After publishing “What is Quality Content” on this blog yesterday, I received some nice comments from some of you and also received emails in regards to the topic. Someone asked me a simple question via email which has prompted me to write this article titled “How to structure a prefect article”.
Structuring an article in the right manner can greatly improve your readership and followership. I have been to some blogs and read some articles with great value and information to share, but due to the way the articles were poorly structured I was discouraged to revisit.
So the question I was asked was “how can I structure my article to encourage my readers to keep coming back for more?” So in this article I will try and explain how you can structure a perfect article to get your visitors to keep coming back for more.
But first let me explain the concept so you will get a clear insight into what the topic is all about. Structuring an article is all about the ways you present your article and points for your readers to easily grab what the topic is all about. With that said, let’s see how to structure a prefect article…
Structuring a Perfect Article:
Title – the bait: Structuring an article starts with the title. The title of the article is as important as the rest of the article. A good title can make the difference in who decides to read the article or not. So you must ensure to raise and catch your audience interests first with your choice of article titles.
You must ensure to use your article titles as baits to attract readers. The title must be catchy and relevant to the content, concise but complete. The title gets read more than anything else on your blog, that’s why your title serves one goal; getting people’s attention and compels them to read at least the opening paragraph of the article.
Opening Paragraph: The opening paragraph is the next most important part of your article structure. If you can get people to read the first 3-4 sentences of the opening paragraph, they are more likely to read the entire article.
Just like I explained above, if you can catch people’s attention with your title, you have to retain that attention and even raise more interest with your opening paragraph. That is why you must be careful with what you say on your opening paragraphs.
Present the objectives of the article in your opening paragraph, analyze the problems here and state how you intend to solve them. Reader will like to know how well you understand their problems, so when you state the objectives and analyze the problems, you connect with them at that level. Stating how you intend to solve the problem will convince them to read the entire article to find the solution they seek.
That said, the point of the opening paragraph is to get people to read the rest of the article by convincing them that you understand their problems, and have just the solution for it somewhere within the article.
Subheadings: Subheading is like the stairway to the right information. You have to bear in mind that not everyone that visits your blog has the time to read through every single word in your articles. In fact research has shown that more people skim through articles than read the entire thing.
When you divide your article into relevant sub-headings, the article will become very easy to read and understand. A well structured article will have subheadings highlighting the various aspects of the article.
Readability: The Flesch–Kincaid readability tests explain the formula Flesch Reading Ease Score. The Readability score of an article determines how easy people will read and understand your articles. You must ensure to make it easy for people to read and understand your articles if you want them to keep coming back for more.
English language is not everyone’s first language, so you must understand your site’s demography and ensure to write articles they can read and understand. WordPress SEO has the readability test integrated in their awesome plugin that gives the readability score of every article you published.
From experience I have learnt that brief paragraphs and the use of simple words improve the readability score and make it quite easy for people to read and understand your articles.
Images: Images they say speaks more than a thousand words. Images are quite important for illustrations if you are to structure a perfect article. I often place an image between my opening paragraph and the other part of the article.
This is to take their mind a little further into what the article is all about even without them having to read. People often make snap decisions about texts and prefer visual contents and at that point when they are contemplating if to continue reading or to bounce off, I present them with an image that can add to their curiosity and entice them to read the rest of the article. You can also place other images on other strategic positions within the article. Wide and tall images are known to perform better.
Resources/Links: A reader will be pleased to know your claims are not all there is to the article. Give them data from other trusted sources to convince them you know what you are saying. Don’t just write and write, this may bore them and make them to leave even before finishing the article.
Link to other related articles on your blog or other sources; quote authorities and entice your audience with it.
Proper Formatting/Styling: Another way to structure a perfect article is in the formatting and styling. Ensure to keep your article neat, format your contents with easy to read fonts and colors. Use numbers and bullets where appropriate.
If you notice I use the Justify alignment on my blog to align both sides of my article in a block form, this makes my article neat and easy to skim and read. I bold, underline and italicize where appropriate.
Avoid Grammatical/Spelling Errors: Grammatical and spelling errors can damage your readership and followership. Ensure to avoid such errors in your article. Use word processor software like Microsoft Word to type your article before transferring to your blog editor for publication.
That way you notice errors in spellings and grammar. Microsoft Word will highlight all the errors and suggest corrections. An article cannot be perfect when it’s full of errors.
Convincing Closing Paragraph: Your closing paragraph is almost as important as the opening paragraph but both are for different purposes. While you used your opening paragraph to convince the reader to keep reading your article, you can use the closing paragraph to summarize your article and most importantly get them to take an action on your article like share them on the social media, subscribe to your blog, leave a comment, buy your product or even return to your blog again.
This is the final component of your article and one you must ensure to use to get your readers to take an action. This is the place where you can convince a visitor to come back to your blog again which is the main reason for writing this article.
Now over to you…
I hope I have been able to structure a perfect article here explaining the best ways to create a perfect article. I hope I have been able to show you how you can write a perfect blog post.
What do you think of this article? What are your challenges of structuring a perfect article? Share your opinions and contributions via the comments.
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