To begin writing effective blog posts, we must start with quality, engaging, and compelling content. But how do we present that content in a way that is appealing to our readers? I have compiled a list below of the basic principles to formatting effective blog posts to get you started.
Make Your Writing Scannable
- Lists: List posts are great for generating traffic. They are easily scannable, neatly presented, easy to link to, and can be persuasive in nature.
- Font: You want to vary your font sizes, use bolds, capitals, underlining and italics. This will break up your text visually, drawing the eyes of your readers to certain key points in your post.
- Images: Adding images to your posts makes them visual appealing. People are drawn to pictures and colors. Use images throughout your longer posts to keep people engaged.
- Quotes: Use boxes or borders around quotes. This will draw attention to important points you wish to make.
- White space: Leaving white space helps to break up the text, making it more visually appealing and easier to scan.
- Use short paragraphs: Break up larger chunks of text into small bite-size pieces. Long paragraphs are unattractive online and not easily scannable.
- Subheadings: Use subheadings to break up text and to accentuate key points in your content.
- Call-to-action: Invite your reader to participate, whether it be to follow the advice you give in your post or to sign up for your newsletter or next online course.
Use Titles Effectively
- Keywords: Use keywords to attract attention. Your title is what will determine whether someone will actually read your post. Use words that will grab their attention.
- Meet a need of your ideal reader: First, you must understand who your ideal reader is. You can do this by creating a reader profile (you can read more about that here). Once you know your ideal reader, you will be able to identify their needs and craft your post title and content accordingly.
- Clarity: Don’t be cryptic when writing your title. Your title should make it clear what your post is about.
- Be intentional: Don’t rush through the process. Take your time when drafting your titles as this is more often than not the determining factor in whether someone reads your post or passes it by.