The basics of writing for mobile

BBC Academy offers a useful introductory guide to writing for mobile.

It includes these tips:

  • Make every word count.Cellphone on site, blurry background, Unsplash, Thom Weerd
  • Remember SEO, especially in the headline.
  • Make sure the lead gets to the point of the story.
  • Tell the story in four paragraphs. That’s a rule BBC follows for its website. Stories can go longer, but a reader should have a good grasp of the story after four paragraphs.
  • Use subheads and links.
  • Use tables to cut down on words.
  • Get the story out quickly, as people check their phones a lot.

There’s nothing revolutionary here. INMA offered similar advice earlier this year, as have others before (see below). It’s a good reminder of how we need to think differently for a mobile audience, though.

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About dbward

Doug Ward is an associate professor of journalism at the University of Kansas.
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