Listicles Fundamentals And Benefits: Things You Must Know Before Creating Your Next List Post!

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A blog post that is written in a list-based format like a compilation of the best tools, tips, and tricks is called Listicles. In most cases, the list is of 10-20 things related to a specific topic or industry.;Listicle definition by Merriam-Webster Dictionary | TheBloggingBox.com

Writing list posts is comparatively (a little) easier and at the same time more fun than writing any other blog post type. And their greatest benefit lies in the huge number of shares they get on social media.

Each share opens doors to new opportunities and the eyeballs those shares receive turn into more clicks, website visits, conversions, and revenue.

Why Lists Posts?

Constantly coming up with quality articles for your readers is not easy. And sometimes even the most successful blogger or freelance writer can find it really difficult to stay focused and come up with a new great idea repeatedly.

And in such situations writing a list post can be the best thing one can do.

Bloggers have adopted this format wholeheartedly as it has proven to be a savior for all kinds of content writers from all over; by helping them meet the endless demand of their audiences and keeping their readers engaged.

https://www.buzzfeed.com/

It is a writing dream for some bloggers as compared to other articles they can write list posts more quickly no matter what their niche is. And then all they need is a catchy title to drive tons of traffic to their website.

Moreover, list posts are not only quick to write but also fun to read or skim through.

Optin Monster Ultimate List of Blogging Statistics and Facts | TheBloggingBox.com

According to the Optin Monster’s Ultimate List of Blogging Statistics and Facts, 43% of people admit to skimming blog posts, while 36% of readers prefer list-based headlines.

Global Digital Population as of January 2021 - Source: Statista | TheBloggingBox.com

In January of 2021, 59.5% of the world population was using the internet. That makes around 4.66 billion active internet users (globally), out of which 4.32 billion only use the internet on their mobile phones.

Optin Monster Ultimate List of Blogging Statistics and Facts | TheBloggingBox.com

77% of that 4.66 Billion, which is approximately 3.59 Billion are blog readers. And 36%, around 1.29 Billion from them are looking forward to reading a listicle just about right now. Why not just write a listicle for those 1.29 Billion people?

First, let’s list down the factors that make listicles the topmost preference of 1.29 Billion readers.

Why Do 1.29 Billion People Love Listicles?

  • The list format takes less time to consume compared to other types of popular posts format.
  • Numbering or a bullet point list make listicles easy to skim through for important information
  • Amazing list posts can be extensive at times to the level of being encyclopedic with a lot of usable information.

Here are some practical examples from various categories ranging from posts like ‘Top 10 most beautiful beaches in the world‘ and Top 25 Cigars of 2021

There are long numbered lists like The 85 Best Watches for Men and Google’s 200 Ranking Factors.

List articles are popular because they provide several ideas, approaches, strategies, or digital tools relevant to any subject or scenario within a single article.

31 Brilliant Lead Generation Techniques - Source: Sales Hacker | TheBloggingBox.com

This format works great for distributing heavy value bundles of great ideas covering vast topics in a single piece of content.

Amazingly, while researching to write this piece, I found this story where a listicle ranked at #1 on Google even when its competitors had a much higher domain rating, with more backlinks coming from a higher number of referring domains.

Seems Like Lists Work in Mysterious Ways! And, the concept of list posting is so old that we can’t just think it would die anytime soon.

8 Reasons Why The Listicles Remain A Hit

I cant even recall how many list posts I have across in my years reading. But I know for sure that a list post tend to be a success no matter what.

And here are eight reasons why I think they remain to be a hit:

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1) Numbers Attract – Readers

A number at the beginning of a headline adds value regardless of how low or high that number is or even the subject that post is based on.

\”It’s a blogosphere favorite for good reason — ‘list’ content works, in large part due to the attention-grabbing power of the headline.\” Brian Clark | Founder Copyblogger

And in most cases, these headlines are too irresistible for the reader to ignore and scroll away.

2) High-Quality Listicle Establish Authority

Not all list posts are the same. However, a better listicle article with real valuable content can immensely establish the authority of content creators in their area of expertise.

When you write listicles to share ideas, strategies, techniques, methods, tips, tricks, tools; anything you share knowledge in multiple specific variations that can only come from someone who is a subject matter expert.

A well-written list post will require immense research with attention to detail and that demonstrates your level of knowledge within your niche.

3) Listicle Headlines Set Expectations

A list post headline helps set very clear expectations about the content of the actual post while reassuring the reader that it will answer their problem in the most easy-to-digest format.

Moreover, the number in the headline informs the reader about the length of the post and how much time it would take to finish it. Plus, the numbered points help the reader keep track of their progress and can easily tell how much they have read and how much is left.

4) Shares Expand Reach

A great post that is fun to read is also fun to share and that is why listicles get lots of social shares. Those shares catch eyeballs, which results in clicks and those clicks drive traffic to your website, giving your list post more views and more conversions eventually.

All this activity ends up fueling the website’s SEO and boosting its SERPs ranking.

Readers love sharing listicles on Social Media with their friends and others because they see them as an amazing compilation of valuable information or a ready-made to-do list that will help others without requiring any hard work from their side.

5) Saves Reader Time

List posts save readers a lot of time as they can skim through them easily. And anything that can save a consumer some time in this fast-paced, busy world will always be admired and appreciated.

43% of readers skim through articles and just check headlines to see if they can find anything of their interest and if the post is worth reading or not. And a really helpful article in a listicle format full of interesting facts and valuable content wins hands down.

6) Easy To Comprehend

List posts make it possible for the writer to turn a huge amount of complex information on a vast topic into something more digestible and easy to comprehend for the reader. A writer can easily break that information down into small packages or list points making it a lot easier and fun to consume.

Another thing that readers love about listicles that actually makes them easy for the reader is that list posts have a very distinguishable beginning, mid, and end.

7) Grows SERPs Ranking

A well-planned and well-written list post can also help improve your site’s ranking on SERPs ( Search Engine Page Results) by earning you quality backlinks.

List posts provide good opportunities for backlink building that you can avail yourself of. For example, you are compiling a list of a product used for a specific purpose, and in that list, you are comparing and reviewing twenty different products from fifteen different manufacturers.

You can simply link back to the product page on the manufacturer’s website and inform them about your review through email. Chances are that if the manufacturer likes your review then they might link back to you.

8) Great For Building Interactive Audience Engagement

Make it a habit that every time you are done writing all the points in your list then in your conclusion paragraph initiate an interactive engagement with your audience by asking them for their feedback.

The first step to building engagement is initiating a conversation which you can easily do by simply asking your readers for their point of view on the subject.

Ask them if they agree with you and encourage them to share with you what they know based on their own experiences. Ask for their suggestions and tell them to let you know if there is anything that they would want you to add to your list or remove from it. Ask them for their experience with a product or service and if they would like to mention an alternative.

Treat your audience like people and human beings to make them open up and engage with you.

Fundamentals of Successful Listicles

All listicles are not equal.

We need to understand that anything that comes easy is never worthwhile, and listicles are no different. The amount and time, effort, and dedication that you put in would show in your work.

If you really want this most simple format to be successful for you and drive the expected results, then make sure that instead of just doing it you go the extra mile to do it right.

And for that, you need to know the core fundamentals that will make it right.

Here are seven things that have been found common in the majority of listicles that featured high-quality content that saw success. [YOU CAN DOWNLOAD THE GIVEN CHEAT SHEET FOR EASY REFERENCE.]

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1) An Attractive & Detailed Headline

A click on your link is your first step to success, and you are only getting that if you have the right title or headline for your post. A headline that would compel a reader to want to check your post must stand out from other search results or on his social media news feed.

Here is a great tip or a simple technique that you can use.

{NUMBER} Tips/Tools/Strategies for {ADVANTAGE/BENEFIT}

Or you can also download my eBook, which contains a very useful compilation of [great headlines that convert.]

And if you can come up with something better on your own or already have a more effective technique then it would be super great if you can share it with us in the comments section.

2) Captivating Introduction

The reader is on your list post after clicking on your attractive headline. Instead of bombarding him with your list, the right approach is to let the reader know in your first paragraph that they have landed on the right page.

Generally, people think that their situation or problem is unique. Hence, before taking advice from someone they don’t know, they prefer to be sure that the person advising understands their pain and situation.

When you begin writing your list post, make sure to point out these factors in your first paragraph to lock their interest in reading further; then let your great list take over.

3) Logical Composition And Easy-to-skim Structure

It’s not rocket science. It’s just about organizing your list in a format that makes sense to the reader and is pleasant to the eye.

In order for your post to make sense, you just have to place things in their natural rightful order. For example, if you are writing about ‘Skincare Routine,’ then start with what needs to be done in the morning or day, then talk about what happens they must do in the evenings and finally what is to be done at night.

Here Are Some Writing Tips To Help You Compose Your List:

  • Importance: The most important, funny, interesting, informative, or surprising point should come first.
  • Size: Points that are shorter or have less text and information will come first.
  • Actionable: Start with more actionable and easier to achieve, then move on to things more difficult/costly.
  • Supportive: Each point should support or build upon the previous one or more numbered points to confirm relevancy and a connection between them.

Try Out These Methods To Make Your List More Skimmable:

  • Numbering: Number each point and make sure that the reader can easily find each point.
  • Headings: Use H2-H4 headings as required for each point. It is also good for SEO plus this method makes it easier to identify, understand and locate sections during scroll.
  • Paragraphs: Use smaller paragraphs.
  • Format Consistency: Be consistent with font sizes and styles of your headings and paragraphs.
  • Visual Consistency: People experiment with with adding fun images in form of gifs or graphics and sometimes even videos to their post. However, in order to main visual consistency in your post then it advised that If you using an image or graphic in one point, then make sure to use relevant images in your other points as well.

A logical and consistent structure with numbered and bullet points is all that you need to make your listicle more skimmable and fun for readers.

4) Actionable Tips Based On In-Depth Insights

Actionable tips are important because you need to tell people what they must do. Here’s how you convert a valuable numbered point into a powerful actionable tip.

Give it An Introduction: Make sure to introduce your point in a few lines and let the reader know why you put it in the list.

Provide Reference: Use examples in the form of an image, graphic, or diagram as a reference to make your point understood more quickly.

Tell them What To Do: Guide your readers on their next move and the step they need to take as soon as they are done reading.

Note: If you don’t have enough information on a point, it’s best to leave it out. It is better to have 5 points properly explained with practical, actionable advice than have 500 that are just useless.

5) Broken Down Into Subsections

For longer point descriptions, break each section down into subsections.

I have experienced list posts of all types, ranging from ‘top ten’ quick reads to those with 100 plus points, each with great comprehensive detail and actionable advice.

It’s the flexibility that gives a list article format its charm.

The massive encyclopedic value turns your list post into an ‘ultimate step by step guide‘ or a ‘skyscraper post,’ which is great for gaining attention and winning backlinks. However, if you list more than 20 things, then it’s best to divide them into sections with a small index at the top.

6) An Element of Amazement

A boring or ordinary post can be made interesting and exciting with the addition of just one unique, surprising, or controversial piece of information.

You need to understand that you cannot just have the same points on your list that everybody else has and expect it to perform some extraordinary miracle.

Here’s what you can do:

  1. Come up with a new point: Do some extra research and brainstorming before you start writing a list. Go the extra mile if you have to but come up with something that one point that nobody else has thought of or included in their lists before. That one point added to your existing list of other popular main points may just do that magic which will outshine you among your competitors.

  1. Give an existing popular point an altered perspective: For instance, if your list is about ways to lose weight, instead of telling readers to quit fatty foods like everyone else, you being the odd one, ask them to eat fat in one of your points. And then to make that point work in your favor, you need to explain that they must have some to cope up with the urges, and then advise them to cut it down more gradually.

Feedback Request

Finally, they always invite their readers to contribute by giving their valuable feedback. It would be best always to make it a habit to ask your readers to tell you what other thing they would like to add to your list.

The best and simplest way to engage with your audience is by asking a simple question or for their point of view now and then. You can encourage people to engage by initiating a simple conversation. Plus, this is a great gesture to let them know that you do not see yourself as Mr. Know-It-All and that you value their input and the knowledge you get from them.

Bottom line

List posts or listicles are high in demand and more than a Billion people approx 36% of readers prefer list-based headlines. They are easy and fun to create however, significant research and efforts are required to create something that would fetch results and you could be proud of.

You know the benefits so rest assured that whatever efforts you put in will all be worth it.

I have briefed you on the fundamentals as well so now you know each factor that you need to work on to come up with a masterpiece.

If you have any questions or if there is something you would like to add or tell us about that one awesome listicle you wrote some time back for your own blog or for somebody else then please share your experience with us in the comments section below.

Good luck!

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    Erna 8thloop
    Erna 8thloop
    Welcome to the world of sports through my eyes – I'm Erna, a dynamic blogger with a passion for breaking down strategies and exploring sports culture. Stay connected and in-the-know with my insightful content.

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