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Are you thinking about a job change in 2022? Maybe you’re one of the many seeking new challenges and better working conditions after the disruptions of the pandemic. Or maybe you want to add a new skill to your toolkit to advance further in your current job. Maybe you’ve heard about this thing called UX writing and are wondering if it’s right for you.
We may be biased, but here at the UX Writing Hub, we think learning UX writing is a great idea. If you’re interested in writing, tech, user experience, or how people think and engage with products, UX writing could be a perfect fit. Here are 6 reasons to learn UX writing in 2022.
1. UX writing field is growing
Did you find this article by googling “UX writing” or something similar? Maybe you’re a writer who has heard about a new opportunity to use your gift for language in a new way. Maybe you’re a UX designer who has noticed how much user experience is improved by having team members who understand the power of words in design. Or you’ve heard about UX writing in any number of other places. But 10, or even 5 years ago, it would be unlikely that you would have encountered the term or the role at all. (And, to be honest, you will still probably have to explain what you do to your parents.)
As UX professionals have come to understand the importance of writing in user experience, UX writing has become an increasingly in-demand skill. Most large tech companies now have UX writing (sometimes called content design) teams, and those that don’t often find that their UX suffers for it. Booking.com has a UX writer for every 5–6 designers, and they are not alone in hiring more and more UX writers (sometimes called content designers).
2. UX writing is a great choice for second (or third, or fourth) acts
Since UX writing is an emerging field, only the youngest practitioners can claim to have spent their whole professional life as a practitioner. The rest of us got here by any number of paths. Many UX writers come from a background that includes, well, either UX or writing–designers, product managers, journalists, copywriters, and more. These backgrounds make it easy to transition to UX writing because some of the skills are the same. There will still be a learning curve, of course, but the overlap helps writers and UX folks transition smoothly into the new field.
But UX writing can be a second act for all kinds of people. In some ways, it’s easier–writers from other backgrounds may have to unlearn habits that don’t apply in UX writing. UX writers need a strong understanding of human psychology, so everyone from therapists to salespeople could be a good fit here. Academics may find that their insatiable curiosity about the world fits into the multifaceted world of UX writing. Basically, if you’re curious, committed, and ready to try new things, there’s a place for you in the world of UX writing.
3. UX writing offers tons of variety
If you’re considering learning UX writing, you are probably wondering: what exactly does a UX writer do? It’s a difficult question to answer, because UX writers do so much. A good broad answer might be: “UX writers are tasked with delivering the messaging of the product from the inside out—everything from product pages and emails, to button copy and push notifications.” That’s how UXWH’s founder, Yuval Keshtcher, put it in this article, which goes deeper into the question of what a UX writer actually does.
If you crave variety in your days, there are UX writing roles that involve all the things mentioned above, and more. You can drill down into microcopy, or work at a more strategic level, designing whole flows. Prefer to focus on one thing? There are roles with a much narrower scope. And since so many different companies and organizations need UX writers, you can work on products that suit your passions.
4. UX writing can be a six-figure job
You may be considering a new career because you are looking for greater fulfillment, or new challenges, or work that can be done remotely. But whatever your reason, you’ll need (and want) to know how much you can expect to make. Of course, there is a wide range of salaries. But here at UXWH, we’ve been conducting annual salary surveys to get a sense of what UX writers are making. Here’s what we found in 2021.
According to our survey, the global average salary for writers in tech is $65,000 USD. However, there is considerable variation across different countries, and for different roles. In some countries, the median salary for writers in tech is 6 figures. For instance, the median salary in the US is $105,000 USD. In both the US and the UK, the max reported salary topped $300,000. Whew! Of course, that’s not something to expect if you’re looking to start out in the field, but it’s inspiring to know that offers like that are out there.
5. UX writing is accessible to newcomers
Career transitions can be tough. Learning new skill sets, becoming comfortable with new terminology, and more is an overwhelming prospect. But there are many ways to learn UX writing, whether you want to wade or dive into the field. Perhaps because the field is relatively new, there are many articles on the internet, as well as courses that can be accessed at a reasonable cost and without an extensive application process.
If you want to dip a toe into the field, there are a lot of great articles across the internet. Start by checking out the UXWH blog, or browsing the UX writing content on Medium. After that, try a short free course, like this one from UXWH. You can improve your skills in whatever time you have, by following the tips in this article. When you’re ready to take your skills to the next level, consider taking a more indepth certification course, like the UX Writing Academy.
6. UX Writing can make you better at your job
Maybe you’re not looking for a job change. There are other reasons to learn UX writing. Designers, product managers, copywriters, and more may find that learning UX writing makes them better at their jobs. UX designers who add UX writing to their toolkit will gain a deeper understanding of how foundational content is to design. Those working on teams without UX writers may end up taking on writing responsibilities, and those who do work with writers can gain an appreciation for what the writers are doing and communicate more effectively with them.
In a Medium post, Laurah Mwirichia suggests that every writer can benefit from learning UX writing. She explains that UX writing is focused on producing copy that is clear, concise, and useful, and that these qualities are valuable for all writers to bear in mind. The focus on brevity that UX writing demands is also a useful exercise for writers, even those who are creating things much longer than button copy.
So, are you ready to learn UX writing in 2022? This free course is a great place to start out.