Listicles are everywhere! Many readers love to browse through these lists daily. You can find them everywhere, from major websites (think Buzzfeed) to local newspapers. How to write the best listicles for your page? Here are the top 10 tips for creating a listicle that everyone will want to read.
What Is a Listicle?
As you may have guessed, a listicle is any type of content formed into a list. Many of the articles are divided into sections with numbered subheadings. You might see a “Top 10 List of Dog Jokes” or “5 Ways To Treat Your Pet.”
At any given time, you can find hundreds of listicles on the internet. Listicles have quickly become one of the most popular types of written digital content.
People love listicles because the information is presented in a format that is easy to read and understand.
Now that you know about the basics of a listicle, here are some tips for creating that perfect one for your website.
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1 – Choose a Topic That Belongs in a List
Will your topic translate to a list? Can that information be converted and broken down into several discrete points? If the answer is yes, then you can write a title for your topic.
If you have a more narrative piece, it could be time to skip the listicle and just tell your story in a typical format.
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2 – Match Your Title With Your List
Your list should make sense. You don’t want to write about “9 Surprising Benefits of Owning a Dog” and then write about the great qualities of cats. It is vital to make sure that the listicles flow from one section to another. Otherwise, it might seem like the piece was written by two different people, and that will make your site look amateurish.
For those who are creating many listicles, try to make unique titles for each one. After a while, the subjects may seem the same, but you need an individual title to keep the content fresh and engaging.
3 – Don’t Write Clickbait
Want to drive off your readers? Then continue to write those clickbait titles for your listicles. Not only do they look bad, but your site could get a reputation as spammy. You need to avoid any of these issues, especially if you want to be the source of high-quality content and establish yourself as an authority on certain subjects.
4 – Hook the Reader’s Attention With a Compelling Title
One of the simplest things that you can do is create a compelling title. In their true essence, lists are shareable, and you want a title that will capture the reader’s attention.
So how do you write a great title? First, you need to start with declarative, short sentences. Along with that, don’t tell your reader everything in the title. Let them have a little curiosity as they continue to click on your listicle.
You never want to overpromise. Stay away from anything that includes “One Weird Trick” or “X Will Shock You.” Those titles are clickbaity. Finally, you always want to highlight your content’s strengths. Your title will sell your listicle. Make it exciting for your readers.
5 – Surprise Your Readers
When you write in the list format, it pulls in the reader. You should use a sense of progression as the reader moves through the article.
Remember that the average reader has a short attention span. Don’t overwhelm them with long sentences and large paragraphs.
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6 – Create a Scannable List
What sets listicles apart from other forms of content? Their scannability. Imagine creating a listicle that is five pages long without any headers or bullet points. That is extremely hard to read, and it will turn away most of your audience.
A great listicle can summarize a point in two to three sentences. If you are writing a paragraph, keep them relatively short. Bold those important words, and break up huge chunks of text.
Want to set yourself apart? Strategically insert images into certain areas of your listicles. You will want to make sure that they are relevant to your list.
7 – Pick the Right Number
What number to pick? Some people have suggested writing lists with odd numbers, while others have applauded those with solid prime numbers. However, in many cases, the number ten seems to be the most popular choice. Depending on your information, you need to find the ideal number for your list, whether you are writing about exciting travel spots or popular dog breeds.
8 – Go Big or Go Home
Now that you have your golden number, how many words to write? If you want to do it well, then swing for those fences. In most long-format lists, the average length is over 1,000 words. However, Moz concluded in an exhaustive study that content with over 2,000 words performed better.
9 – Choose Your Content
Listicles can be anything that you want. You can share your favorite dining spots, rank the best Star Wars characters, or simply provide tips to motivate others. Listicles that provide some type of valuable information to the reader will keep them coming back to your page.
10 – Write a Strong Ending
Like a strong introduction, you want to find a great ending. You don’t need to end with “in conclusion,” but tailor it to your listicle’s needs.
With these 10 tips, you will be creating listicles that everyone will want to read.
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