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Flesch reading ease score: Use it!

If you use our Content Analysis Tool in the Yoast SEO plugin, you may have come across the Flesch reading ease score. This score tells you how easy your text is to read. But how is the Flesch reading ease score measured? And why is this score important for SEO? In this post, I’ll explain the importance of readability for SEO and how the Flesch reading ease test works.

In the readability tab of the Yoast SEO meta box, we run all kinds of checks to help you write copy that’s easier to read. You’ll find the Flesch reading ease score there, among the other checks.

Why is readability so important for SEO?

It is unclear whether readability is a specific ranking factor. Therefore we don’t know if Google uses tools like the Flesch score (or a variation of it) as a ranking factor in its algorithm. However, we do know that, from an holistic SEO perspective, readability is very important.

If your text is too complicated, the text will be too hard to read for your audience. This might scare them off and make them search elsewhere for information. Impenetrable text will result in a high bounce rate, leading to a lower rank in the long run. So, you should make sure your articles are well written and not too difficult to read.

What does the Flesch reading ease test measure?

Flesch reading ease measures the complexity of an English text. But since the release of Yoast SEO 3.5, we also provide reliable scores for several other languages too.

The lower the score, the more difficult the text is to read. The Flesch readability score uses the average length of your sentences (measured by the number of words) and the average number of syllables per word in an equation to calculate the reading ease. Text with a very high Flesch reading ease score (about 100) is straightforward and easy to read, with short sentences and no words of more than two syllables. Usually, a reading ease score of 60-70 is considered acceptable/normal for web copy.

source: Wikipedia.com

Score Notes
90 – 100 easily understood by an average 11-year old student
60 – 70 easily understood by 13-15-year-old students
0 – 30 best understood by university graduates

The Flesch Reading Ease Score of this blog post is 72.6.

Read more: SEO copywriting: the Ultimate guide »