UX writing may not strike your mind initially when you think about redesigning your website. You believe in colours, photos, navigations or in-style features. It is often so because the human brain can process visuals better. However, a fantastic website design includes much more than looks. It may not occur to you initially, but working on web copy indeed makes your website engaging.
At Warrington Web Design, we are laser-focused on improving user experience when we develop a new website. Here, in this article, you will find essential tips and strategies to enhance your website design with UX writing.
Let’s find out the meaning of UX writing before we introduce the instructions and strategies.
What Is UX Writing?
UX writing means user experience writing. In simple terms, it is the type of writing that lead users or visitors engaged with a product. It is the form of writing that focuses on microcopy for satisfying user experience. However, UX writing is different from copywriting in that it guides users to know and use a product rather than only persuading them to buy it.
UX writer Lisa Sanchez defines UX writing as:
“UX is the practice of designing the words people see and hear when they interact with software. It’s about designing the conversation between a product and its user.”
UX writing acts as a guide by answering the 5 w’s: WHAT? WHEN? WHERE? WHY? WHO?
And finally helps you HOW to go about it.
Here are some examples of UX writing:
- Call-to-actions (CTAs)
- Navigation menu labels
- Error or Success pages
- Terms and conditions
- Sign up or label forms
- Headings and fine print
- Other microcopy on the web
5 Guidelines For UX Writing
Use simple and easy language
Don’t use the difficult-to-understand language. People from all age groups will visit your website. UX writing is like an easy guide that makes things around them comfortable. It should be understandable for everyone.
Using highly complex language or jargon may sometimes be beneficial for content such as blogs or articles. But, suffice it to say that it is always better to use simple words or language for coverage. Moreover, you need to be brief and to the point when writing CTAs or sign-up forms.
Be a useful user guide.
A useful guide will always direct to the right place with satisfaction. It is crucial to keep in mind to use sentences that grab the user attention.
Remember to keep the microcopy short and allow users to feel that they get something in return.
For example: “Get your free download” or “Click for more.”
The above examples are not only brief and concise, but also easy to understand.
Focus on the writing tone and voice.
A website that uses a writing tone and voice strategy engages with the users and increases branding or sales. It communicates the way an organisation feel about its message, which connects to users. You may have to get a tad bit more creative in this area. Whatever method of writing tone and voice you may choose, maintaining consistency is crucial.
According to Nielsen Norman Group, there are four dimensions of the tone of voice: humour, formality, enthusiasm and respectfulness. Make sure to check that the tone of voice is not out of character for your brand. Keep it consistent and unique.
Some company websites contain unkind robotic messages such as:
“Card declined” or “Authentication failure.”
This kind of texts irks the users and doesn’t reach out to users. It will help if you keep your tone of voice empathetic, consistent and personalised around the user needs.
Be mindful always to test your copy. Check and see if the copy is unnecessarily long or the language used is complicated. Since we live in a continually evolving world, you need to keep checking your website for any changes.
Avoid writing in the passive voice at all times. Write in the active voice and make users feel included.
Improve texts with visual variations
Improve texts by using compatible colour contrast and fonts. Do away with fonts that are too thin against a light background or flashy colour combinations. You can also use beautiful images, catchy infographics or images.
UX writing is all about context. Combining the right visual variations will build users interest and attention.
Make your copy stand out.
The hard truth is that users don’t always read everything you write (even though you have creatively written). So, make your copy scannable at all costs.
Use headings, indent lines, text formats and lists or columns to make your copy stand out. Be sure to use numbers wherever possible.
For instance, 50% stands out more and scannable than fifty per cent.
Importance of UX Writers
It might look like UX writing is a super easy task when we see the text on buttons, menus, pop-ups or error messages. UX writers do a lot more than write and design a digital product. Did you know that they do some severe UX research to understand user needs? They don’t just deliver but take concern for user satisfaction.
Fundamentally, a UX writer’s role is to keep users engaged and design with user interaction as their primary focus. UX designers give value to users, unlike copywriters, who emphasise mainly on selling a product. They fill the gap between users and companies by making users feel understood. People respond better when they are understood and valued.
UX writers optimise website content by adding features, guidelines and applications to the digital product. Their task is not only to write a microcopy but make digital interfaces easy to use.
A UX writer requires skills such as:
- Expertise in prototyping tools such as Sketch, Figma or Adobe XD
- Strong understanding of UX design process
- Good experience in planning and conducting user research and competitor analysis
- Excellent interpretation of data and qualitative feedback
- Professional experience in creating user stories, personas and storyboards
- Establish information architecture and create sitemaps
- Wireframing and prototyping skills
- Efficient in interaction design principles
- Expertise to design company goals and objectives into digital experiences and understanding of business metrics
You can find a myriad of websites offering the same product and service, but users will choose the one that is striking, easy to understand and gives satisfying UX. According to research, a website with a well-designed user experience increase conversion rates up to 400% and improve SEO rankings. Use the proper ways mentioned in this article and expect to earn users trust and credibility with UX writing.