In digital marketing and search engine optimization (SEO), there is a very popular quote of “Content is king.” But is it really true? Shouldn’t the saying specifically be “Good content is king?”
The internet is flooded with so much content on each topic, but SEO algorithms only prioritize the best content that answers the users intent succinctly and precisely. Search engines decide which content should rank for a particular keyword based on the quality, relevance and validity of the content. Let’s say two bloggers write a blog on the same topic and try to rank for the same keyword. Can both be successful in getting the first position?
Google looks at many factors while ranking content. And among all factors, content quality, uniqueness, and readability are prioritized. Even if your website has high-quality backlinks and impressive domain authority if the content is not good enough, it will fail. Creating unique and superior quality content is one thing, but when it comes to readability, many don’t even know how to measure it. For that, there is a metric called Flesch Reading Score. It helps in the same.
Flesch Reading Score is a formula developed by Rudolph Flesch in 1948 to determine the readability of text content. The formula helps in determining what level of education someone will need to read the particular content.
For example, if your content scores between 70 to 80, then it is most likely that someone with a grade six education can read the content. Presently, marketers use it to determine if their content is readable to the majority of their audience. The Flesch Reading Score is based on average words in a sentence multiplied by 1.015 + average syllables in words multiplied by 84.6, and subtracting the total from 206.835.
Many premium tools check the readability score of content, like Grammarly. You can also use online tools like WebFX Readability Test Tool for the same. These tools also tell you how many sentences are in your content and the word count, as well as advise on grammar, punctuation and when you need to shorten text.
You may see the difference in the Flesch reading scores from different tools. It isn’t because those tools follow different formulas for finding the readability score, it happens because of the complex word factor. All tools don’t have the same list of common words, one may consider a word as complex while others may not.
Here’s how Flesch Reading Scores affect SEO:
If you are writing a piece that is 1,500 words long, then you should aim for an average Flesch Reading Score of 70.
One can easily differentiate between more readable content and less readable content. Here’s an example:
“Digital marketing is all about promoting a brand on digital platforms to get more leads and engagements, which can help companies boost their revenue, which is also at a very low expense.”
The readability score of the above content is 34.
Now, check this out:
Digital marketing is all about promoting a brand on digital platforms. It allows marketers to get more leads and engagements. Ultimately, it helps them in getting more return on investment.
The readability score of the above content is 47.
Now, you can easily see the reason for the difference in the readability score between both examples. In the first example, the whole paragraph consists of a single sentence, while in the second example, the paragraph is made up of three sentences. It helped to adjust both the average sentence and the average word count in the examples.
You may be wondering why the score is still 47, not higher. The reason is that it is easier to maintain good readability in long content than less content.
Content written for experts may not allow the writer to achieve a readability score of above 50. In the case of expert blogs or articles, writers need to add many technical terms and if you add technical terms, it affects the percentage of complex words found in the content.
However, do try to keep your average sentence length between eight to 12 words to avoid making the content score even lower.
Understandably, following all of these guidelines is not easy while writing content. Check your copy once you’ve completed the piece entirely.
The Flesch Readability Score is how you make sure your content is readable to the majority of your online audience. However, this score doesn’t guarantee the success of your content. The main ingredient that makes any content engaging is the unique idea and quality of the content.
The readability score of this article is 70, per the WebFx Readability Testing Tool.