I’m an oddly huge fan of thesaurusus (or is it thesauri?). I remember spicing up my essays in school with the help of synonyms and still use them regularly to stop myself repeating the same words ad nauseam.
What I find interesting though, is that when I blog, I write very simply. Living in the geeked-out digital world of abbreviations, acronyms and initialisms, of big words with even bigger meanings, I quickly learned the simpler I can make something the better my chances of being understood (and of getting a sale).
Like Einstein said:
If you can’t explain it simply, you don’t understand it well enough.
There’s a lot to be said for simplifying the complicated.
If you want more readers – whether it’s for your latest Facebook update, keeping people on your website instead of someone else’s, or for your next blog article – explaining yourself as simply as possible increases readability, helping you attract and keep more visitors on your site.
With so much information on other websites just a click away, you want to keep your reader’s attention until they reach your desired goal, whether that be great-converting website copy that persuades a lead to get in touch, a well-written tweet or Facebook update that gets engagement or – like me – a blog article that makes people want to share it.
Using big words might make you feel intelligent but it can just end up making your readers feel dumb
Which brings me to a fancy name for an excellent free readability tool I’ve just found this week that I had to share: the Flesch Kincaid readability test. The link to the test is below.
This test will tell you how complicated your prose is to understand. The higher your Flesch Reading Ease and the lower your Flesch Kincaid Grade Level, the more your readability improves. The results of the free test below also explain what these two tests mean.
So pick a URL – maybe a page on your website, or a blog article you’re sure should be performing better – and run it through this free readability test >
I’ll hazard a guess that this particular article is going to score worse than usual for me, as I’m peppering it rather too liberally with longer, more complex words than normal. I blame thesaurus.com
So how do you score?
PS: Before you go, if you found that free tool of value, please consider sharing this article with your network. Thank you 🙂