How to present clear and concise content in 6 easy steps

Why write 10 words when 5 will do 🤷‍♀️?

Getting straight to the point with clear and concise content will grip your reader’s attention and help them focus on what you’ve got to say 🔊.

Whether you’re writing captions for products on your website, a social media post or a blog post, having your content be clear and easy to understand is essential.

In this post, we’ll work through the 6 easy steps you can follow to create clear and concise content so that your most important points are crystal 💎 clear and ‘to-the-point’.


Why is being clear and concise important?


It’s tough finding the time to write and your audience is probably struggling to find the time to read everything on their ‘reading list’. We’re all short on time, so why not make it easy for yourself, and your audience, by writing clearly and in as few words as possible?

In a world where time is of the essence, letting your audience know what they're about to read, as quickly as possible, will help them decide if they have time right now.

As they work their way through your content, they want their eyes to be treated to short words and simple sentences. They don’t want to have to think too hard about it 🤔!

6 Tips to being clear and concise in your writing


1. Remove unnecessary words

It’s time to communicate your point with the fewest possible words.

Unnecessary words tend to make sentences longer and more complicated than they need to be.

I mean, honestly, that sentence was a perfect example!

"Unnecessary words make sentences longer than they need to be."

I just removed 5 words from the sentence and it still made sense, right?

Here’s another example:

Needless to say, we won’t be returning to that restaurant.

We won’t be returning to that restaurant.

While both get the point across, you need to think about whether ‘needless to say’ was necessary for getting your point across.

2. Split long sentences

Long sentences often contain several ideas 💭, multiple punctuation marks, and it can be easy for your reader to lose focus. Give the eyes a break and separate your ideas.

If you spot a comma-heavy sentence, you’re probably looking at a sentence with excessive words or multiple ideas.

Every sentence will be different. Have a play around with a few different splits and, ultimately, listen to your gut when choosing what works.

3. Remove redundancies

What is a redundancy? Saying the exact same thing with two words instead of one.

Did you catch the redundant words in that sentence? Exact and same?

Try this:

You don’t need to say the same thing with two words.

A few common redundancies are:

  • Brand new

  • Advanced planning

  • Basic necessities

Some redundancies can slip through because they are separated with ‘and’:

My email was straight-forward and to-the-point.

My email was to-the-point.

4. Avoid jargon

Every profession, and industry, has internal languages but remember, your audience may not be privy to those.

Jargon and buzz words are best avoided as they can confuse and distract your readers.

If you do need to use jargon, ensure you take the time to explain the meaning before diving right in.

Also… don’t forget to fully write an acronym before abbreviating because, again, depending on your field of expertise the acronym could mean different things.

Look at SME as an example:

  • Social media expert

  • Subject matter expert

  • Small-medium enterprise


5. Use positive language

No one likes negative words ❌ and language. Positive writing is more uplifting and means your audience won't feel like they're being told off!

Take my earlier sentence:

Jargon and buzz words are best avoided as they can confuse and distract your readers.

I originally wrote that sentence as:

Jargon and buzz words can harm your writing by making your audience confused and unsure of your point.

I know which one I prefer!

Another example:

You don’t want to make these mistakes in your writing.

Could be adjusted to:

You want to avoid these mistakes in your writing.

It’s very subtle but makes a big difference to your reader’s feelings 😊.

6. Learn about tautology and why they need to be removed

I’m a sucker for a tautology. It’s what Grammarly tells me off for the most 👿!

A tautology is a phrase that repeats the same information. Removing tautology can leave you with a strong and more direct sentence.

Examples:

  • I personally

  • My own

  • The evening sunset

  • Heard with my own ears

  • Short summary

  • Close proximity

So, remember 🤔, having clear and concise content, whether it’s a long blog or a short product description, means your readers will have a much easier time of reading.

By removing excess words, redundancies and tautologies, you are giving your audience less to read (saving them time).

By shortening sentences and explaining jargon terms, you’re making your content easier for your audience to understand.

What next?


Do you love creating your content but don’t have the time, or patience, to ensure it’s as clear and concise as it can be? That’s OK, it’s not everyone’s cup of tea ☕ but it is mine!

You can write without fear and I’ll proof-edit without mercy!

Proof-editing is a relatively new term being used in the editing and proofreading industry. It’s a service that combines the best of both, editing and proofreading, to give you a one-stop service that meets the needs of your content but doesn’t strain the budget 💸.

If this sounds like what you need then proof-editing is a great option for you and it’s time we talked.


Get in touch with me now to arrange your free 'Getting to Know You' call.

©2020 by The Invisible PA