Lesson 10: Readability and the Yoast SEO plugin – SEO for beginners training

By | August 6, 2019


The readability of your posts is a key factor
for a holistic SEO strategy. We’ve already told you about holistic SEO and how important it is
that you write quality content. Quality content of course needs to be
original and relevant to your readers, but it should also be easy to read. Let me first tell you what we mean when
we talk about content that’s easy to read. I’ll then explain why readable content
is extremely important. So what makes a text readable? First of all, a readable text is a text
that is well structured. It should have an introduction,
a body in which you convey your message, and a conclusion. Within this bigger structure,
the text needs to be divided up further into paragraphs that reflect your ideas
and arguments. These paragraphs need to be preceded
by subheadings that clearly state the content
of each paragraph. Furthermore, make sure to start each
paragraph with a topic sentence. The topic sentence is the most important
sentence of that paragraph. It will give the reader an idea
of what the whole paragraph is about. All following sentences in the paragraph
will then elaborate on that topic sentence. In addition to these structural elements
of your text, you also should consider stylistic elements. Your text should be pleasant to read. So whether it comes to your choice
of words or sentence structures, go for short and clear
rather than long and convoluted. Write sentences that are not too long and
which are clearly marked by transition words. Transition words are words such as
“in contrast”, “additionally”, or “therefore”. These words give your readers direction
when reading your text. Finally, don’t go overboard
with complicated terminology. Don’t stuff your sentences with long,
hard to read words when you can also use simpler words
to achieve the same effect. So as you can see, text structure and style are things that you need to think about
on multiple levels of your text. But why is it that readability is so important
for your SEO strategy? Well, most importantly, you really want
to focus on your audience and their reading experience. You want to write an article that is
well structured and pleasant to read. You want your readers to understand
the message of your post quickly and without too much effort. That way, you will not only entice readers to click through from the search results
to your website, but they’ll also be more likely
to stay on your website. Making a text more readable is not about
dumbing down your content. It’s about making your posts
as accessible as possible. It’s about avoiding unnecessary complexity
in your writing. You can still tackle complex issues
in your posts, but it’s part of the writer’s job – your job –
to break down complex ideas and make them clear
and easy to understand. Additionally, it’s important
that your text is scannable. For this, think about
your own reading behavior on the web. When you look up something on Google, you’ll probably open a couple of the pages
that come up and quickly scan them
to get a general idea of your search results. So you really want to be able
to see at a glance what a text is about. Splitting up a text into paragraphs
that are preceded by subheadings makes it easy for your readers to decide whether or not they would like to read
your article, or which parts they want to read. The same goes for topic sentences. People tend to read the first sentence
of every new paragraph as they’re scanning through the text. So make sure to incorporate these elements to make your content
easily scannable for your readers. And then there’s also
Google’s ranking algorithm to consider. Google is becoming smarter and smarter
in how it evaluates websites. To determine the topic of a page, it will make use of some of the same factors
that human readers use. For example, it will pay attention
to the headings and subheadings to determine the topic of a page. Similarly, voice search is becoming
more and more important. When you use voice search on your phone
or on Google Home for example, you might get a spoken result
for your search term. In that case you don’t want to have to listen
to extremely long sentences. If clarity is important when reading a text, it’s even more important
in order to grasp a spoken message. I hope that I’ve been able to convince you that it’s crucial to write texts
that are easily readable. Readability really ranks. That’s why we’ve added
a readability analysis in our plugin. This analysis consists
of various assessments that will check the structure of your text as well as various elements
of your writing style. We give you feedback with green, red,
and orange bullet points that will point you to the areas of your text
that could still use some improvement. That way, you can be sure
you’ve got all the important points covered when it comes to the readability
of your text.

2 thoughts on “Lesson 10: Readability and the Yoast SEO plugin – SEO for beginners training

  1. Sally Harding Post author

    Hello. The course is very helpful. Why is Yoast so difficult to use with Elementor?

    Reply

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