Why Bullets and Lists?

Last Updated on by Michael Brockbank

As I write content for various clients, one thing seems to be a solid commonality among them.  Bullets and lists are very welcome and sometimes demanded regardless of what the content depicts.  I read once that this is because visitors like lists and bullets providing information.  Could this really demonstrate the simplicity of the average Internet surfer?


I’m not saying that there is anything wrong with bullets and lists, but are people really that attracted to shiny objects?  Sometimes, the content could use these in order to detail information about a specific product or service.  However, I don’t see why every article should display bullets and lists if there is very little information that can be provided by them.

Forcing these formats on the content reminds me of why we put garnish on a plate at a restaurant.  It serves no other realistic purpose other than to make the dinner look good.  I suppose I can see why clients prefer to add these tidbits of garnish to the content.  I just don’t understand why some demand it on every article.  You don’t see a cut of parsley decorating a slice of pie that often, do you?  Why does this garnish need to be added to every page on your site?

Lists and bullets do have their usefulness.  As long as the content supports a list of items, reasons, or other discernible information the reader will be happy.  However, it doesn’t appeal to me to see a website over inundated by dots, numbers, and or letters.  Sometimes, there can be too much of a good thing.

Personally, I use bullets and lists occasionally to offset information and help the reader find what he or she is looking for.  But I don’t do it for every page.  Take this article, for example.  I really don’t see a purpose to putting garnish on this particular post because I don’t see a reason for it.  I suppose I could make a list as to why too many bullets upsets my mental balance, but the content of this post should do that for me.

Don’t be afraid of using bullets and lists, just don’t go hog-wild with them.  Trust that the average Internet surfer isn’t as easily distracted as mainstream media believes them to be.

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Michael Brockbank

Michael has been a freelance writer since January of 2012. He has completed more than 8,000 jobs for a variety of clients ranging from animals to travel. Currently, he is the Content Marketing Team Lead of GreenGeeks Web Hosting.

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