When creating your author website, as a writer, you’ll naturally focus on the home page text, your author bio, publication credits, and your books and writing. And these are all very important elements of your website! But at Web Design Relief, our experts know there’s an aspect of website design that many writers overlook: UX writing. UX (User Experience) writing focuses on optimizing a visitor’s website experience by ensuring the text on menus, buttons, widgets, and error messages is clear and concise, making it easy to navigate through every page. Here are tips on how to be the UX writer for your author website by combining your knack for words with technology.
How To Be Your Author Website’s UX Writer
Understand your goals: Before you start UX writing, you should have a clear idea of your author website’s main function. Are you using your website to sell books or to attract the attention of a literary agent? Or are you showcasing your poetry and prose? Is your primary goal to direct visitors to your various social media platforms? Once you have a clear vision of what you want your web pages to do, you can craft UX writing that best guides your audience to those objectives.
Listen to your users: Be open to feedback. Share your author website with friends, family, and your writing group to get their opinions on the user experience. If they report that some of your pages are hard to find or your menus are difficult to use, you can make revisions to ensure the experience is more user-friendly.
Think like a designer: Put yourself into the shoes of a web designer or developer. How would a professional web developer move visitors from one part of a website to another—and where should that text live on the website? Take a look at other websites you like and notice how the designer placed the calls to action. Where is the navigation, and what are the pages titled?
You can also join a UX writing boot camp to learn about the psychology and content style behind effective UX writing for your author website.
Be concise: You’ll need to take off your writer hat and put on your tech hat. UX writing should get directly to the point. While your “writer side” might want to have a button that says “Click here to read my exciting author biography,” your “UX writer side” knows it’s better to just label the button “Biography.” Your audience will understand and get to the information faster.
But be conversational: Although UX writing is for the tech aspects of your author website, it should still read as if it was written by a human and not generated by a bot.
Here’s an example—compare the default error message to a custom message created by a UX writer:
“404: Not Found. The requested URL was not found on this server.”
“Sorry, the page you’re looking for doesn’t exist or has been removed. Click the Home button to return to the home page.”
The robotic default text could be confusing and doesn’t tell the visitor what to do next. The UX example, however, is clear about what happened and what the visitor should do.
By following these tips, your UX writing will help your audience enjoy visiting your author website and keep them coming back for more. But if UX writing doesn’t sound like something you want to tackle on your own, the experts at Web Design Relief can handle it while building you a custom, one-of-a-kind author website! Sign up for a free consultation today!
Question: What’s your favorite example of good UX writing on a website?