How to Write a Persuasive Essay: Step-by-Step Academic Guide

Persuading people is not easy. After all, most of us are too stubborn to accept the positions of others if we disagree with them initially. However, it all depends on how convincing one is. Tutors assign persuasive assignments to develop a skill of persuasion in their students.

It is necessary to gather facts and arguments to prove your position to others. Anyway, it is critical to respect the opinion of the opposing side. Thus, writing a persuasive essay is a complex art, and we will try to explain how to master it in this post. Grab valuable persuasive essay tips from the top academic writers online.

What Is a Persuasive Essay? Definition and Purposes

The primary step, to begin with, is a persuasive essay definition. Without knowing the purposes of a paper you write, it is impossible to achieve success and high mark. A persuasive essay is a type of academic assignment that aims to present an author’s position towards the specific question and convince the target audience of his or her truth. While in argumentative writing, it is enough to state your position, in a persuasive one, it is also important to persuade the reader. That is what your teacher expects to see: a sound argumentation based on the credible sources.

How to Start a Persuasive Essay with a Bang

There are many ways to start writing an essay. As a persuasive paper should be engaging from the first few lines to catch the eye of a reader, we recommend starting with a hook instead of introducing the topic immediately. Several types of hooks exist. You should be careful when choosing the most appropriate one for your paper. It depends on the tone and voice of your work. A hook could be:

Those are the most popular ways to start an academic paper. Watch out as it makes no sense to begin a sensitive topic like abortion or gender discrimination with some silly jokes. You should respect your audience in any case.

How to Write a Good Persuasive Essay: Selecting a Topic

The primary secret of writing a good essay is choosing a proper topic. It should be related to the subject you study. At the same time, it should be relevant, up-to-date, and engaging. One should choose something that people recently discussed instead of outdated topics the solutions to which were already offered.

In any case, no matter whether you have a specific topic assigned or not, it all begins with research. Surf the web trying to get as many ideas for inspiration as possible. You can also watch TV and news to get some good points. Put them all down on a piece of paper to discuss later with your friends or family. This process is called brainstorming, and it is very useful.

Once your sheet is full of ideas, leave only the best five. Decide which topics make an interest for you. Find out whether you have enough supporting evidence and information on each of the topic. Finally, pick the keywords and key phrases to use in your title and paper’s body. Before starting to work on a specific topic, ask your teacher to confirm the idea of your choice.


Read more: 101 Persuasive Essay Topic Ideas


Tips for Writing a Persuasive Essay from Gurus of Writing

Below, you can find a step-by-step process of writing a great persuasive paper. We also included some useful tips to help you succeed. Once you are done, do not forget to revise the paper: proofread and edit it alone or send your draft to the expert editors online.

How to Structure a Persuasive Essay: General Template

Most of the academic essays have the same structure template to follow. They all should have an introduction, body, and conclusion. While an intro and conclusion consist of a single paragraph in all situations, a body can consist of 3-5 or even more paragraph depending on the word count limit and topic or question difficulty.

Extra Persuasive Essay Structure Elements and Format

In most cases, a student will have to develop a references page as an integral part of a persuasive assignment. Depending on the format, a title page may be required. If you write a paper in MLA, it is enough to include your name and last name, course name, school’s name, and a date before the title of your work. However, in APA and most of the other citation formats, you will have to create a separate title or cover page with more details.

Anyway, not to fall off the topic and follow the structure, one has to develop an outline. Without it, a student risks facing the so-called writer’s block and lose the point during the writing process.

Persuasive Essay Outline Example

So, we agreed on the point that students need an outline to follow while working on a paper. The structure template works for an outline as well. To make you understand it better, we decided to share a specific outline example with you.

  • Introduction (a brief attention grabber, both sides of the argument, a powerful thesis statement)
  • Body made of three paragraphs (the structure of each is the same: topic sentence, evidence based on credible, up-to-date sources, explanation of the evidence on connection to the argument, paragraph conclusion to solidify the topic sentence/argument)
  • Conclusion (restated thesis statement, a summary of the arguments, wrapped up neat conclusion, and some forecasts for the future or solutions)
  • Bibliography (or Works Cited or References page depending on the chosen format)

How to Create a Persuasive Essay Introduction

Once you decide on the hook sentence, move to the background information. Introduce the topic and specify the origins of the question. Tell the audience why this specific topic is important to be observed. Try to capture and maintain the reader’s interest by crafting a solid thesis statement – the central argument of the entire writing that one has to defend and prove to the readers.

Working on a Persuasive Essay Body

In this part, a writer should back up the viewpoint with hard facts and credible evidence. One should be ready to anticipate the opposing opinions and offer counter-arguments. It is critical to sound objective no matter how sure you are in your position. The elements of a good body include:

You can find these elements in primary and secondary sources. For example, use books, scholarly articles, newspapers, journals, websites, interviews, polls, etc.

Finish with a Strong Persuasive Essay Conclusion

The main goal of any paper conclusion is to leave a strong, long-lasting impression on a reader. Come up with a meaningful personal comment once you paraphrase a thesis statement and sum up the main points of the body paragraphs. You should also remind the audience why the question was so important to study in-depth or why it was critical to solve the specific problem. Stress how your work can contribute to further research on the issue.

How to End a Persuasive Essay to Leave Impression

Before we finish with these persuasive essay guidelines, we would like to give a hint on how to end your paper so that people stay impressed and motivated to take further steps towards the problem research and solution. What you can do is involve a hook once again. This time, the best idea would be to end up with a rhetorical question like, “Would you like to guarantee a safe future for your kids? Then, why don’t you start to take care of the environment today?” Never introduce new information in conclusion!

That is basically what you have to know about persuasive papers. For more details and help from best essay writers in America, you can always turn to professional persuasive essay writing services online.