For the past few months, I’ve been experimenting with an up-and-coming writing platform called Draft.
It’s a nifty application that you can use on your desktop to compose anything from blog articles to technical copy. And guess what? It has made my writing tangibly better. I even have evidence.
I used the service tentatively for a while, mostly because I loved the interface and how it spaced everything nicely for me.
A major issue I’ve always had with using WordPress to draft articles is how awkward the layout is when putting a post together, which leads to an article that looks different from how you imagined it.
After a few weeks of using Draft once in a while, I started to notice that some of my blog posts were varying in their Flesch Reading Ease score.
Your Flesch Reading Ease score is based on a test that WordPress conducts on your article’s copy. You can see it via basic SEO tools that WordPress provides.
The score determines how easy it is to read your copy for the average reader.
- 90-100 indicates that your writing can be easily read by children.
- 60-70 indicates that your writing can be easily read by teens and adults.
- 0-30 indicates that your writing is for academic readers.
Now, I don’t know who your audience is, but if you’re a writer like me, aiming for a well-rounded demographic is a priority.
Google favors the 60-100 range because it knows that most readers will have a positive experience reading your copy, making your article more discoverable on search engines.
That is why I take the Flesch Reading Ease score very seriously, and you probably should too.
Back to the subject at hand. I was noticing that my reading scores for some articles were noticeably higher than normal.
It didn’t take long for me to realize that this was because they were written using Draft.
But I wanted to be sure, so I started writing half of my articles with Draft and the others without.
Here is an article I did NOT write using Draft:
This article (though well received by loyal readers) had a score of 59 on the Flesch Reading Ease Test, making it “fairly difficult to read.” Additionally, traffic for this article was fairly low the first day.
Here is another article I did NOT write using Draft:
This one had decent traffic initially, but it ultimately fell short of sharing goals. Its reading score was 63, slightly better than the article before this, and the data shows that even a few extra points contributed to more traffic overall.
Now, here are two articles I DID write using Draft:
The article on self-esteem has a score of 73, while the Christmas article is at 75. As of now, these are two of our most popular blog articles in the past month. Their traffic is well over double the average.
Keep in mind that the previous articles are ones I published on Thriveworks. There are a few other examples from late November that show the same trends.
For the sake of experimentation, I decided to try this out with other websites I publish on, including Lifehack.org.
Here are two posts I did NOT write using Draft:
As you can see, each article had 50-70 shares. Additionally, their Flesch Reading Ease scores were below 60.
Alright, let’s compare that to a post I DID write using Draft:
That’s 373.5….thousand. So 373,500,000 shares for an article with a reading score of 75.
Of course, there are multiple variables to consider here (it’s an easy-to-share article), so here are some more articles similar to the previous examples.
I could go on, but you probably get the point. For whatever reason, articles I’ve written using Draft perform far better on average.
Why is this?
As I mentioned earlier, Draft’s interface is simple and spaced out logically. While writing, I have an easier time managing the lengths of my thoughts and sentences.
I’m also more likely to cut out what doesn’t work, as I am able to see how a sentence doesn’t fit in properly after writing it. During the editing process, it’s easier for me to gloss over little things like that.
Additionally, I think less about the accuracy of my writing and more about the content. Because I’m not aware that this could be the final product (I have to edit it again and export it to WordPress), I am less stressed when putting it together.
Instead of worrying don’t worry about images, formatting (though that is an option), and links, I just write.
There are a lot of other interesting features that Draft offers, such as collaborative tools that make it easier for you to edit posts with colleagues and friends. You can also customize the font and backgrounds to your liking (though I prefer the source code).
Overall, it’s a free service that does at least one thing very well in my opinion: help me write addictively interesting content.
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