Transition Words: Why and How to Use them

January 8, 2023
January 8, 2023 Zahra Ijaz

If you have been working on creating content online, you may have come across the importance of Transition words more than once.

When creating SEO content, quality is what matters the most, and this is true when it comes to accuracy, clarity, writing skills, keyword usage, kinks, images, and more.

Using transition words in your content helps to increase readability and these words help the text flow.

Moreover, you can show your readers the relationship between phrases and paragraphs when using these words.

This is why you see readability checks in plugins like Yoast provide feedback on your use of transition words.

However, you may be wondering what you need to use them, their importance, and how you can use them.

To answer these questions, keep on reading.

Understanding Transition Words

Words like “and”, “but”, “because” etc. are transition words.

They show your reader the relationship between two phrases, sentences, or even paragraphs.

When using them, you can make it easy to understand what you are thinking and your ideas to your readers.

Moreover, they help them understand what more is coming.

Consider an example:
I pushed a chair. As a result, it fell downstairs.

When starting a sentence with words like “as a result” your readers will know two things:

  1.  What happened in the first sentence tends to cause something
  2.  The second sentence is going to describe it

When you are using the phrase “as a result” in the above example, you are showing that two separate sentences are part of one process.

transition words 1

Without reading the rest of the sentence, the ready will know what is coming.

In a way, transition words are like the glue that helps to keep your text together and without them, the text is just a collection of sentences.

However, with them, the two parts of a sentence come together, to form a meaning.

One important thing to note is that you do not always have to place transition words at the beginning of the sentence.

Consider another example:

She is a very beautiful girl. She looks stunning last night, for instance.

In the above example, the phrase “for instance” is present at the end of the sentence.

Needless to say, it still provides your reader with information on how two sentences are related.

Let’s consider another example:

I enjoyed last night because everyone told interesting stories.

In the above example, the word “because” does not join two sentences, however, it connects two clauses.

Transitions words can thus, join anything from short phrases to entire paragraphs.

Types of Transition Words

Experts divide transition words into a number of categories, depending on the types of transition you intend to make.

In some cases, they mean exactly the same, and in some cases, they mean something slightly different.

However, if you are not a native speaker or tend to struggle with language, you will need to study and practice the use of these words so that you can make better choices.

Consider the following table:

Transition Example word/phrase Example sentence
Cause and effect Therefore, as a result, so, consequently I want to sleep. Therefore, I’m going to bed.
Clarification That is to say, in other words, to clarify We’re letting you go. In other words, you’re fired.
Contrast But, however, on the other hand I do not like fruits. However, I do like bananas.
Example For example, for instance I like to relax in the evening. For instance, I enjoy watching TV.
Emphasis Above all, most importantly, certainly Exercising regularly has a number of health benefits. Above all, it keeps you healthy.
Enumeration Firstly/secondly, further, and, moreover, in addition I’m going to write a post today. In addition, I’m recording some video lessons.
Time Meanwhile, during, subsequently, after that Let’s start discussing what transition words are. After that, I’ll tell you why you should always use them.
Similarity Likewise, similarly, in the same vein She tried really hard to entertain her guests. Similarly, he put all his heart and soul into cooking a great dinner.
Summarize/conclude In conclusion, to sum up, in short In conclusion, transition words are an important aspect of SEO copywriting.

Learn more about Top Digital Publishing Platforms here.

Importance of Transition words for SEO?

Now that you understand how you can use transition words and phrases, you may be thinking “why are they important for SEO?”.

It is actually the function they have for SEO, rather than the use of words themselves.

Transition words can help to improve the readability of your content overall.

It does so by guiding the reader from point 1 to point 2 with a bridge that also helps them to understand the relationship between two connecting points.

Moreover, one of the best SEO practices consists of readability that you need to take into consideration.

When your content is not easy to read with a number of headings, subheadings, lists, and transition words, search engines are more likely to reward your content as low quality rather than high quality.

Although other parts of SEO also play a crucial role in how readers and search engines perceive your content, poor content that is not well-organized is not going to rank well.

Learn more about Search Engine Optimization: Beginner’s Guide

Improving your Content for SEO

Transition words help to enhance the flow of the sentences in your content, as well as ideas.

The good news is that in most cases like other writers you also use them.

Most of us tend to rely on these words as we speak, and they naturally tend to slip into our writing as well.

However, one crucial thing we all tend to miss is that finding the right usage of these words is also the trick.

Therefore, the use of transition words in the right place is one of the many critical things when using them.

transition words 2

One benefit you may find when writing content is the use of SEO apps and plugins that can help you keep track of the transition words in your content, as well as other SEO basics.

Plugins like Yoast and All-in-One, AIO SEO are two of the most popular options. Such tools can help you to enhance your readability and help you stay on track.

Learn more about 7 Best WordPress SEO Plugins You Need to Get More Traffic here.

Using Transition Words for SEO

After understanding the importance and use of transition words, let’s discuss how you can use them for your SEO.

Know the Transition Words: The first thing you will need to understand is how you can improve your SEO with these words.

In most cases, you would know the use of transition words in basic English language, and use them n your everyday language.

However, you can still take advantage of creating a list of all transition words, even the ones, you less frequently use.

Understand the connection between your Thoughts, Sentences, and Paragraphs: To use these words, you will need to understand how two sentences fit together.

How the statement relates to one another can help you better use these words.

to increase readability

In most cases, when writing blog posts, you have an idea of the structure of the text and also understand the use of transition words.

However, when you start writing, you begin to see what just happens, and then use them at the right place.

To do so, you can break down your test into bodies like introduction, body, and conclusion, and know what goal or aim every paragraph serves.

Then, read your content on a sentence level and find opportunities where you can use transition words and where they make sense.

However, if you tend to struggle with this, you can try reading text by other authors as well and see how they are using these words in their content.

Using Transition Words for Each Situation: Understanding how and when you can use these words is crucial to creating content that flows naturally.

However, if you tend to struggle with how these words will fit into your content, you can simply read them out loud.

Then you can know whether you can leave it or use the words in that particular sentence.

Mistakes to Avoid when using Transition Words

Some of the things you should avoid when adding transition words to your content are:

  • Avoid using a lot of transition words in your content as it can make you are writing repetitive and boring
  • You should not depend on these words alone to show that two sentences or ideas are related to one another
  • Do not keep using transition words in every other sentence.

mistakes to avoid

For example, if your paragraph tends to have five sentences, you can use at least two transition words at max to make sure that the words you are using are spread evenly across the paragraph.


When readers are going through your content, they naturally focus on transition words. These words help the readers to follow how you are thinking or what your idea is. Phrases like “because, first of all, secondly, lastly” etc. help them to navigate through your article.

In the same way, they make it easy for them to see the cause and effect of something, what the first reason is, what the second one is, and what the conclusion will be. Moreover, transition words make the piece of your content easy to read and understand.

Therefore, understanding transition words and phrases is one small step you can take to improve the quality of your content and improve your rankings. Improving readability on its own is a compelling factor you can use. If you are not comfortable using them, remember Practice makes a man perfect, and soon they will become your second nature.

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