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5 Mistakes That Will Make Your Copy Utterly Unreadable

Want to make your content more engaging? Above all else, make sure that it’s not utterly impossible to read. Few people set out to write copy in hieroglyphics, but a few small mistakes can easily have this effect. Here are five mistakes to look out for when writing copy.

Inappropriate fonts/sizes

There are certain fonts that we all know to avoid such as Papyrus and Wingdings, however there are others that can have their purpose but can occasionally get misused. For example, a font like Impact can be a great choice for headlines – but if the font size is too small, this font can become difficult to read. It’s possible to use all kinds of fun fonts, so long as they’re large enough and reserved only for headlines.

You should also check when writing web content that fonts are mobile friendly. Quite often, text displayed on a mobile phone needs to be larger, especially when it comes to links that need to be large enough to easily tap with your finger.

Clashing colour schemes

Certain colours can clash and result in text being unreadable. A common mistake is placing text over a multicoloured background such as a photograph, which can result in the image distorting the text. There are lots of tricks that can help to make text on top of images more readable such as darkening the contrast of images, positioning text in a certain area or choosing out-of-focus images that make text on top sharper. You’re best sticking to a few font colours, using different colours to highlight information only – too much unnecessary psychedelia will be distracting.


Most people are intimidated by huge blocks of text. Cutting up text into paragraphs can make it easier to skim read for those that are in a hurry, plus it simply makes it look more organised and professional. You could also break up information by using titles, bullet points, images and infographics.

Keyword stuffing

In the early days of the internet, you could rise to the top of search engines by stuffing a text full of keywords. Nowadays, keyword overload can actually negatively affect your rankings on most major search engines. When overly obvious, it can also affect the readability of text by giving it a jarring and unnatural tone. Try to incorporate keywords sporadically and sensibly into your text. Some people find it easier to employ the help of an SEO agency when improving their search engine rankings. After all, rankings can be affected by all manner of factors from use of hyperlinks to the amount of traffic a page gets.

Pretentious vocabulary/technical jargon

This is the mistake that most people are guilty of. Often when you’ve been in a career for a certain amount of time, you get used to the technical language and unique terms – however most of your customers are unlikely to know these terms. This can result in company descriptions that most people don’t understand. In other cases, people may try to use flowery language to try and sound more professional. This can often just come across pretentious and difficult to read. Try to use layman’s terms when possible – you don’t need to use the term ‘mortar logistics’ when ‘construction’ will do. Only use technical terms if you plan on then defining them afterwards.

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