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How to make your blog more readable

26.04.2012 - 16:59

I try and keep up on quite a many blogs every day. Unfortunately I don't have all the time in world to do so and sometimes I resort to plain skimming. Unless the post seems extraordinarily interesting. I am a quite fast reader, but sometimes blogs are designed and blog posts constructed so that reading them is slow and feels like way too much of work.

Find your true voice and flow

Other people have their ways to write. And some of them like to think writing in a certain way is the only right way. I do think everyone has their own style and even if it's not perfect and the grammar correct, it's true and genuine.

Reading a text that seems overall forced is sad and unpleasant. Writing the way that feels natural for you makes the text more natural to read.

Use short paragraphs and sentences

I do it myself: Use too long paragraphs and sentences that seem to go on and on and on and... Yeah, here we go again. Long sentences are just plain difficult to read. At the point when the sentence has reached it's end the beginning has already faded from the readers memory. Besides long sentences can make the writer look stupid and ranty.

Shorter paragraphs aren't just better for skimming. They are also easier to read. On mobile long paragraphs look even worse.

In order to make your blog more readable, learn to cut your text in as short paragraphs as you can. One sentence is not usually a paragraph, but two or three can make one.

Keep it short in general

Some subjects require more words, more sentences and more paragraphs. Being able to write the same thing in fewer words, sentences and paragraphs is admirable. I can't say I'm good in it myself, but I see loads of bloggers falling into the pit of writing life long texts each and every time.

The one post doesn't have to contain all the information. Shorting the post doesn't have to mean leaving good info out. For instance try and write a series of shorter posts around one subject.

Bold it, emphasize it, but don't go crazy with it

Using bold and emphasizing is good in time to time. It gives those who skim something to catch onto and breaks the monotony of a regular post. Just don't go over the board with it. Too much is way too much.

Use subheaders

If it has to be a long post or there's different main points in it (like this one), breaking the text in chunks with subheaders is more than recommended. Subheaders are good for skimmers too, as well as they make the text easier to manage for anyone's brains.

My Finnish language teachers have always told me there must be more than one (and preferably more than two) paragraph after a header. Online this rule isn't that strict, since the texts can be and often are better and more readable if they are short. Again, moderation is due. Too many subheadings make text as impossible to read as too little.

Thank you for reading How to make your blog more readable. What do you think? Do tell!

Mervi's picture

I'm Mervi Emilia Eskelinen, an artist, and a multi-talent of web visibility and branding from Finland. I help indie businesses, freelancers and bloggers to stand out online. I have 18 years of experience and a formal education in everything about web design and development, branding and online marketing.

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7 comments for "How to make your blog more readable"

The very first weekly wrapup by tasselflower's picture
[...] found a writing on Wired about the meaning of a Klout score. The same day I wrote some advice about how to make your blog more readable. Forgot to mention that it would be best not to center the blog texts. It just looks [...]
Jacolien's picture

Wow, this is great advice!
I always have the idea that my blogposts are long and boring.
I already started to blog more frequent and about one or two subjects.
Before I'd write loooong messages about many different thing.
Thanks for all the advice, I'll try to get a hold of it!

Mervi's picture

Thank you Jacolien! I'm happy to hear this is useful.

Your blog looks interesting. I'm gonna keep checking on it! :)

Short blog posts are good | the tasselflower blog's picture
[...] Although long and detailed, informational texts may provide more insight to the subject, short tends to be better. Keeping it short tries less the readers' patience and makes your blog more readable. [...]
3 ways your blog fails | the tasselflower blog's picture
[...] horrible fonts, terrible use of colors and not using paragraphs will drown your awesome content. Make your blog more readable and your content will do the [...]
How to get more readers to your blog | the tasselflower blog's picture
[...] does come first and design must add to it. Not the other way around. Make your blog more readable and don't let it [...]
Why high bounce rate doesn't mean your site is in t's picture
[...] Make your blog more readable. Besides other details, use bigger content text size. [...]

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