What is Readability? - XSitePro Website Design

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One of the few things XSitePro can't actually do for you is write your page copy. Sure, it can help you import pages, split them up, organize them, make them look great and publish them, but at some point the chances are you will need to actually put your creative thinking-cap on and put metaphorical pen to paper. Usually the home page and sales pages will be hand crafted by you at the very least - in some cases every word will be the gospel of the site creator. In either case we have included a tool that will be invaluable: The Readability checker.

 

XSitePro actually reads your copy for you and generates two scores, using the Flesch Kincaid scoring system:

 

Reading Ease

 

Grade Level

 

 

Flesch Who?

 

This system, devised by Rudolf Flesch during the 1940's and 1950's was created with the intention of assessing the level of comprehension difficulty when reading a passage on contemporary English text. The system uses two different formulas to evaluate and score a text passage, and it is these two scores that XSitePro actually generates for you, using the Flesch Kincaid methodology.

 

Both of these scores are explained below.

 

 

Reading Ease:

 

The Reading Ease score is derived from a proven formula which outputs a score between 0 and a maximum 121 (in reality the maximum tends to be 100). The interpretations of the readability score is as follows:

 

90-100 score - The text is easily understandable by an average 11 year-old student.

 

60-70 score - The text can be easily understood by an average 13-15 year-old student.

 

0-30 score - The text can be easily understood by college graduates.

 

 

Depending on the intended audience for your site, you should assess the score given to your page content against the list above, to see if your copy-writing will hit its mark.

 

 

Grade Level:

 

The Grade Level score is again derived from a proven formula - this time translating the 0-100 score above into US grade-school level. Translating the 0-100 score in this way makes it easier for us all to map the readability to something we understand - Grade school levels.

 

The simple rule is this: If the score were '8.2' the text would be easily understood by a child in 8th Grade. Were the score 7.6 the text would be understandable by a student in 7th Grade. And so on, up to 12th Grade.

 

 

Ensuring your page content is 'readable' is incredibly important. This might sound a little obvious but when you add into the equation the fact that people generally skim Web site copy a lot faster than they would, say, a book the need for clarity is even greater. You have to be absolutely sure that in a matter of seconds you can get across your message to the reader, and so this tool is an incredibly useful one in your page-creation arsenal.

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