You see articles everywhere you go, whether on the internet or somewhere outside, and on a variety of topics or subjects. Articles serve very basically, yet important purposes, of which education and imparting knowledge are the most important. A large proportion of the articles you see provide you key information on an event, narrate an incident, share opinions on an issue, or just any other topic in general, such as on the working of the Parliament, how to make a smoothie, and just about any other topic. Besides being aimed at discussing something in-depth, articles often seek to clear doubts and queries. With the internet being accessible to almost everyone, people often use it to seek tips or answers to different questions, or to clarify any doubts they may have regarding almost anything, such as how to apply for a particular visa, which is the best college or university for Engineering, etc.
When talking about articles and what purpose they serve, it is important to understand the process of article writing, which is, as the name suggests, the act of preparing an article for a specific cause or on a particular topic, meant to address a certain section of the population, also known as the target audience. Since articles are more or less meant to be informative, there are a certain set of steps that lead up to the actual act of writing. A writer must ensure that the contents of the article are laid out in a particular manner so that it sends across the exact message it intended to in the first place and resonates with its target audience.
As mentioned above, articles must be well planned and executed for the people to actually read them and for them to also continue reading other works by the same writer. Here are ten tips to make sure that you only create the perfect article:
- Research is Key: Most of the articles you see provide useful information or details on a particular topic, issue, or area and thus it is imperative that you make it a point to do thorough research on the said subject matter. You need to be able to include every detail you can find on the topic and that can only happen if you have extensively researched it and have collected information from a wide variety of sources. For instance, if you are supposed to write an article on the causes and effects of global warming, it is of utmost importance that you discuss a number of points under each category. You can really sense the tone of the article by the first few lines, and the reader might be actively discouraged from reading any further they feel you have not really mentioned any concrete points and were only beating around the bush.
- Check your Facts: One of the most important factors to consider when writing an article is to make sure it is credible, especially if it is meant to be factual. If you are writing on a specific topic, you must ensure that everything you mention in the article is legitimate and not made up or based on conjectures. Creating an article which contains false information is highly unprofessional and can mislead the readers. The only way your article can be a plausible source of information is if the topic is thoroughly researched. Without referring to multiple sources, collecting all the relevant information and corroborating it, you cannot create an authentic piece of writing. In the event that the details you have managed to compile are merely based on conjecture, it is important that you do mention the same in your article. Also, in most cases, you must make sure to cite the sources of your information so the readers can verify the details if they wish to.
- Organize your Thoughts: It is not a pleasant experience if the readers need to put in a lot of effort into figuring out what you have written or into connecting different points. When writing an article on a particular topic, you must mention similar points together and must maintain a proper chain of thought; you shouldn’t write just about anything at any given point in the article because the idea suddenly came to you. You must create a sequence, so the readers don’t end up spending more time deciphering the article and less time actually imbibing the content. The best way to go about this is to jot down the points or details to be cited and to create a rough framework of the article.
- Create a Rough Draft: As mentioned in the previous point, when writing an article, it is of utmost importance that you properly communicate an idea; that you present the points in such a way that is easy to comprehend. The readers should not have to try and associate one point with the other. Article writing requires a plan, and one thing you can do to avoid creating confusion is preparing a rough draft. Lay down the basic structure of the article and try to put all the important details or headers in a particular order, so your task of writing the actual article becomes much smoother.
- Pay Attention to the Grammar: One of the most crucial points to keep in mind when writing an article is to keep a check on the grammar. Having to navigate through multiple spelling, grammatical, or punctuation errors is tiresome and can discourage readers from continuing any further. Also, slight changes in the placement or words, or the usage of a particular verb can completely alter the meaning of the content. Always reread the article to correct any such errors or put it through a grammar checker online.
- Check for Plagiarism: Your content must be a hundred percent original and must not check positive for plagiarism at all. When borrowing information from a website or even a book, always try to read the text, understand what it says, and then rewrite it in your own words. Sometimes, when you have to mention facts or even need to rewrite a small sentence, it can be very difficult to paraphrase it, but you must not copy it as it is. If your article comes up as being plagiarised, you could get copyrighted and your article would be taken down. To avoid such a situation, always put your articles through a plagiarism checker before you actually send it forward or publish it, there are many available online (both free and paid).
- Stick to the Word Limit and Do Not Beat Around the Bush: It is quite important to stick to the prescribed word limit when writing an article, especially when it is a formal one. Avoid rambling on about the same thing and do not beat around the bush too much; write to the point. It is acceptable to slightly go off-topic or to mention a few additional details along the way, depending upon the purpose of the article and the exact audience it is aimed at. If it is a very formal article, avoid straying and cite only the necessary points. Having to read an exceptionally long article becomes tedious and mundane, and readers are much more likely to leave the article mid-way if it drags on too long.
- Change the Language According to the Purpose of the Article and Intended Audience: Again, the reason behind writing the article and the people it is meant for should determine the language and tone. Some articles require you to be highly professional, use certain words and terms, avoid abbreviations, and construct the article in a particular way. On the other hand, when it comes to informal articles or articles simply meant to clear doubts, convey a message or recount an incident, you have the liberty of using casual language, short forms and making them more personal. Make sure to fully understand the intentions behind the article before you begin writing it so you can use the appropriate language and tone.
- Use Headers and Highlights: Besides the actual content of the article, what attracts the readers is the presentation. So, you need to carefully plan out your article and put in appropriate headings, subheadings, underline or embolden the keywords, highlight key phrases, change the font size and style, etc. Not only would this keep the readers engaged and interested, but it would also make it much easier to find particular words/ sentences or to go over only the relevant information, categorized under different headings.
- Proofreading is Indispensable: No matter how confident you are with the piece you have just formulated, you cannot ignore this step. You have to, without fail, go over the entire article at least twice so you can correct any errors you might have made. It is easy to miss incorrect punctuation or a misspelled word, and these errors could prove to be troublesome, especially once the article is published. Make sure to not just go over the grammatical aspect of it but also to corroborate the facts.
Since articles have become a major part of how companies and brands market their products and services, it is highly important that they are formulated the right way. The article would serve no real purpose if it does not adequately address the issue at hand or isn’t structured properly. There are many article writing services available that know how to write just the perfect article to cater to the requirements for diverse content.