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Text length: How Long Should a Blog Length for SEO in 2023?
Blog Length for SEO?Is it really true?
Longer blog length performs better than shorter blog posts— Backlinko
That might be true in many ways! But does that work for you too?
We don’t think any magic number exists that can help you crack the search engine algorithm. It’s tempting to write more and get those extra keywords inside the post.
But does that really help?
I was confused just like you.
So, I started doing research and saw what others had to say about this.
In this post, I will be taking you through some research studies done on this subject and how you can actually find your own sweet spot.
What Research Says About Ideal Blog Post Length
In 2015, Moz found that posts between 3000-10000 words gained most social media shares and engagement.
Neil Patel did an enormous study bringing out the ideal blog post length for different industries. Check the table below showing word counts of blogs in relation to industries.
Length of best performing blogs
Home & Garden
As you can see, every industry has a specific length that works for them. The gadget industry has the least length out of all the industry. I’m guessing people love videos and practical demonstration more than written content in this industry.
Conclusion from the research studies: Mostly longer posts perform better on average in most industries.
We will now head over to the next section that will discuss why longer content performs better.
Why Longer Blog Posts Perform Better?
Have More Depth and Facts on the Topic
People who search on google for seeking information will almost always share and spend more time on blog posts that provide the most value.
Long form content provides more in-depth information on a topic. It also encourages readers to learn more on relevant topics. So, by the end of reading that piece, a reader becomes completely satisfied with the answer and might as well become a subscriber.
In many cases, thin content can gain google penalty as well piss readers off.
Think about it this way.
You have a new dog at home and now you want to train him. You get on google and search “how to train my dog” and find a 300 word post pointing out the techniques in 2-3 lines. You will hate that blog like anything.
Adds More External Links to Make the Content Valuable
External links are common in blog posts. But when you are writing a longer one, you will place more external links to authoritative posts.
These links help you to make your statement and analysis more credible. Users will get the idea that you research well and talk about facts!
This strategy also gives a strong signal to google and your post might have a greater chance to top the SERPs.
Convinces Readers to Take an Action
If a new visitor visits your site, you want him to convey as much information to trigger an action.
With shorter posts, your options are very limited. You don’t have the resources nor the benefit of extra words to influence the reader.
Longer blog posts give you the freedom to use text, Call to action buttons and other links to generate more actions.
Let’s take the example of “how to train your dog” again. If you want to redirect your reader to a dog trainer to generate income from affiliate sales, you will have to make a more intimate relationship.
Detailed posts are the only way to convert a new visitor into a buyer.
How to Find the Right Length for Your Blog – Blog Length for SEO
1. Rely More on Search Intent
If you can’t understand the search intent of your reader for a particular keyword or for your industry, you will have a hard time cracking the SERP.
You will have to figure out what satisfies the intent of the user.
Are they looking for a quick answer? If yes, then a featured snippet will be enough for them. And.. you will have to produce a blog post that appears in google’s zero position or featured snippet.
If your target user is looking for an in-depth guide, you will have to produce a lengthy blog post. Short posts won’t work here!
Take a look at the blog lengths for the keyword “how to tie a knot” on google.
Apart from the second result, all the other sites have a content length of 2500+. The second result uses animation to meet the search query. So, that compliments the use of short texts.
2. Perform Individual Analysis on Keywords
This step is much similar to the previous one. If you have a list of 100 keywords, it’s tempting to write longer blog posts for each of them to gain rankings.
But… not all of them require long posts. Some of those keywords might perform better for shorter posts.
Finding out how long your blog post should be is definitely a part of your keyword research.
If you have already published quite a lot of posts that are performing well on the SERP, you can use the “Top 10 Average Method”.
Here’s how to do it.
- Carefully choose your top 10 best performing posts. It’s better to choose posts that have keywords with similar search intent.
- Calculate the length of each of the posts and add them up.
- Subtract all the word count of headers, footers and other fillers.
- Divide the result by 10 and you get your ideal blog post length!!
You can use the exact same formula in a different way. Instead of adding up the length of your own posts, add the length of posts from the SERP for a specific keyword. The final result should give an assumption of how big or small your post should be.
3. Get Creative and Innovate
Data and analysis can keep you on track. However, there is still room for some innovation here.
If you find the top 5 ranked posts have huge length and there’s no way you can produce something better, you can add videos, images and animation to make yourself standout.
Sometimes, you can outrank those giant posts with a short and well-directed post.
In many cases I have seen a 1000 word post outranking 2000 and 3000 word post. Use your own logic to come to a conclusion.
More Important Things Than Blog Length - Blog Length for SEO
1. Create unique pieces
The more I do online research, the more I know the importance of a unique piece of content.
Yes, people might be searching with the same old keywords but they want a different perspective on the topic. If you can give that, your post can gain more traction.
When I talk about uniqueness, it doesn’t have to be totally new information. You can show uniqueness through the following ways:
Build research-driven in-depth guides
If you are not new to content marketing or SEO, you might well know blogs like Backlinko, Moz and Quicksprout.
These blogs create long-form in-depth definitive guides that give users everything they need to know about on a topic.
Take a look at this post! It’s got 5k+ shares. Why? Because the post provides a complete picture of content marketing. It’s packed with data, stats and vital information.
And can you create such a post with minimum budget and resources?
- Narrow down your topic and cover a specific niche. In that way, your topic will be more unique and gain more readers.
- Create an awesome outline that covers everything you want to talk about.
- Find an experienced writer and designer. An experienced writer will give you polished work and a designer will make your post look visually appealing.
Custom images can make you standout
If you have the budget, custom images are super easy to create. But one or two such images can really make your post exclusive.
Even though you are talking about the same old shit, it will appear to users as something new just because of the images.
Have you ever seen Wikihow.com? They write how to articles. But the custom images make their posts more valuable than any other site talking about the same topic.
Can’t beat with text? Go for infographics
If you think you can’t beat your competitors with just text and images, you have an even better way— infographics!!
According to a Backlinko study, infographics gain 25.8% more backlinks than videos and even how-to posts.
Have a look at this infographic below! How can you avoid such illustrations? Even if you are focused on written content, adding an infographic will boost the results.
2. Make Longer Posts Feel Shorter
You want to go with the “Longer Content wins more shares and links” FORMULA? But to be honest, users don’t have the time to read those posts.
You will have to find ways to help them skim and gain the maximum information in a short span of time.
Here’s how to do it:
- Create lists posts with lots of bullet points.
- Break long paragraphs into shorter 2-3 sentence paragraphs. You can also stick with Seth Godin style— the one sentence paragraphs! This technique will make your Flesch reading ease score a lot better.
- Use copywriting techniques like Bucket Brigades. These are little words and phrases used within a blog post to keep people reading and hold their attention for longer. Some of the examples of bucket brigades are: Look:, Here’s the deal, you are probably wondering:, what’s new?, etc.
3. A Better Intro Can Result in More “time on Site”
Higher bounce rates can diminish your rankings on Google. The “time on site” is a ranking factor that you simply can’t ignore.
A good way to decrease bounce rate is to write a killer intro that will hook your readers right from the start.
Lengthy and boring intros will get your readers to close the tab right away! Not a good sign for your business.
4. Targeted-keyword Can Keep You in Track
I have seen many fellow marketers and writers write mindlessly on a topic without targeting any specific keyword. This is a great mistake.
If google or other search engines can’t understand what your post is about, it won’t ever top the rankings.
Keyword research and content planning is far more crucial than the length of your blog posts.
5. Gain More Shares and Links
There are a plethora of ways you can gain links or shares for your blog posts. Yes, the posts should have important substance and fulfill the search intent.
The more links you gather, the better the performance and higher the rankings.
Google still values links pointing out to a site. So, create a link building strategy that works for you!
As a general rule, you should write longer posts between 1500-3000 words. But that’s not rocket science which will make you crack the search engines.
Do research on individual topics, keywords, on page SEO and competitor analysis, you should be able to come up with blog length estimation for each of your future posts.
If you follow this post from top to bottom, I’m sure you will know about the blog post length best practices.
At last, if you feel that this blog is really helpful, do share and comment On Pro Alpha Tech
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