How To Write A Comparison Essay

It doesn’t matter which major you belong to or at which degree level you are; there will come the point when writing a comparison essay will be inevitable. If you lack analytical abilities or aren’t adept at writing compare and contrast essays or on comparison essay topics, then you have come to the right place.


Particular subjects demand a comparison of various areas of study. It is common to be provided with assignments that involve writing analytical essays even if you are not enrolled in a composition course.

For example, in a biology course, a class is working on microorganisms. The instructor assigns everyone a compare and contrast essay on viruses and bacteria. The students are instructed such that they have to compare, write the similarities, contrast, write the differences, for both viruses and bacteria.

Now the questions arise how do you start a comparison essay? What will be the comparison essay structure? How will you formulate the comparison essay outline? A strong, well-written essay will help you establish a solid analysis of your topic.


The compare and contrast or comparison essays are the compositions that identify, analyze, and explain how two, or more than two subjects/objects, are compared. The comparison here means to list down the similarities between the subjects discussed; comparison tells what is common between the two.

Contrast refers to the differences between the subjects which are being studied. The above example can be quoted to explain the concept of contrast and comparison further. After writing the similarities, the students will differentiate between various characteristics of viruses and bacteria, which will be known as the contrast.  

Compare and contrast essays can be written for any subject or major. Writers need to focus on relevance; it helps in identifying the relevant characteristics which shall be compared and contrasted in your essay.  

A thesis statement is as essential as any other component of the essay. It helps identify relevant and irrelevant facts that you are supposed to discuss in your compare and contrast essay. Similarly, the thesis statement builds the basis of your discussion.

The thesis statement holds a key position in determining the relevant facts. The discussion is always carried out around the relevant factor mentioned in the thesis statement. It helps in keeping you focused on the right details.  

So, we can formulate that the comparison essays, according to the definition, are the kind of essays that are commonly written by the students of any major or field. The main purpose or aim of the essay is to compare and analyze various subjects according to the comparison essay topic.

Structure of essay

One might often ask the question: how do you start off a comparison essay. The comparison essay structure begins with great precision and accuracy. Just like any other essay, the compare and contrast essay starts with a precise thesis statement.  

Your thesis statement should include the subjects which are to be discussed, either it is a comparison, contrast, or compare and contrast essay. The type, which can be compared, contrast, or compare and contrast both should be indicated in the thesis statement along with the reason for such analysis.  

Always remember, your duty is to provide the reader with the complete knowledge regarding the topic and the subjects. An example of an ideal thesis statement can be as follows; Organic fruits are expensive as compared to the conventionally grown fruits, but when put to the test they are worth every extra penny.  

In this statement, we can clearly recognize the subjects compared (organic and conventionally grown fruits), and it also makes a claim that might be useful to the readers.

Structure of essay
Write A Comparison Essay

The compare and contrast essay mostly follows two basic structures:

1. Point-by-point structures

The name highlights, this structure is followed when the comparison is established on the basis of points. Each point is compared, one at a time. This method is beneficial, especially when the subjects don’t have enough characteristics to be discussed individually.

2. Subject-by-subject structure

This pattern divides your essays into multiple blocks depending on the number of subjects being discussed. The first part will be formed of the first subject, comprising of maximum characteristics/ points to be compared, while the second part consists of the second subject and likewise.  

This method is useful when the writer is carrying out the ‘lens’ comparison. An in-depth analysis of the subjects with a strong thesis statement allows you to use this structure much more easily.

It is also used when one subject is a part of your main topic, and the second subject is just here to clear any misconceptions, to stay focused, and to carry out a better understanding of the main topic.

Writing the comparison essay

Before writing any essay or piece of literature, it is necessary to think. Sometimes we use brainstorming, and other times we jot down the points. When it comes to writing a comparison essay, we use a unique way of starting the writing process.

The first thing done to kick start your essay is to create a table on a piece of paper. On one side, give the heading of ‘similarities’ and, on the other hand, write ‘differences. Now enlist down all the key points which you are supposed to discuss in this table, either it is similarities or differences, mention both in the light of your topic and subject, respectively.  

Once your list is ready, go through it. Take out all the irrelevant points and those who cannot be backed up by a solid argument. Significant points shall be enlisted separately because you need to start your essay from weak points and then develop your argument ending on a stronger discussion.

As soon as this is done, now it’s the time to put your outline and your points on a piece of paper in the form of an essay.

Compare and contrast essay introduction

Just like any other essay, the introduction of a compare and contrast essay holds the significance of making or breaking your essay right at the start. The compare and contrast essay introduction should be catchy; it should act as a hook, which helps in grabbing the attention of the reader.  

A thesis statement should also be included in the introduction to assist the reader in understanding the main theme of the essay. As mentioned earlier, your thesis statement should point-out the type of comparison essay you have opted for, with that it needs to put forward the aim of the comparison and as well as the subjects which are to be compared and contrasted.

The compare and contrast essay introduction is an essential part of the essay. The reader will stay or will go away right after reading the introduction.

The main body of the essay

This is the part where you state your points and build your argument. Every point should be clarified with the help of supporting material. The main body is where your comparison and contrast will take place.  

Two main formats, as mentioned earlier, are used in the structuring and organization of compare and contrast essay. These are; subject-by-subject and point-by-point comparisons, which are based on the subject of the comparison and points of comparison, respectively.  

The point-by-point comparison essay includes at least five starts with an introduction, then moves forward with three comparison paragraphs and ends with the conclusion. This structure may contain five paragraphs but is not limited to it as the number of paragraphs may vary according to the points of comparison.

While on the other hand, the subject-by-subject comparison essay follows a different pattern consisting of two or more parts depending on the number of subjects taken into consideration. Every subject is discussed in at least three paragraphs, which makes it an essay with a minimum of eight paragraphs, after adding the introduction and conclusion.  

After finalizing the comparison essay structure, its time to fill in the details in the right manner. Start with the weak points, and gradually move towards the stronger ones. This will not only build a good argument but will also help you in covering all types of points.

Don’t lose the attention of the reader; you need to develop a flow of your essay with the help of transition words and phrases, which will help you in developing a flow right from the start and till the end.  

Being unique in its nature, the compare and contrast essay requires a specific style of writing with a distinctive set of vocabulary. There are specific words which are used for comparing and contrasting various subjects; these set of words are known as compare and contrast words.

Once you are done with fulfilling these requirements, it means you are halfway through your essay and ready to move towards the next part, which is the conclusion.

The main body of the essay
Write A Comparison Essay

Conclusion of the essay

The final part of the final paragraph of your essay is known as the conclusion. This is taken lightly by the author because most of the time, the writers are in a hurry to end their compare and contrast essay or compare and contrast article.  

In conclusion, you need to make sure that you have ended your topic in the right way. Never forget to add your thesis statement with an explanation that will be proving it either right or wrong.  

Results are mentioned at the end. The analysis is summed up at the point of conclusion, so always close your argument before the conclusion and provide the result of the analysis. This will be a perfect closure for your essay.

Always remember not to add any extra points in the conclusion paragraph. It can make your essay vague with ruining its structure. The conclusion means closure, so always focus on ending it in a simple but charismatic way.

Comparison essay topics

The topic defines your essay, makes it attractive, and reflects its tone. The first impression is left by the topic of your essay. It can make an individual stop and go through it, or it can make them turn your writing away just like any other page.

It is important to choose the right topic because it determines the success of your comparative analysis. Choosing a comparison essay topic helps you get halfway through. Remember to make your topic as attractive as you can.

Add chunks from your thesis statement and elaborate with some detail. Don’t forget to put in a few catchy words to grab the attention of the reader. You can also put in a question in your comparison essay topic to make the reader go through the essay just for the sake of finding the answer to that question.

Compare and contrast words

Compare and contrast articles are never complete without the compare and contrast words. The comparison essay outline or the structure holds an essential place for the compare and contrast words. These sets of words are simple and, at the same time, unique in their own nature.

This vocabulary just doesn’t help in bringing the compare and contrast article or essay in its true colors, but it also helps in building a flow of the passage; that is why these are also known as transition words.

Compare and contrast words
Write A Comparison Essay

A few examples are stated as follows:


  • In the same way
  • Both and
  • Also
  • Just like (noun)
  • Likewise,
  • Compared to
  • In a like manner


  • However,
  • On the contrary
  • Unlike
  • But
  • Otherwise
  • And yet
  • Even though

Readers identify the similarities and differences on the basis of the vocabulary you use. These words are the key to understand your intentions for the readers.

Compare and contrast words
Write A Comparison Essay

Tips and tricks

Sometimes we are short of useful compare and contrast paragraph examples or the whole essay examples. One can definitely search for some well-written essays online, but this cannot guarantee that you will succeed.  

You can be blamed for plagiarism. Our best advice to you will be to read various guides online and to work hard on your paper. But if you are stuck somewhere or need a helping hand, you are always welcome by our professional team at Essaydays.  

These services are well-known among the students, especially the international scholars who often write custom papers according to their specific needs. You can always take help from such papers while writing your own compare and contrast articles.  

The compare and contrast paragraph examples of such papers are accurately providing you the perfect examples for your own paper.

Tips and tricks
Write A Comparison Essay

Finalizing your essay

The job is not done even after writing the whole essay; it is still not ready to be submitted to your supervisor or instructor. Your essays still have some mistakes and errors which you need to address.  

Before submitting your compare and contrast article, go through it thoroughly. Your essay should be checked for grammar and spelling mistakes. You need to make sure that your essay is in line with the required structuring and formatting standards.  

You need to organize the references and citations in the right place. Check your title page for any error or mistake, and after that, take a final look at your essay or paper to be certain that everything’s fine.

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