This Often Overlooked Aspect of Blogging Matters… A Lot2 min read

I’ll let you in on a little secret about something that that generally only comes to mind as an afterthought, but that can have a significant impact on how well people read, respond, and retain what you have to say.

Want to make your blog posts better? Read on.

It’s All About Usability

We’ve all heard by now that we should never write in ALL CAPS beyond a few words at a time for emphasis. It’s considered “shouting” and a breach of netiquette, and writing in all upper-case letters is also terrible from a usability standpoint.

Writing solely in upper-case reduces the reader’s speed by thirteen percent (13%), because the reader has to take time to distinguish the different characters and then combine them into a word. Further, because all the letters are larger, each letter also takes a fraction longer to see.

Just like letter case impacts reading speed, so does the way you format your text. Text formatting also has an effect on how much of your information the reader will retain.

Formatting includes font type, size, and spacing. Let’s take a look at each.

What Font Type Should I Use?

The answer to this question is subjective and to a large degree depends on your website design, industry standards, and ultimately the type of content you are presenting.

Your content portion should be in serif fonts such as Times New Roman, while your attention and guidepost information (such as titles, subtitles, captions, etc.) should be in a sans serif font like Arial.

What Font Size Should I Use?

In general you should not use anything smaller than a 12-point font, and should allow readers to manually increase the size of a page’s text. The reason for this is because different operating systems display text at different resolution so no matter what size you choose, it will difficult to enforce it so that everyone sees the text in the same way.

According to studies, 12-point Times New Roman and 10-point Arial result in the fastest reading speeds, while both fonts in 12-point result in the most legible text and best overall reading experience for the audience.

What Font Spacing Should I Use?

The spacing you use should vary depending on the letter case you are using as well as the alignment you use for your paragraphs. As I mentioned before, when you type in all upper-case it becomes substantially harder to read because all letters start looking alike. To alleviate this (if you must use all caps), you can increase the spacing between the letters of the word.

Make Your Content Look Better

It’s surprising how many people fail to recognize the importance of formatting as a component of good blogging and content presentation. You painstakingly format your resume when looking for a job, or a dissertation for your professors before you present, right?

So why not take the time to format your online content?

Cristian Mihai

Became Internet famous by the age of 23. Never recovered. I write short author bios all over the web. I’m an acquired taste. Don’t like me? Acquire some taste.

21 thoughts on “This Often Overlooked Aspect of Blogging Matters… A Lot2 min read

      1. All great reminders. I actually picked a main font that’s all caps and have been meaning to change it. Thanks! I’ll add too that breaking text up with relevant images helps me read a blog post faster too.

  1. This advice applies to books, too. Some books have such faint and small fonts that they discourage reading. That’s why large print books are taking off–the reading public has eye strain from computers and other electronic devices, and the larger fonts are “easier on the eyes.” Thanks for tackling this practical subject.

  2. Again, thank you for the information. I am not a professional blogger but I also want to make sure my readers don’t have to strain themselves just to visit my blog. I appreciate all your hard work and thanks again for sharing.

    1. Thank you, Jerry.

      I think that the competition is so fierce in this blogging world that one has to be professional in order to get even a decent amount of readers.

  3. Like you said, this should be a no-brainer, but it’s definitely an easy thing to overlook. I didn’t realize all caps slowed readers down so much. Thanks for sharing.

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