Writing a blog post is an art form. It’s one that requires you to care about the end user.
Think about the blog you’re reading right now.
Why am I writing one sentence at a time?
Because it’s easier for you to read. (See how I also just used bold text to draw your eyes in?)
The more you consider your formatting, the better your chances are of getting a reader to stick around and see what you have to offer.
Have you ever landed on one of those obnoxious Facebook clickbait articles where you have to read one small paragraph and then click “next” 17 times?
Do you, like me, give up on reading the ten funny text messages sent to strangers because it’s so annoying to click “next” that many times?
The same goes for your own readers.
Don’t make it difficult.
Take it from me- this is an ongoing thing at my own website, where I’m working to make things easier to find. Not taking these steps early on is creating a lot of work after the fact. Whether you’ve got to go back and fix things later or if you want to knock it out of the park right away, formatting matters.
The content inside your blog post is certainly important but you should never neglect the format. The reason for this is because you could be limiting your readership and the number of people who start at top and read all the way to the bottom simply by your formatting.
You could have content gold in there, but people will never see it. It is not enough to write just for the search engines.
You garner readership and long term loyalty from your clients and customers based on amazing content but they have to be able to read it in a way that makes sense for them.
Don’t underestimate just how much format can turn your potential reader off from finishing the article. Some good formatting guidelines for a blog post include:
- Using subheaders throughout. H1, H2 and H3 tags are easily formatted inside WordPress and can help your reader flow through the document more easily. They can scan the document when they first land on the page in order to see what’s most relevant to them and to get a sense of how long the post is overall.
- Don’t write long paragraphs. If you have hundreds of words per paragraph, no one is reading it. A good guideline is one to three sentences. If you have been lumping all of your content together, most people aren’t reading all of it.
- Use bullet points just like I am doing right here within this blog post. Bullet points help to draw the eye in visually and to break up huge chunks of text. It can help to highlight the most important information that people need to know.
When incorporating these various tips into formatting your blog post, finish the post, step away for a couple of hours or a day and come back and take a look at the format. If you are browsing on your phone, will this be easy to read? Would somebody be able to follow the format from the top to the bottom based on the tools you have used like headers, bullet-points and shorter paragraphs?
Recapping your points at the bottom and prompting someone to take a next step is a common component of many blog posts today. But if no one gets down to that point of what you have written, it is hardly worth it.
How to Use Subheaders
Using subheaders, as I’ve just done, gives you a heads up about what this page is about and the various categories I’ve broken this blog down into. It draws your eyes in visually and helps people scan things quickly to determine whether they want to read the whole thing.
Subheaders can be considered as early as your outline process, since they are the main ideas of your overall blog post.
Think about key ideas and how you can break your blog into 2-5 total ideas. This will help keep you focused when writing, too!
How to Use Images
Images within your blog posts go a long way towards, once again, highlighting what the blog is about.
However, they also help to add some further appeal. Colorful images pop on social media sites, especially Pinterest.
You want to grab someone’s attention and bring them to the more text-heavy blog site itself?
You need powerful images that communicate your value.
In order to write a great blog post, remember your reader. Using subheaders, bullets, and smaller blocks of text are all better for your end result.
Consider how these formatting tips can help you enhance your existing blog post or write new ones in a better way.