A How-to Guide for Internet Writing

Writing for the internet has become a fine art, but that doesn’t make it impossible.  One of the important things to remember is how to keep people’s attention.  By keeping the writing lively and making it easy to skim, internet readers stay in touch with the subject. They might even learn something new.

One of the difficult parts about internet writing is that people usually just repurpose documents. The problem with that is that people do not want to read something that was made for print; the internet is a totally different medium. Keep in mind that attention spans are short and that rewriting content can be more useful than using the same piece over and over.

People are also becoming more visual readers and learners. A big mistake is to write a huge chunk of text – something that dense should be saved for term papers and essay exams. Instead, brief pieces that get the point across are best for a quick skim. Content density is a good idea here, but it is important not to strain the readers.

Once the basic information is out of the way, it isn’t a bad idea to throw in a few quick reference points that show additional information or review what the reader has learned already. For example,

–          Internet writing can be a great place to explore creativity in informational writing

–          Knowing your audience and or community is a good idea if you want your writing to be successful

–          Every word counts – people should know what the article is going to be about from the title and every paragraph should have its own topic.

–          People don’t want to read the same article a million times

After you’ve given people a heads up on the extra information, it is a good idea to demonstrate it or at least give people an idea of where to look next. Should someone want to practice creativity in their writing, it is helpful to know what the audience will appreciate and what they won’t enjoy. The net generation enjoys content-dense writing that is personable but easy to read.

With so much of the internet full of easy to read articles, it is super important to not write the same thing. Luckily this makes it easy to keep the articles brief and to steer clear of repetition. Take advantage of the internet and simply link other articles to your own when something needs to be explained. Readers like to choose what kinds of information they are going to read about, so let them decide when or where to cut out – on the author’s terms.

Just like readers enjoy short pieces that are to the point, visual guides also come in handy. Images that assist with the reader understanding the topic is especially helpful. Celebrity websites use this trick all the time. Their written content is super short and to the point, and mainly describes what is going on behind the photograph or videos that are included.

In the end it is important to remember that internet writing doesn’t have to be tough. Keeping the following point in mind, everyone should find success.

  1. Stay brief.
  2. Don’t use non-internet articles and essays – the internet is not a print medium.
  3. Use reference points as reminders and to summarize
  4. Be creative, but know the audience who will read the article or essay
  5. Link to other places online – people will enjoy the choices to read more and will feel like the author can understand their learning style
  6. Consider visual aids – people love pictures.
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Amie Marse is the founder of Content Equals Money. She lives in Lexington, KY with her two dogs: Billie and Lily. She has been writing content for her web based clients since 2005. She launched Content Equals Money in Oct of 2010, home of conversion focused content writing services. She loves to chat about small business development and how to make content equal money!

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