Content writing has changed a lot through the years. The days of keyword stuffing in articles are gone. Online writers know that both users and search engines have become more intelligent in recognizing quality content. And now that mobile marketing is expected to flourish in 2013 and 2014, content writing style is again started to evolve.
There are challenges to overcome in writing content for mobile internet users. Each factor has an effect on user experience, which in turn can affect how they react to your site and brand. Remember that mobile users behave differently from desktop users.
People who access your site through their phones have limited time in their hands. Ryan Matzner of Fueled puts mobile usage as a secondary activity among users. That is, they are busy with other chores and using their smart phones is something they’d do during short time in between primary tasks. In short, you only have a few seconds to answer queries from your target market. Otherwise, they will skim through other pages to look for answers immediately.
Attention : The attention span of mobile users is short. You have to keep things simple from the design of your mobile site and its content. Skip the long introductions and be direct to the point.
Prioritize information : Evaluate what details your target market most likely needs from you. If you were your consumer, what information about your products/services would make you interested? Take for example the mobile site of Panera Bread (found on Mobileawesomeness.com), its home page has a clear list of items that customers need to know about their brand — store branches, menu, and daily specials. With the use of keywords, each food item on their menu is briefly described.
Only relevant words (in this case, ingredients) were mentioned. A dramatic description of the ‘Everything’ bagel would sound like “This is made of soft dough topped with sesame and poppy seeds. It’s complemented by sweet onions and garlic with a dash of kosher salt; delicately baked to perfection.” This content is more descriptive but harder to comprehend, especially for people who are in a hurry. It is also advisable for writers to use tables in organizing details with numbers — such as schedules and price lists — for easier understanding.
Create Teaser Headlines : If you really need to explain your products or services through an article, write interesting titles that will intrigue your customers. Convince your customers that they will get answers to their questions when they read your article further. Avoid using long titles that can confuse readers.
Instead, put together keywords that will cover your main topic. If you are also working on mobile SEO for your site (which I think you should), the keywords in headlines will also help in the searchability of your site and brand in search engines.
Space : You have to keep things basic on your mobile site because it is displayed on a small screen. Your mobile site design and content must work well together. It should be easy for users to navigate through your site. Your site must give answers to search queries within the fewest clicks possible.
If you have a lot of information to share, create a hierarchy of details based on importance (as mentioned above). Put the most essential information on the first page. Content should be concise and details should be written in bulleted lists. Blocks of text may overwhelm your readers and discourage them from reading altogether. Plan the content that you will be putting on pages because based on Useit.com, usability expert Jakob Nielsen explains that:
One thing you can do to conserve space is to create a summary of important details. Explain in 2-3 sentences the purpose of your site or what users can expect from it. Put links that can lead users to detailed articles or pages.
Action : Your content should be actionable. You need to put a strong call to action to encourage your target market to explore your brand further. Better yet, give them choices — do they proceed to buying process? Do they want to find out more (put a link to the full version of your website)? Do they want to share your site or information to a friend? Go straight to the point. Show your customers what you have to offer and ask them to get your services now.
To get your message across, you have to hone your writing skills to the needs of your mobile readers. The key points above can help you come up with your strategies. Your main goal is to come up with content that is short, useful and actionable mobile content that will benefit you and your clients.