I want my website to focus on one thing: the best reading experience for you.
Websites often prioritise the content creator over the reader. The creator wants to track everything you click on, they want you to share their content on as many social platforms as possible, they want to make money from ads, they want to push you to the next article. All of this takes you away from reading the content on the page you are actually on. Crazy!
For my own website, there is one priority. You - reading the words in front of you.
In my opinion, the best model for achieving this is the book, because:
1. There are no distractions
Books have no ads, no sidebars, no social share buttons, and absolutely no tracking scripts.
2. There are an ideal number of characters on each line
Book publishers worked out a long time ago that the ideal number of characters per line is between 55 and 70. Text that is too long means the reader’s eye struggles to keep tracking the line. Text that is too short means the reader’s eye is travelling back to the start of the line too often. In either case, the reader has their reading rhythm broken.
3. Typography is important
Font faces, font sizes, line height… these are all crucial components of keeping a good rhythm of reading. There is a golden ratio of page width > font size > line height > characters per line. Thankfully there are plenty of great golden ratio font calculators around to help us out.
If you are a content creator, I hope this page inspires you to think about how many distractions your readers are contending with.
If you are a reader, I hope you find my site easy and enjoyable to read.