want to spend time on, my curiosity has been piqued and I look forward to getting the information. If I find it difficult to read (visually or textually), I end up feeling let down. And then I furrow my brows, click my tongue, and quickly leave the website.
Not everyone thinks of this, but the formatting and readability of your online content is critically important for engaging readers. You want to make it as easy as possible for people to absorb the information you're sharing, whether it's text, graphics or a combination of both.
Example of Easy vs. Hard Blog Readability
Check out the following example of 2 blog posts. Which one does your eye gravitate toward? Which blog would you want to read?
6 Blog Readability Issues to Watch Out For
Here are some potential problems that can make your blog hard to read:
- Small font
- Light font colors on background
- Not enough white space (so eyes can rest)
- No section headers
- Not mobile friendly
- Weak intro paragraph
- Long paragraphs (a.k.a. not enough white space)
- Complicated or poor information flow
I've also read in more than one place that your blog reading level should be around the 8th grade level. I think that's a very good strategy in most cases and here's why: When people are scanning articles, they usually don't have the time or mental energy to decipher complex or hard to read information.
The best way to choose the most appropriate reading level for your blog is to have a clear vision of your target audience. Taking time to define your buyer persona's can help ensure you're creating the best messaging in the best format for your readers.
The easier you can make your articles to read, the more likely your readers will get value from their experience. And what more can you ask for than that! The last thing you want is for someone to leave your website or blog with a negative feeling.
Did you have a positive experience reading this blog? Share with me in the comments below!