Tutorials, or “how to” articles, are still very popular online. While there are some bad tutorials out there, there are also some great ones. Their popularity is just one reason that writers should be interested in tutorials. The other reason is that writing a tutorial usually pays more than writing a less detailed piece.
In general, the more technical and specific the tutorial, the higher the pay. In this post, I’ll give you a few tips to help you write a winning tutorial.
Five Tips to Help You Write a Better Tutorial
If you’re interested in writing a good tutorial here are five tips you should follow:
- Consider your audience. When you are writing instructions (which is basically what a tutorial is), who you are writing for is very important. Think about what they already know and what they need to know. If you are not sure who your audience is, study the site where your material will be published or ask your client.
- Do your homework. Writing a tutorial takes a bit longer than writing many other types of web content. That is because you must study your topic carefully and learn enough about it to ensure that your article is accurate. You may even need to try out the software package that you are writing about yourself if you are not already familiar with it.
- Be specific. When it comes to writing a tutorial, specific is usually better. You’re not just telling your reader what they need to do and why, you’re also telling them how to do it in a way that they can understand.
- Make it user-friendly. Formatting is important for all web content, but it’s doubly important for tutorials. Wherever possible, use formatting that makes your material more readable online. User-friendly formatting includes the use of bulleted lists, numbered lists, and subheads.
- Test your tutorial. Testing is the last tip for writing a better tutorial, but is probably the most important one. After you have written a draft of your tutorial, follow the steps yourself to see if you have left anything out. Better yet, have a friend or family member test your tutorial.
Do you write tutorials? If so, what tips would you add?