I think we all can agree that getting people to read our blog posts can be challenging.
Well, it turns out you can get people to read your posts by making them look better. Better looking posts improve the reader experience (website developers like to call this the user experience).
I am going to discuss five simple ways you can improve your blog posts to increase the number of readers and share volume. I also have a special graphic (Pinterest-sized) and coding further down the page you may share on your blog or with your readers.
1. Organize your blog posts
I found that using a template to draft blog posts helps me organize my writing.Headings, titles, and subtitles naturally flow from using a template.
Your template can be simple; nothing more than a list. You could create an online worksheet using Google Docs, for example. Or, like me, just a simple template written in my notebook.
Use a template to organize your blog post so that it flows. Here is an image of my template.
Not too fancy is it?
2. Use a friendly writing style
Use a first person tense not third person because blogs should be personal.
Use short words. And short paragraphs.Vary the lengths.
William Faulkner criticized Ernest Hemingway for his limited word choice. Hemingway replied:
Poor Faulkner. Does he really think big emotions come from big words? He thinks I don’t know the ten-dollar words. I know them all right. But there are older and simpler and better words, and those are the ones I use.
Do not use cliches or metaphors.
George Orwell (author of Animal Farm, Nineteen-Eighty-Four and others) had rules for writing effectively. In his essay, Politics and the English Language he said do not use metaphors. He said everyday, common metaphors lack emotional punch and no longer register with readers. Think of new ones!
3. Add media
Add pictures and/or video to your post once you have written it. Visual media helps break up blocks of text and makes the post visually appealing. Research has shown that blog images directly affects social media shares and traffic.
Whether you want to add photos or images to your blog or touch up existing posts, the following graphics tools are useful resources for you.
- CANSTOCKPHOTO – CanStockPhoto offers over 15 million professional royalty free stock photos and gives out free weekly downloads. They have tens of thousands of new images added every week with a very generous license agreement that gives great flexibility to users.
- STENCIL - Stencil is designed to help you create beautiful looking images faster than ever before. It is ideal for bloggers, social media marketers, and small businesses.
- CANVA – Canva is among the best online photo editing resource. Includes a huge number of free and low-cost photos.
- FOTOSEARCH – Fotosearch allows users to search from more than 32 million images. You have to pay for images here, but they start at just $3. You can also find royalty-free clipart pictures, illustrations, stock video clips, poster, prints, etc. on their site.
- FREE RANGE STOCK – Free Range Stock is a another source for royalty-free high resolution images for your use.
- ISTOCK – iStock offers millions of royalty-free images, illustrations, videos and music clips at reasonable prices. Members receive free stock files every week.
- MORGUEFILE – Morguefile has a huge collection of royalty-free high resolution stock photos for your personal and business use.
- PEXELS – provides high-quality free stock photos. Most are free for personal and commercial use and no attribution required under the Creative Commons Zero license.
- PIXABAY – Pixabay has over 690,000 free stock photos, videos, vectors and art illustrations. All are released free of copyrights under Creative Commons CC0 licensing.
- PIXLR – PIXLR is an easy online photo editing software program that allows you to fix and enhance photos.
- FIVERR – Fiverr is a marketplace for low-cost creative and professional services. Need design work for a logo, website, graphics or anything else, then check out Fiverr.
4. Use external and internal links
Linking to external and internal web pages improves the visitor's experience when visiting your site. Plus, it can help your own page rank better on search engines like Google. Furthermore, it helps build rapport with fellow bloggers which can lead to lucrative JV's and other forms of partnerships as well as help your website become an authority site.
When drafting new content for your blog, look for opportunities to link to your other related blog posts. Also, linking your older posts to recent ones is a way to refresh your older content. So look at older posts for opportunities to link to newer content.
These internal links can really help you with SEO, plus they have the added benefit of creating a more useful experience for visitors to your site. That's important to Google which means it can significantly increase your traffic over time.
5. Make your posts readable
You want people to read your posts. And an effective post is one that is accessable and understandable.
It is important to match the readability of your posts with the reading level of your audience. Furthermore, reading level is often equated with grade level. If you are writing to professionals, e.g. lawyers, then you would use a higher readability level. You shouldn't write to the average person as if they are lawyers, doctors, college professors, etc.
How do you know what your post readability is?
Fortunately, there are tools to help assess readability levels.
I use the Hemingway Editor to draft posts and articles. It keeps a running readability score as I write. For example, this screenshot of a rough draft on the keto draft shows the readability score of Grade 7.
The Readability Test Tool will score both text and webpages.
Since I blog on a WordPress platform, the Yoast Search Engine Optimization ISEO) plugin is a handy tool for checking readability. This screenshot shows the readability score plus some additional factors.
Copy and paste this code into your blog post or web page:
<a href="https://homebusinessforveterans.com/5-tips-for-creating-blog-posts-people-enjoy-reading"><img src="https://homebusinessforveterans.com/wp-content/uploads/2019/02/Tips-for-Creating-Blog-Posts-People-Enjoy-Reading.jpg" alt="10 Tips for Creating Blog Posts People Enjoy Reading">
As you write more blog posts or articles, these tips will become like old friends. People will want to read what you write. And will be waiting for your next creation.
As you gain experience writing, you will find your own "voice," the something that makes you and your blog unique and worth reading.