It's not uncommon for many people not to know how to write a conclusion that drives home their point and leaves readers feeling satisfied. For that very reason, many blog posts and articles end up feeling unfinished or "incomplete."
If you've put a lot of effort into writing your content but stop at the introduction or body, you're doing yourself and your readers a disservice. After all, the conclusion is where you get to tie everything together and leave a lasting impression.
The good news is that writing a great conclusion isn't as difficult as it may seem. In fact, once you know what elements to include and which ones to avoid, you'll be well on your way to cranking out attention-grabbing conclusions in no time.
This guide will teach you everything you need to know about writing powerful conclusions that leave your readers wanting more. You'll learn how to summarize your supporting arguments, tease future content, and create a call to action that inspires your readers to take action.
Whether you’re writing an essay, research paper, lab report, listical or blog post, you should use a conclusion to bring your supporting arguments from the intro and body together into the conclusion.
The conclusion should give the reader a feeling of purpose and importance, while also letting them know what steps they could take next.
Depending on the purpose of your content or blog structure will help to pick what kind of conclusion is best suited for your piece. There are a few different conclusion techniques that can be used that will fit your needs. Let’s discuss some conclusion tips so you can see which one you’d like to implement when writing a conclusion.
One of the most common techniques for concluding a piece of writing is to simply tie up any loose ends that were left unresolved throughout the body of your article. This can be done by addressing any questions raised in the introduction or body or by providing closure on any plot points introduced early on.
For example, let's say you're writing an article about the benefits of meditation. In the introduction, you ask the reader to imagine a life without stress or anxiety. In the body, you talk about how meditation can help people achieve that.
In the conclusion, you might summarize what you talked about in the body and then invite the reader to start meditating to experience those benefits for themselves.
Tying up loose ends leaves the reader with a sense of closure and satisfaction. They know that they've gotten everything they came for and can walk away feeling good about what they've read.
Here's a good conclusion example:
"Meditation is one of the most effective ways to reduce stress and anxiety. It can help people achieve a sense of inner peace and calm, and it's something that anyone can do. If you're looking for a way to improve your mental health, meditation is a great place to start."
What often makes conclusions so challenging to write is that they seem like they need to be epic to match the rest of your article. That's not the case. In fact, some of the best conclusions are short and sweet.
The key is to make sure that your conclusion packs a punch without being too long-winded. You want to leave the reader with a clear and concise understanding of your main idea, and you want to do it in as few words as possible.
If you find yourself getting wordy or going off on tangents, cut it out. The last thing you want is for your concluding paragraph to drag on and lose the reader's attention.
Tip: Don't introduce new information in your conclusion. The whole point is to summarize what you've already talked about. If you find yourself introducing new topics or ideas, it's a sign that your body needs more work before you get to the conclusion.
We've established that the conclusion should be short, but equally important is that it be robust. In other words, you want to leave the reader feeling like your article was worth their time.
One way to do this is by emphasizing the importance of your argument. Why should the reader care about what you're saying? What are the real-world implications of your main idea?
For example, suppose you're writing about the importance of getting enough sleep. In the conclusion, you might talk about how lack of sleep can lead to health problems like obesity and heart disease. You might also talk about how getting enough sleep is essential for mental health and well-being.
By emphasizing the importance of your argument, you leave the reader with a sense of urgency and inspire them to take action. However, don't overstate your case. You don't want to make promises that you can't deliver on or make claims that you can't back up. Instead, keep it realistic and focused on the main points of your argument.
Here's a strong conclusion example:
"Getting enough sleep is essential for good health. Lack of sleep can lead to serious health problems like obesity and heart disease, and it can also have a negative impact on mental health. If you're not getting enough sleep, make some changes to your lifestyle and see if that makes a difference. Your body will thank you."
Another powerful way to end your article is by asking a provocative question. This is a great way to leave the reader thinking about your article long after they've finished reading it.
When choosing a question to ask, make sure it's relevant to the topic and isn't easily answered. You want the reader to really think about what you're saying and consider all sides of the issue.
Provocative questions can be a great way to get the reader engaged, but make sure you don't overdo it. If you're constantly asking questions, it can start to feel like an interrogation. Use them sparingly and only when they add something to the conversation.
For instance, let's say you're writing about quitting a 9-5 job to start your own business. In the conclusion, you might ask a question like, "Is it really worth it to risk everything for a chance at success?"
This question makes the reader think about the implications of your argument and whether or not they agree with you. It also gives them something to mull over after reading using critical thinking.
While the usage type of conclusion is a bit controversial, it can be effective if done right. Basically, you want to leave the reader with a warning about what could happen if they don't follow your advice to induce some sort of change. You’re essentially using fear-based techniques to stir action.
For example, if you're writing about the dangers of texting and driving, you might end with a warning like, "Texting and driving is dangerous, and it's only getting more so. If you don't want to end up in a wreck, put your phone away while you're behind the wheel."
This warning leaves the reader with a sense of urgency and encourages them to take action. However, make sure you don't overdo it. You don't want to sound like you're scolding the reader or telling them what to do.
Instead, focus on the consequences of their actions and let them decide for themselves. Try to be as objective as possible and avoid using emotionally charged language.
This is one you probably see a lot, especially in persuasive or argumentative writing. You want to call on the reader to do something at the end of your article.
This could be anything from signing a petition to changing their habits. The important thing is that you make it clear what you want the reader to do and why it's important.
For example, let's say you're writing about the importance of voting. In a good conclusion paragraph, you might say something like, "Voting is one of the most important things we can do as citizens. It's our chance to have a say in the direction our country is going. So if you haven't voted yet, make sure to do it. If you have, encourage your friends and family to do the same."
This conclusion is clear and concise, and it tells the reader precisely what you want them to do. It also explains why voting is important and how it can make a difference.
Similarly, this applies if that call-to-action is to buy or subscribe to something. For instance, if you're writing about project management software, you might say something like, "If you're looking for a way to streamline your projects and get more done, give X software a try. It can help you stay organized and on track, and it's affordable too."
In this example, you're not just telling the reader to buy the software; you're also giving them a reason why they should. This is important because you want the reader to feel like they're getting something out of it, not just that you're trying to sell them something.
A final conclusion technique you can use is to end with a story. This could be a personal anecdote, an example from history, or even a made-up story (but make it clear that it's fiction).
The important thing is that the story should somehow illustrate the point you're trying to make. For instance, if you're writing about the importance of perseverance, you might end with a story about somebody who overcame all odds to achieve their goals.
This technique can be especially effective if the story is personal. The important thing is that it ties into your argument and leaves the reader with something to think about.
This story would show the reader that it's possible to succeed no matter how difficult things seem. It would also leave them with a sense of hope and inspiration.
You can also use multiple stories to illustrate different points. For example, if you're writing about the different types of love, you might use a story about parental love, romantic love, and platonic love.
Each story would illustrate a different point, and they would all come together to leave the reader with a fuller understanding of love.
People love stories, so ending with one is a great way to leave a lasting impression on the reader.
Your intro and body shouldn't have a lot of unnecessary writing, nor should your conclusion. As mentioned before, keep your conclusion short and precise while getting the point across.
You may be tempted to use transitional phrases like “in conclusion,” or “in closing” because it feels natural to let your audience know that you’re concluding. But contrary to a presentation, it should be obvious to readers that you are at the conclusion, so you don't need to reiterate that.
If you want your reader to know about new information, then it should be created in new sections of the body, not in the conclusion. The same goes for not introducing your thesis statement in the conclusion for the first time if you are writing a research paper. Remember that the conclusion is where you summarize points already made, not bring up new ones.
You should be able to reiterate your answer (or thesis statement), summarize the main points, and provide importance to your reader with a call to action within 3-5 sentences.
To wrap up, remember that your conclusion is your last chance to make an impression on how you want your readers to feel or think about what they’ve just read.
You want to leave them feeling like they understand what you're trying to say and how it applies to them. The techniques we've talked about can help you do that, but ultimately it's up to you to decide what will work best for your writing. So experiment and see what feels right for you.
Whichever technique you choose, make sure that your conclusion is clear, concise, and packs a punch. Use strong language, avoid fluff, try to use an active voice, and make sure your main points are clear and summarized neatly.
Most importantly, make sure you leave your reader with something to think about. If you can do that, you'll find that your conclusions are much more effective.
Now go out there and start writing some killer conclusions!
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