Table of Contents
- What is a Listicle?
- Why Should You Learn to Write a Listicle?
- Tips on how to Write the Best Listicle
- Examples of Brilliant Listicles
- Key Takeaways
In a digital world dominated by blogs and articles, a listicle is something that people tend to gravitate towards. In today’s time, people search anything and everything on Google, from something as simple as ‘How to cook an egg?’ to something as complex as ‘How to make intelligent financial investments?’.
Turning to search engines for advice is very common now. People want solutions to their problems as quickly as possible. This also means that there are millions of people trying to make their way into this digital space via their blogs and articles. Now, if you want your writing to stand out, learn how to write a good listicle by using some of the tips on how to write a listicle provided below. Before that, you must have an understanding of what a listicle is.
What is a Listicle?
So, what is a listicle after all? There is a strong probability that you have already read some listicles. Listicles are simply those articles that are written following a structure. A good listicle is like an elaborate list.
For example, you want to know how to start eating healthy. You Google it, and several articles come up. You will go for the one which seems the most relevant and appealing to you. If there’s a choice between the below-mentioned titles which one will you choose?
- An article titled ‘4 ways to start eating healthy’.
- Or, one that is titled ‘How to start eating healthy?’
Of course, you will go for the first one. People neither have the time nor the attention span to go for articles that do not give the sense that they are easy and quick to read. This is what a listicle is. It is an article written in a list format. This format consists of several pointers. The pointers may be short and crisp or elaborate with paragraphs. They are quick to read and simple in their approach.
How to write listicles? A listicle can be made on various entertaining or informative themes. It provides several ways through which you can make your case, give an explanation about something or sell a service or a product.
Why Should you Learn to Write a Listicle?
Now that you understand what a listicle is, in all probability, you will be able to answer this question with ease. Still, if there are some doubts about why you should write a listicle, keep reading.
Listicles give the audience what they expect
Listicles are popular because listicle writing is attractive and easy to read. It fits in today’s fast-paced world where people don’t have the time to read long-form articles to get a small piece of information. One of the biggest advantages of listicle writing is that the listicle title will indicate what you can expect to gather from an article.
It is well-known that people love lists and tend to be more attracted to them. Although the internet now is flooded with listicles and people are becoming sick of them, they still have a better standing than a simple article.
A good listicle breaks down information
How to write a good listicle? Listicles have the edge over other articles because they break down a large blob of information into pointers. People do not prefer reading an article with a very long, convoluted title. They also don’t like to read a piece of writing that does not give them the specific information about the topic they are looking for.
It is extremely difficult to navigate a complex article that is not structured properly. Especially when someone wants to derive some value from it and learn about something. For a complex topic to get through, it must be written in a way that it can be understood completely. From basics to every important piece of information, everything must be included so that people are clear about what you just tried to convey. Hence, you must know what makes a listicle tick before writing a listicle.
Listicles are easy to read
Often, reading an article can seem like a big task. Articles don’t usually have subheaders and pointers. Therefore, they can be difficult to read. Listicles are naturally easy to skim through with headers, sub-headers, and pointers. Usually, these articles come with a table of contents and key takeaways. So, if you feel like you can’t afford to go through an intimidating article, you can always go for listicles. That’s why listicle writing can prove beneficial.
9 Tips on How to Write A Good Listicle
Here are a few tips on producing a listicle that everyone would love to read.
1. Follow a format
Formatting and listicle writing go hand in hand. Following a format is a base point of how to write a listicle. The essence and success of a good listicle both lie in its format. A listicle is easy to read because it is written in a format. Starting with basics and then smoothly coming to the point makes a great listicle. Your listicle format should check all the boxes like it must have pointers and headers along with other necessary sections as per the requirement of your topic.
To illustrate a listicle example, let’s assume that a listicle needs to be written on the topic ‘4 ways to write an effective cold email’. Start with making a list of what you will have to include in this write-up. In this case, you will have to create a comprehensive guide that includes all the steps to create a cold email. You will create headers and subheaders which will cover all the important details.
2. Have a catchy title
Creating catchy titles is a very important element of listicle writing.
It is a well-known fact that titles are of utmost importance when writing any kind of article. The title will be the first thing that will convince a reader to go ahead and click on a listicle. It is the face of a listicle. While writing a listicle, consider that the title will appear first. People go to Google or other search engines to know more about something. Keep in mind what kind of title will compel people to open a particular listicle. Make the title as specific as possible so that people grasp relevant information. Keep it crisp and catchy.
Don’t give away everything in the title
Creating a compelling title can be tricky. You must create a catchy title for good listicle writing but don’t just give away everything in the title itself. Leave it open-ended, invoking a sense of curiosity in the reader. Nobody will read a listicle that talks about something obvious and are titled vaguely. A well-thought-out listicle title will be tempting but will not give away everything.
Misleading title is a big NO
Writing titles that exaggerate can be disastrous. Be accurate and factually correct. For example, you cannot write a listicle titled ‘Make a website in a minute by following these 5 steps’. If you want to write a good high-quality listicle, be accurate. It’s not that hard to do your homework and create a title that one can digest. Don’t make impractical promises under the name of a catchy title.
3. Write a scannable listicle
Listicles are supposed to follow a format, which therefore makes them skimming-friendly.
A few things to keep in mind include highlighting important keywords to catch the reader’s eye.
Also, plan the listicle out in a way that the chronology makes sense. This implies that the placement of the subtopics must be accurate. Decide the flow of your listicle and take up the subtopics accordingly.
You will also have to write the subtopics so that if the reader wants just to scan the text, they can. If you decide to go for paragraphs, make sure they are short, crisp, and relevant. Make longer paragraphs and get ready to lose readers. Keep in mind that you have to give the reader what they want in the most precise way possible.
4. Have the optimum number of pointers
Pointers give listicle writing an edge over other types of article writing. Hence, decide how many pointers and headers are included in your listicle.
The prime objective of your listicle must be to provide high-quality content. There are many studies out there that will advise you to keep pointers or headers up to a certain number. For instance, some propose to keep the number of pointers a prime number.
Although some data support these facts, it is not absolute. You can, of course, customize your listicle to deliver high-quality content. What will be the point of writing a listicle with 19 redundant headers, just because 19 is a prime number. If the chosen topic can have at best eight pointers, then go for it. There’s no need to compromise on content just to keep the number of pointers prime.
5. Here’s how to choose a listicle topic
The topic on which you can create your listicle must be relevant for listicle writing. Sure, listicles are flexible when it comes to topics and themes. You can play around with different genres. But, not every topic is apt for listicle writing.
A listicle requires a topic that can be bifurcated with as much ease as possible. As mentioned above, one of the perks of a listicle is that they help you consume information easily. Go for topics that you can elaborate on from scratch. Do not be vague and try to be specific when it comes to a topic.
6. Take keywords into consideration
While you write your listicle, you must take care of the relevant keywords. This is to increase the readability. If you practice blog, article, and listicle writing frequently, you must be aware of search engine optimization (SEO).
This helps your write-up to achieve more visibility in a very competitive world. The more the keywords, the more likely it will be ranked higher in the list of sites that come up on the respective search engine after the search. There are various excellent keyword research tools available, like Google Keyword Planner. These can be used to locate a keyword that will bring about a reasonable quantity of traffic.
7. Keep an eye on the competitors
After you have decided on a keyword, the next step is to research the topic’s competitiveness. For example, use Google to search for your term or topic and see which results are now at the top of the page.
By reviewing these results, you will discover what kind of information your audience is looking for when they Google a topic. You can also ascertain the quantity and quality of content you will need to gain substantial traffic.
The digital space is full of content, and listicle writing is becoming more and more popular as we enter 2022. Hence, to make your own space here, you will have the edge over your competitors.
8. Take one-of-a-kind approach
You must be aware of the fact that thousands of people are writing listicles. Given its advantages, it’s almost impossible not to write a listicle in today’s world. This also means that if you want the reader to read your listicle and ignore others, you will have to take a one-of-a-kind approach.
Pour a considerable amount of thought into what you want to convey. Usually, listicles break down some kind of informative topic. They are usually written to give guidance. Therefore, if your listicle is to have a chance to make it on its own in this tough content world, it must have a unique approach.
9. Give the readers a closure
Concluding a listicle can be a task. Often endings are neglected in listicle writing. People usually assume that readers do not read the conclusion of a listicle. It’s a natural assumption given the fact that most people skim listicles. Still, do not neglect the ending. Well-written endings will clear things up and set all the information in the right context.
Best Listicle Article Examples
Below are some hypothetical examples for a good listicle:
1. “5 ways to spot early signs of arthritis”
Such listicles will lure more and more people because people usually like to be cautious of future illnesses. Besides, note that this narrows the broad topic of signs of arthritis and gives specific information.
2. “8 Types of readers: What’s your type?”
This is a great listicle title with a very engaging theme. Personalized and interactive listicle writing will bring about results and traffic in huge amounts. After all, people tend to be attracted to know what kind of things they are into. There’s a certain pleasure that comes from knowing quirky things about oneself. Hence, naturally, such listicles tempt people.
3. “6 Financial hacks that you must know”
The word ‘must’ evokes a sense of urgency. It tempts readers to know more about the imperative hacks listed in the listicle. Such listicles bring a lot of traffic because they talk about complex subjects in the simplest way possible.
Listicle writing is tricky and has to be approached strategically. Given its advantages, one must not give up writing listicles. Instead, create a good one by following relevant guidelines. Always follow a format and come up with a catchy title. Listicles have the edge over other articles and are written in an easy-to-read format. Just keep the above tips in mind while writing a listicle so that your content always stands out.
- Listicles are structured articles. They are written as per a format that breaks down the chosen topic. In other words, they are just like lists but sophisticated.
- As listicles are written according to a format, they are easy to read. This format includes pointers, headers, and subheaders. People do not have time to read long, elaborate articles with no headers. Everybody skims these days, and this is where listicles rule.
- Titles have the power to stop the reader and lure them into reading more. A boring and basic title is a big no. You will instantly lose a reader. While writing a listicle, choose a title that suits your topic and attracts the reader. So, basically make it interactive, keep it short, and most importantly, open-ended so there is room for curiosity.
- Remember you are not the only one writing listicles. Listicle writing has caught on. So, you will have to take on a unique approach to whatever topic you choose.
Check to see if your article fits the bill of a list format. Make a compelling title for your article that grabs the reader’s attention. This is the best way to go about writing a listicle.
A listicle is a brief piece of writing that employs a list as its thematic structure but is built up with enough material to be published as an article in the digital world.
Listicles provide complex information in a way that the brain can easily process. The brain gets strained by reading vast blocks of text, which necessitate more energy and concentration. Listicles provide mental relief since they need less effort from the brain to process.
The listicle isn’t finished; in fact, it’s only getting started. Don’t assume that it’s dead. Instead, reap the rewards of a good listicle or create your own.
Select the appropriate length; you don’t want users to have to sift through 5,000 words of text to discover what they’re looking for. A listicle should usually be between 1,000 to 2,000 words long. This allows you to convey value without obstructing readers’ ability to skim the text.