The production of content is undoubtedly one of the main pillars in the construction of a Inbound Marketing. Therefore, it is important to think about content presentation techniques that go beyond the text itself.
Have you ever thought that comfortable reading can be a good strategy to attract new users to your blog and retain those you already have?
Stay with us and find out why digitization is one of the must-see features, and how to apply it to your blog!
Why is it important to think about scannability?
Reading a text on the Internet – be it on a blog, a news site or a recipe site – is very different from reading a book, would you agree? This means that if you write very dense and long blocks of paragraphs on your blog, your reader will likely find it monotonous and may even drop the text.
However, it is important to keep in mind that even if the user may not find very long paragraphs, it is quite possible that their reading will be slower, because on the web people usually perform other tasks simultaneously.
Multiple tabs open in the browser along with other texts and spreadsheets, emails, instant messaging apps, social networks, music streaming or podcasts… are some of the factors that can hinder the attention from those who read your blog.
For this reason, if the desired content is not found quickly by the reader, your page may be omitted.. And you don’t want that to happen, do you?
This is where you can rely on scannability as a feature that will help your audience more easily find and filter the content they are looking for on your page.
How to scan a text?
You, looking for the theme scannability, you certainly found this post as a reference on the subject, didn’t you? When you open the page, you should have read the captions quickly to see if what you’re looking for is in that blog post. If that happened, you just scanned that text!
Scannability is just that. Each time a user enters a page for the first time, they do a quick read to identify if what they’re looking for will be there. And it’s how you distribute the writing and format the text that will allow your reader to scan it.
The first thing you need to consider is understanding how people scan text on the internet, so you can prioritize what should be the most visible to grab the attention of those who read your blog.
Are there any scannability standards?
There are several models to facilitate the scanning of a text, but depending on the Nielsen Norman Group, certain reading habits are more frequent among Internet users.
Standard in F, Z or Zigzag? How do you divide your reading when it’s in the text?
It is probably the most common and traditional model, but it is not the most suitable for your blog if you want to retain your audience.
This happens when a person reads the screen from left to right, then reads what is underneath diagonally until they come across a new caption.
This happens because the page may have a poor hierarchy of content and the reader is reading “diagonally” to do it faster.
It is very similar to the Z pattern, but this one is used when the paragraphs are farther apart from each other in the layout of the text. It’s more dynamic than the previous standard, but it’s still not the best choice if you want your audience to be interested in reading the full text.
This happens when people read starting at the top of the text, always following the reading from left to right. This type of reading favors the most important elements of the text, such as the title and the first paragraph.
The difference is that after reading this part, the person reads vertically along the left margin of the text, until they find new information that catches their attention. The design formed with this type of reading looks like a letter F.
If your idea is to value the visitor experience of your blog, it is essential to consider all the details that will make your text more digitizable. So remember to align your text to the left and put as much relevant information as possible in the first few lines of each blog block.
How scanability helps SEO
You might be wondering why this strategy would be so important? Is it just to make it easier for people to read your blog? Or to improve the practice of speed reading?
These are some of the points that yes digitization makes possible, but make no mistake! While not a strategy aimed directly at ranking web pages, it is a resource that can help – a lot – the SEO and the ranking of your site or blog in the major search engines.
First, a text which has good digitizability tends to have a lower Rebound rate.
If you combine this with a good distribution of the chosen keyword throughout the text, invest in attractive headlines and subdivide the text into shorter paragraphs, in addition to increasing the visitor’s stay on your page, you will improve the ability of your blog to rank well..
How to make your text more digitizable
So far you’ve seen that scannability is a key feature if you want to attract and retain visitors to your blog – and it can improve your page’s SEO as well.
But if you have any doubts on how to apply this strategy to your texts, read on, as we’ll tell you what you need to do to make your text more readable. Discover 6 valuable tips!
1 – use titles and subtitles well
They are the Securities and captions that highlight the topic you’ll be discussing in your blog post, allowing the reader to get an idea of what content they’ll find in each topic before they even read the text.
They will also facilitate the visitor’s research, in case they wish to return to a point in the text that they wish to explore further.
Hence, create direct and relevant headlines and subtitles. In addition to being the first point of a good scan, it also contributes to a better indexing in search engines like Google.
Remember to use imperative verbs, which suggest an action. And don’t forget to enter your keyword whenever possible!
2 – Separate the text into several paragraphs
When writing for an online audience, remember that using large blocks of text to say what you need is not recommended.
Ideally, you break the text into smaller paragraphs, which will improve the reading flow for your blog visitor.
It is a technique that will make your text visually less cluttered and much easier to scan.
However, pay attention to an important detail: it is essential to link one paragraph to another. It’s not enough for you to create a big block of text and then distribute it randomly.
A paragraph must logically follow the previous one. Reread the text whenever necessary so as not to lose track!
3 – Create lists, use bullets or numbers
This is a very important technique and it works very well for online reading. Your text can be better understood if you break it down into simpler pieces like the numbers or the topics used in this article.
This same resource can be used in the development of titles and subtitles, for example, in “Discover 6 tips to produce scannable content”.
4 – Use bold, italic or underlined characters to highlight
If you know how to use these elements, you can direct the interest and attention of your visitors to the most important words or parts of your text.
This highlight shows the reader what kind of content they will find and, like headlines and captions, makes it much easier to target crawl.
The use of bold or italic fonts promotes clarity of the content. Underline or capital letters should be used with more caution.
Generally, bold is used to highlight a word or passage that you want to show that is important to the content. In turn, italics can be used in quotation marks or foreign words.
5 – use images, videos and infographics
Visual resources such as images, videos or infographics Not only do they help explain or illustrate the topic being discussed, but they are also a great resource for breaking up text and improving audience scannability.
In addition to attracting attention, multimedia resources can often make it easier to understand more complex issues, which in turn generates greater identification with your audience.
It is important, when using images or videos, to consider: the quality of the image, that it speaks of identity and tom voice of the text and the description that you will put of it.
6 – Align the text to the left
Remember just above we talked about the models people use to scan text?
Aligning the text to the left, taking into account the pattern F, will make it easier for your audience to read and greatly increase their chances of retaining it on the page.
How to tell if your text is actually scannable
Have you followed all the advice we have given here, but still have doubts if your text is scannable enough? Do not worry! There are tools that can help you verify.
Tools like the Yeast, do WordPress, Readability test tool e Free readability formulas can be used strategically to analyze the scannability of your content, showing if your efforts are working or if there is something to improve.
You have seen that scannability, in addition to being a great resource for attracting new visitors to your blog, also grabs the attention of those who already make up your audience and also helps your page rank higher in search engines. .
If you want to optimize your blog more and more, be sure to check out our article with tips for creating great content.