How Is It Different from Other Forms of Writing?
The main difference is that UX writing is focused on the user.
UX writing is usually shorter and simpler than other forms of writing. This is because people do not want to read long paragraphs of text on a website. They want to find the information they need quickly and easily.
With UX writing, the user always comes first. The content must be useful and relevant to them, and also provide clarity.
In addition to this, UX writing must be consistent across the entire website. This means that the tone of voice, style of writing, and overall message must be the same on every page. This can be a challenge for companies that have different people working on different parts of their website. However, it is essential to maintain a consistent user experience.
Now we will compare UX writing to two other forms of writing: copywriting and SEO writing. Although there are similarities in the way – as they are all written in some ways for the user – they have key differences.
Copywriting is designed to provide information for the user. It tends to be long-form and often useful for product descriptions and news items.
The idea of copywriting is to give the user enough information to either…
- make an informed decision about a purchase,
- help them form an opinion about something, like a news story.
Substantial amounts of information is key for copywriting, whereas short directional text that aids user navigation is key to UX writing.
The key goal of SEO writing is to construct copy that allows crawlers – like the Googlebot – to easily understand a page so that it can rank well on search engines.
Given that there is an increasing amount of Google algorithm updates that are relevant to providing a good user experience, the user is also a central focus of SEO writing as search engines. This is exemplified by updates such as:
In fact, we have extensively covered this topic in our article on UX vs SEO.
Similar to copywriting, SEO writing tends to be in medium or long form. It is about providing quality information to search engines and the user by using good grammar, clear headings, authoritative links, quality images, and so on.
The primary difference between UX writing and SEO writing is that – in some unique cases – good UX goes against good SEO. For example, non-descriptive links/anchor text do not help bots understand the destination of that link. However, the user will find a “LEARN MORE” button much more useful/instructive than an “SEO AUDIT” button without any context.