Do you want to increase your content readability score in WordPress by following a few simple steps then we have got your back? In this blog, we will show you how to make your content easier to read and understood by visitors to increase the value of your blog. Fresh, simple, and easy-to-understand content play a strong part in building your brand audience and fetching you more subscribers. By incorporating the right tools and knowledge within your content you will be able to increase the readability score of your blog by many folds. We have combined some of the best tested and proven ways to help you write readable and durable content in WordPress.
What is a Readability Score in WordPress?
Let us begin by shedding some light on this concept; the readability score represents how effective a piece of reading is. It also tells us about the user response which has a deep impact on your site’s performance in the long run. Sadly, WordPress does not provide an in-built readability score feature but you can add this much-needed feature by using an SEO plugin. In this tutorial, we will be using All-in-One SEO (AIO SEO) as our SEO tool because this plugin provides an efficient content readability analysis feature.
1. Install and Activate All in One SEO (AIO SEO)
All-in-one SEO (AIO SEO) is an incredibly powerful SEO plugin that will never do you wrong. This tool is specially designed to help users create well-optimized pages and posts. There are many ways in which this tool serves your purpose for instance it improves your content readability which is our main agenda in this blog. It is better to opt for the premium (paid) version of the AIO SEO license as it comes with a smart collection of SEO features that can pave your way to successful content. However, you can always test out the free version to analyze your content readability score in WordPress. The choice is solely yours to make!
To get started right away, you need to download this plugin from the official AIO SEO website. Then click on the ‘Install’ button followed by activation on your WP account. Once you are done with this step now you simply have to trigger the setup wizard.
You will be asked to enter some important details like social media profiles, logos, business contact, address, and other information. Simply enter all these details in their respective sections to move to the next step.
2. Access All in One SEO, AIOSEO’s Readability Analysis Tool
Once the plugin is successfully installed and activated, you will experience a new module whenever you edit your post or page.
Open up a page or a post, and you need to navigate towards the section marked as ‘Page Analysis’; in this section, click on the ‘Readability’ area as shown below:
You will come across a checklist of all the items that contribute to the betterment of content readability score. If you have well-optimized content, then these items will be checked in green, and the items marked in red are the ones that make up the readability issues on this checklist.
3. Organize your Writing in Subheadings
It doesn’t matter if you are writing content for your post or page, headings and sub-headings must be an integral part of your content. Through these headings and sub-headings, the search engine learns more about your content topic. On the other hand, adding them makes your writing look more organized and scannable for readers, so they can easily get to the solution to their problem.
There is a predefined rule that you should try to limit your sub-heading to less than a 300-word count, If in any case, if you exceed this limit, then this tool will give a red check. Here are some heading structure principles that you can use to format your content for a better readability score:
H1 heading represents the title of the post in general, you must never use this title within your text.
H2 headings should mention the demarcation of the major sections of your post.
H3 headings should be used to create all your subheadings under an H2 header.
H4 headings and lower should be used seldomly. Although this is no compulsion if you are writing under the H4 heading, then it is one of the many signs that your writing is too complex.
4. Write Simply For an 8th Grade Reader [Use Flesch Reading Ease Feature]
Your reader is busy as a bee you might want to take as little time as possible. In this world of never-ending content from your competitors, you can not afford to make your post too complex. This will probably cost you your valuable readers turned customers. Therefore, alongside making your content scannable for readers, your online writing must be readable and digestible for a layman. AIO SEO has a dedicated feature to measure this content aspect called the “Flesch Reading Ease”.
The very basic rule is to write in a manner that is easy to grasp for an 8th grader. To achieve this scale this feature should be between 60 to 70 which is a good score for any piece of writing. Here are a few more tips to get things right the first time:
Write shorter sentences and one or two paragraphs.
Express your concept in easy words as much as possible.
Avoid making use of flowery language or technical terms.
Do not use unnecessary adjectives and adverbs.
Abiding by these rules while writing your content can be a great starting point for your topic, but there is more to this subject and we will cover it in the next few steps.
5. Optimize Sentence and Paragraph within 3-4 Lines Length
Earlier we mentioned the use of headers in aligning your content and making it scannable. Another simple way is to use shorter length sentences and paragraphs. The shorter the sentence or paragraph the easy it is to reduce a reader’s perception of content complexity. We recommend staying between 20 words or less in case of writing sentences and 3 to 4 lines while writing a paragraph.
All-In-One SEO will result in a content readability error if your content sentences are above 20 words in length. If by any chance this happens then you can always split a sentence into two or convey your message in fewer words.
6. Use the Active Voice More Often
Always use an active voice in your content because it makes your content more engaging and helps bring a lot more clarity to your ideas. If you use a higher percentage of active voice sentences then you can bring down the ambiguity level of your content. A good practice is to include one or two passive voice sentences for every ten written in active voice. This will help you maintain a good ratio of your content and make it look well-balanced.
In case you are not sure about the difference between passive voice and active voice, then here is a quick reminder:
In active voice sentences, the sentence subject plays a vital role. However, passive voice is said to be the reverse of active voice, where the subject of the sentence matter is presented passively. Here is an example:
Sentence 1 (Active): Josh wrote the article.
Sentence 2 (Passive): The article was written by Josh.
7. Use Transition Words Abundantly
Transition words are also helpful in writing easy content. They are used to connect sentences and phrases. Common transition words are ‘and’, ‘but’, ‘because’, ‘therefore’ and others. These words tend to allow readers to experience how ideas go together to make a whole concept.
However, you do not need to incorporate transition words in every sentence, you can keep the ratio to about 1 in every 3 sentences. At this point, we have covered around 90% of our blog; we are now down to our final tip, which is to give readers short breaks by including short videos or images within your work. Read on to the next point to see how this works!
8. Add Video or Images to Break-up Your Text
This is a very amazing trick to enhance your content user engagement and readability score. All you need to do is to break your content into long walls of text with gifs, images, or videos that best illustrate your ideas and contribute to the point that you are trying to make in your text.
Images are useful tools in themselves to improve your content readability score within seconds. These elements contribute to your content prestige and enable you to get across even the most technical ideas in the simplest manner. If your images captivate your readers, then they take the much-needed break and spend more time on your blog post instead of jumping to your competitor’s content.
Always make sure to enter a good amount of vibrant images or any other visual aid to help bring your content to life. And this is how you can improve your content readability score in WordPress!