How Presentation and Interaction are Critical to the Success of Your Web Content

While great content is a critical factor in the success of a website presentation and whether the reader can successfully interact with that content are also high on the list.  People, at heart, are rather superficial, and whether we want to admit it or not we respond to appearances. Those appearances impact our feelings, our perceptions and our choices, and the appearance of any given website can impact whether people will trust that website and, by extension, the business.

Even with stellar content, if the presentation and appearance don’t mesh, people will spend less time reading the content, may assume the company is amateurish, and could even question the company’s ability to produce what it is promising. Website owners should always guard against a cheap or amateurish-appearing site unless they want the first impression of their readers to be a negative one. The company website represents the organization’s brand, giving an immediate impression of credibility and professionalism.

Great Content May Never Be Read Without Great Presentation

In order to ensure readers actually make it to the engaging, compelling and informative content, the website must be presented in a clean, well-organized manner with a clearly presented logo or brand. Navigation should be clear and simple, guiding visitors to the parts of the website the owner deems most important. Communication with visitors can be accomplished through imagery and visual cues, guiding readers to the meat of the site—the content. Within the content links can direct readers to related articles or background information or, if writing for a blog, the writer can link to earlier posts the reader might find equally relevant.

Web Writing Goals

The web writer must consider all the contexts in which their words may be found, hence the importance of titles. Content must be broken down into chunks of text with section headings which allows readers to quickly find the information they are looking for. It cannot be said enough that Internet content must be scannable—after all, if no one reads the content, then how valuable can it really be. Content that is compelling, personal and energetic, written in the active voice is almost always the best choice. Writing that comes with a bit of attitude can also be appealing to readers, but the ultimate test of whether your words will be read lies in the presentation.

Allowing the Reader to Interact With the Story

Beyond great content and superb presentation, web writing must encourage reader interaction. Readers want to feel as though they are having a conversation with a trusted friend, so take the necessary time to turn a mass of words into something that draws the reader in. Even complex subject matter can be made much more reader friendly with the inclusion of white space—one idea per paragraph and paragraphs that are no more than 5-6 sentences contribute to that white space. Strong headlines get readers involved in the content, while equally strong subheads hold the attention throughout the page. These techniques which are not specifically noticed by readers nonetheless allow them to be drawn into the story, becoming fully engaged and reading to the very end. Content is king, but presentation and interaction are strong supporting players.


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