Are you thinking of becoming a UX writer? Or do you not understand what these professionals are doing? Whatever the reason, we’ll show you what you need to know about UX writing and then how to use it as part of your marketing strategy.

The world is changing very fast, and most professions are evolving to adapt to these changes, as is writing. Nowadays, there are people who write content, copywriters, technical writers, and writers who write blogs. Finally, there’s UX writing. This may not seem very clear. Isn’t UX related to design? Yes, but UX writers use words to give final form to visual UX design and entertain digital users. If even this doesn’t explain to you what UX writers do and whether you can deal with this, below we give you a detailed explanation.

What’s UX Writing?

what is ux writing

UX, i.e., writing that considers the user experience, is the process of creating compelling, concise, and readable text that the user encounters when visiting the website or interface of a mobile application. This content mainly appears on welcome screens, login pages, website navigators, slogans, page titles, error pages, etc. The goal of UX writing is to help the user navigate through the interface and product intuitively. In addition, UX writing plays a significant role in creating the voice and tone of a brand.

Because they exist in today’s hectic world, the writing for websites, mobile apps, and Internet content is more complex than ever before, and therefore it is necessary to create an accurate guide. Digital services and products are increasingly intertwined with people’s daily lives and habits. Therefore, developing a virtual experience that seems natural and flows gradually is necessary. Because people use technology differently than they did a couple of years ago, UX writing has emerged, bringing content in line with the context and thus making it more understandable to users.

What’s the Difference Between UX Writers and Copywriters?

difference between ux writers and copywriters

After everything you’ve read, you might think UX writing and copywriting are the same. Although the line between the two seems thin, they are fundamentally different.

UX writers deliver and convey a clear message about the product while targeting a specific audience. To achieve this, they need to put themselves in the place of these users, which helps them create relevant guides that will show users what to do. This means that users are at the center of UX writing and that words are a tool that writers use to reach users and convey a message. They must connect with the group they are targeting through the product.

The best way to achieve this is for UX writers to be part of the UX design experience and process. That’s why they’re the most active members of UX teams, contributing and supporting by working with designers, sharing their ideas, discussing projects, and establishing writing principles. However, this is mostly a demanding task. Therefore, UX writers must have a thorough knowledge of UX as well as explore what the practice is and what the goals of UX are.

Many started out as copywriters or engaged in both copywriting and UX writing at the same time. The difference is that copywriters want to sell a product using words. These professionals mostly write content for pre-existing products and services, which means they can’t influence the design as UX writers can. Copywriters rely on a variety of methods to persuade readers to buy something, such as email marketing (Benchmark, for example, offers automated, hyper-targeted email marketing campaigns produced using pre-built email templates for each stage of the client’s journey), landing pages, descriptions on social media, or blog posts. The number of products sold and new customers indicates that they have succeeded.

To summarize, copywriting serves to help companies increase profits, while UX writing serves to help customers. UX writing aims to find the best words to support UX design and is present in any content users encounter when interacting with the product. Therefore, UX writing is closely related to existing customers.

Furthermore, these two types of professionals have different writing processes.

Writing Process: Copywriters vs UX Writers

writing process ux writers and copywriters

Before they start writing content, copywriters generally research the topic to analyze and identify the most relevant keywords. The text must have an appropriate keyword density in order to be better optimized and ranked on Google. These professionals use tools like Yoast, synonym dictionary, Google Keyword Planner, etc. After the first draft is completed, the text is sent to the client for review, and the latest version is corrected according to the client’s comments.

UX writers are also starting the research, but it’s more complex and focuses on the communicative style of the user. They analyze the language and the way their customers speak. If they didn’t participate in the product creation, UX writers talk to the creator of the product or the owner in order to understand every detail. Therefore, UX writers don’t have much freedom regarding message structure. Because of this, their work actually involves more editing than writing.

Content is constantly changing and edited in UX writing to stay relevant and effective. This means that these professionals invest a lot of time and energy in testing different content with minor changes. The tools they use are also different from those used by copywriters. For UX writers, Google Docs, spreadsheets, GitHub, Sketch, Figma, and a dictionary of synonyms are indispensable for UX writers.

Basic Principles of Flawless UX Writing

basic principles of flawless ux writing

UX writers help users navigate easily through a virtual experience, which means that a UX writer’s text represents a bridge between company goals and user needs. Therefore, they are involved in creating the style and voice of the product, and they are there to make sure that everyone in charge of the content understands how to use that style and voice effectively.

UX writers generally develop a style guide that covers writing styles, guidelines, and principles and shares it with the company. In this way, all relevant parties can join forces and deliver the same product message as the tone. Therefore, these professionals prevent developers, product managers, and designers from publishing anything that users might not understand. They are responsible for ensuring that every project and function is coherent, which ultimately results in seamless communication.

UX writers play a key role in product design, as they contribute to the creation of an application, website, or feature and identify issues that users may encounter when interacting with the product. Therefore, UX writers need to turn robotic and incomprehensible text into something systematic and easy to understand.

These professionals must adhere to four principles in order to achieve this:

  • Clarity
    Users generally have time to read about 28% of the words during an average website visit. UX writers strive to convey a basic message to users using simple language and understandable phrases.
  • Conciseness
    In UX writing, every word is significant and has a role to play. These professionals avoid any expression that can reduce the effectiveness of the message.
  • Consistency
    For each product or feature, UX writers employ the same word choice, phrasing, and style.
  • Turning to People
    The goal is to create easy-to-understand content and bring the robotic text to life. Therefore, messages must make sense and lead the user to gain trust in the product. When UX writers implement these values, users believe that product creators care about them and their needs. This brings the product closer to people and creates a connection with it.

Examples of UX Content

examples of ux content

In general, any content that a user encounters when navigating through an interface is UX writing. However, the following examples are the most common:

  • Call to Action
    A CTA  is a subtle instruction that challenges the user to take a certain action. UX writers need to make sure the CTA is clear and specific.
  • Interface Input Hints
    Input hints are text boxes that show the user what information to enter. It’s crucial that these texts are clear so that people don’t guess what they are about.
  • Navigate and Design Website Menus
    The website menu displays content and categories, making it easy for users to navigate the website. UX writers create a concise template and establish clear links, which helps visitors navigate the website.
  • Notifications that Trigger User Interaction
    Most websites and social networks contain notifications that trigger the user to participate and initiate a conversation. It should be subtle, interactive, and short.
  • Highlight the Accompanying Content
    Most functions and features generally require additional explanations that tell the user what to expect. The message should be simple and easy to comprehend.
  • Conversational UI
    A Conversational User Interface (UI) is a user interface that mimics natural human conversation. UX writers make these texts seem credible and authentic.

The Most Common Mistakes UX Writers Make

the most common mistakes ux writers make

Despite the simple language used by UX writers, sometimes it’s difficult to find the mistakes in the writing since they can be very hard to spot. However, if they are serious enough, they can interfere with the product’s message.

Below are some of the most common mistakes UX writers make:

  • Technical Language and Jargon
    The goal of UX writing is to make the text easy to understand. Technical terms and colloquial phrases make the message less understandable. Therefore, industry-specific words confuse those who are new to the product.
  • Lorem Ipsum
    Lorem Ipsum is a text that doesn’t contain meaningful information and confuses users. UX writers should avoid using this type of text because it makes product design seem unrelated and foreign.
  • Use of Passive Voice
    Using passive voice makes the content sounds boring and excessive. Instead, UX writers should use active voice because it’s more dynamic and makes the text easier to understand.
  • Excessive Sentences
    UX writers should avoid confusing sentences at all costs and stick to texts that are clear and concise.

Who Can Become a UX Writer?

who become ux writer

If you’re wondering what it takes to become a UX writer, you should know that there’s no specific education you need to have. These professionals may have a degree in any education field such as in journalism or a doctorate in architecture.

This discipline is relatively new, but these professionals are in high demand. Given that companies want their products to reach customers, as a result, the global average salary for technical writers in 2021 was $ 65,000. However, the salary depends on various factors, such as years of experience and country. For example, UX writers can expect the highest salaries in Switzerland, the United States, Australia, Ireland, and Germany. Furthermore, UX writing can be found under various other names, as the name debate is still unresolved. Some of these names are UX Writing Manager, Lead UX Writer, Senior Digital Copywriter, Content Strategist, and Content Designer.

More women seem to be involved in this profession. According to certain global findings concerning UX writers, 74% of respondents identify as women, while 26% identify as men. Most of them have 4 to 9 years of experience, while only 4% have been in this industry for less than a year. Therefore, we can conclude that there’s no one universal way to become a UX writer. However, it’s desirable that you have experience in copywriting and be supported by knowledge of the user experience.

UX writers mostly work in teams, so you need to have great communication skills, and work with people from different fields. Attention to detail, patience, and excellent research skills have remained important characteristics of these professionals. Lastly, empathy and emotional intelligence are key in UX writing because you need to empathize with users, understand their needs, and help them connect with the product.

Conclusion

UX writing connects users to a product by creating an intuitive digital experience and giving a positive impression of a function, product, or service. Although photos attract many people, words keep them and remove doubts. UX writers use text to make customers feel understood and to connect with the product.

Furthermore, visuals and words must form a whole in order to create a great user experience. Without it, users are likely to be disappointed and not understand the message. For example, 88% of online shoppers say they wouldn’t return to a website after a negative user experience. Of those, 44% would tell their friends to do the same. This shows the importance of UX writers. Also, this shows you that right now is the right time to become a UX writer.

how to use ux writing as a marketing strategy