More often than not, UX writing is not given that much attention in brand building. The words used in digital experiences are written by different people, from developers to designers; and in different ways, at different times, without any centralised pattern.
So sometimes the language can get a little confusing. Sometimes it loses consistency from one page to the nest. Sometimes it can get robotic when it should be conversational, excited when it should be calm. And this is not a rare thing. Most design teams do not work with UX writers when building their products.
A good understanding of UX writing can be essential in creating better digital experiences. If the language and words in your product are uninspiring, complex, and unfriendly, it reflects poorly on your product as well. That is why it is important and necessary to follow clear, concise and friendly words and language structure in your products.
To help your designers, engineers and product owners can effortlessly write clear and useful copies of their experiences, we have compiled here a few UX writing guidelines and principles. So, without further delay, let’s dig into it.
Keep it conversational
One of the most important principles to focus on in UX writing is to approach with a conversational tone. The words in the products are there to generate a conversation between the users and the product. So, make sure you write in the same manner as you would speak to another human being.
Use simple English
Writing in plain and simple English makes it easier to read your content. It also makes it more accessible and easier to understand. We need to understand and differentiate the language that our product teams use amongst themselves, and the language our users will use for themselves every day. It is probable that in UX writing, complicated and technical words creep into our products descriptions. But, try to avoid that as much as possible, keeping the mind the user readability of the product.
Follow consistent language patterns across platforms
Inconsistent visual patterns can confuse users, and it is the same with inconsistent language in our interactions. Framing an experience with the same terms and phrases can help the users in understanding, especially in a repetitive experience.
We have already mentioned this. But it is worth repeating. In UX writing, try to be as concise as possible. Which means using as few words as possible, and without losing the meaning of the actual message. To achieve that, after writing, as yourself if every word you have written serves a purpose. If not, then remove everything that is not giving the reader a piece of new or important information.
Address the users clearly
When talking directly to the readers, it is important to use ‘you’ or ‘your’ instead of ‘I’ or ‘my’. Such words can build trust and an understanding with the users, while words like ‘my’ can easily confuse people.
Try to write in the present tense
In UX writing, always try to use the present tense and an active voice. It makes our sentences shorter and easier to understand. Past and future tenses, also passive voices can force users to read additional words for the same point.
Lead with the most important information
Most readers who use your product/service do not read every work on a page. Instead, they prefer scanning for information that is useful and relevant to them. That is why it is important to present the most important words at the beginning of your UX writing. Making the message much easier to scan, you help users quickly find the information they need. It also helps reduce the friction between the products and users.
Following these tips in your UX writing can put you in the right direction to build better conversations with your readers and users. These conversations can help you design and build effective digital experiences for your customers.
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