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​7 Steps to Increase Readers’ Time Spent in Your Newsroom

Blog post   •   Jun 30, 2016 08:00 GMT

Want to increase the average time people spend in your newsroom? As everyone knows, a little time spent on your site increases your bounce rates and kills overall engagement. How do you overcome that? Let’s get started.

The time people spend in your newsroom clearly indicates how they feel about it. If your audience is abandoning your newsroom without spending enough time to experience it, then something is wrong – it needs fixing!

You can easily find out the average time a user spends on your website in the Mynewsdesk platform, which uses Google analytics data – shown under Analyze » Newsroom. A good time on site average depends on your content. For a long article, if the average duration is less than a few seconds, you will need to give that post some serious attention; it either shows that the topic is irrelevant or needs a significant re-write.

As a communicator, your goal is to make users stay long enough to experience your brand and to convert visitors into loyal and enthusiastic followers. Achieving this means people are finding answers to their questions and more. Here are some useful tips:

1. Improve Readability

When publishing a blog post, a press release or a news item, ensure you break large paragraphs into easily readable bits. Also, create multiple sections for your article: heading, subheadings, paragraphs, bulleted lists, and have lots of white spacing.

2. Add High-Quality Images

Images are engaging, and everyone loves looking at them. Nobody likes text-heavy pages, especially online. There are many image banks you could use to liven up your newsroom. For example, you can find high-quality photos on sites like Stocksy , ShutterStock , Adobe Stock , etc. They have thousands of pictures, vectors, and illustrations that you can use. You can also find many high-quality royalty free photos on the web.

Choose images with care, though. Ensure they are contextual, tasteful and avoid images that are kitsch. Also, follow your organization’s style guide when selecting pictures.

3. Include Videos for an Enhanced Experience

"Every day people watch hundreds of millions of hours on YouTube and generate billions of views" (YouTube data). That's proof that videos are one of the most compelling, interactive, and engaging forms of content. Adding videos to your newsroom will boost engagement and will increase the time people spend in it.

4. Make Internal Linking a Habit

Ensure that each article or page in your newsroom has internal links to relevant content.

Internal links are useful because they help the reader navigate better in your newsroom, they establish information hierarchy and spread link juice (ranking power) around it. Make it a habit to include links, and you will see your bounce rate decrease and your SEO ranking improve. Just make sure that you are linking to relevant articles and pages.

5. Give More with Related Material

Attach files, e.g. press kits or images. Add resource links related to your press material, e.g. links to relevant pages on your site, a partner's one or external. Select other related material whether it be press releases, news, blog posts, events, images, videos, documents, contacts to your post. Don't go overboard with adding too much information – focus on what is relevant. Think of it as a journey, encouraging the reader to go from steps A to B to C, always stimulating their appetite for more.

6. Create Comment Worthy Content

Comments are one way of measuring reader engagement. How do you get people to interact in your newsroom, though? A useful technique is to ask readers questions. Add your opinion and ask people what they think. Disrupt the norm. By encouraging people to interact with your content, giving feedback and ideas about what you have to say, you will be in a better place regarding understanding a) what triggers audiences and b) what they see as boring.

7. Create Purposeful & Human-Led Stories

People love stories, and they love inspiring and motivational stories even more. Create content that provides value: teaches your audience something, helps them solve a problem, makes them excel in a particular area, shows how others have succeeded, shares your learnings and best practices, moves them, engages them, etc. By creating great content you will get more shares, more visitors, more followers and ultimately more time spent in your newsroom.

We hope these recommendations will help you turn your visitors into loving fans. Good luck!

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