Do You Write Articles For The Reader?

by : Steve Gillman

Why do you write articles for distribution online? If it is just so you can be an "author," you can skip this article. If it is to generate traffic to your website, you need to be writing for the reader. Here are some ways to do that.

1. Write articles on topics that interest you. This may seem contrary to the idea of writing for the reader, but it isn't. It is safe to assume that you are not the only one interested in a given topic. Writing about your own interests keeps you motivated, and you'll usually do a better job. You also normally will have more knowledge to share in an area of interest than in an area you just chose because it is popular.

2. Write a title that catches the reader's attention. There are many ways to do this, and this is a topic worthy of it's own article. The short lesson? Use words like "how to," "easy ways to," ten ways to," "secrets," and "try this." Titles that are questions can be effective too.

3. Make your writing easy on the eyes. Don't have sentences that go on and on endlessly, with more words than are necessary to make the point and without enough commas to break them up into digestible parts, and with no good reason to be that long, and which easily could have been cut into two or more shorter, easier-to-read sentences that would have been more relaxing to read - in other words, avoid sentences like this one. Oh, and have concise paragraphs of two to six sentences.

4. You should, of course, try to write articles that are truly useful, interesting or entertaining. If you can do all three in one article, that's great. At the very least, though, try to include something in your article that will be new to the average reader. Second best is describing things they already know, but in new ways. You often have to cover the same points as similar articles, but do more than that as well.

5. Keep the language simple. After scrutinizing many articles, I consider the evidence to be incontrovertible that pretentiousness in the elucidation of your information makes the loss of the reader ineluctable. In other words, use too many big words and you'll scare away many readers. You can say what you like using simple words like the ones in this sentence. No reader will stop reading a good article because the language is too simple.

6. Write a resource box that make it easy for the reader to see where he can go for more information. A list of your dozen degrees and awards will not impress him or be helpful. Say one or two things about yourself, then have a clear link, and a description of what the reader will find at your web site.

This is a short lesson on how to write articles for readers. You should also use the right keywords, so readers can find the article, and write an article description that makes them want to read it. If you also want your articles used by others, you have to write articles not only for readers, but for newsletter and web site owners. That, however, is a topic for another article.