Audience labels

Recommendations

We

In the ‘about us’ section of the organisation page, lead with ‘we’ – it will be very obvious who the ‘we’ is on this page.

If it is clear who 'we' are, use that.

It’s not obvious who ‘we’ is in all content. Users could arrive at an H2 heading from the navigation bar, or skim read from the top until they find the section they want.

Using ‘we’ is fine, as long as you’re making it clear as much as possible who the ‘we’ is.

Do not assume the audience will know.

Each time you use ‘we’, make sure you’ve already used the full name of the organisation in that specific section.

When a third party is heavily referred to in the content, in addition to the organisation whose website it is, using 'we' can become confusing.

You

'You' can be confusing for readers if the content is aimed at multiple audiences.

Usability evidence

'Comprehension of pronouns', 1980
https://journals.sagepub.com/doi/pdf/10.1080/14640748008401161

GOV.UK Content design: planning, writing and managing content, 2016
https://www.gov.uk/guidance/content-design/writing-for-gov-uk

'Is this my interface or yours?', 2016
https://medium.com/@jsaito/is-this-my-interface-or-yours-b09a7a795256

Office for National Statistics, Writing for the web, Tone and Voice, 2018
https://style.ons.gov.uk/category/writing-for-the-web/tone-and-voice/#ons

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