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Writing for the Web

For most people, reading on the web is harder on the eyes than reading from a piece of paper.

By some estimates, readers actually read only 20% of the words on a page. Therefore, it is important to make content as easy to read as possible.

Write for Humans

  • Avoid complex words (jargon) wherever possible.
  • Lead with the most important information.
  • Use an active voice.
  • Aim for a 6th - 8th grade reading level (not because our audience is that young or unintelligent, but because people are skimming fast and we want our message to be understood).
  • Spell out acronyms on first use.

Keep it Short

  • Cut your content in half. Then cut it in half again.
  • Remember: short words, short sentences, short paragraphs.

"Chunk" Your Content

  • Use descriptive and meaningful headings (and nest headings properly!).
  • Use bulleted lists to break up content, where appropriate.