When it comes to writing the perfect blog post, the length is always important. New bloggers are especially uncertain about the ideal length of a blog post while some write the minimum number of words to get their message across.
Should blog posts be short and concise, or long and packed full of information? Will readers go through the entire article? What should I include in my post?
These are all a few basic questions that every blogger has asked at some point. These are all valid questions and it’s important to know the answers.
So, does the blog post’s length matter?
In short, yes. But only if the content is good.
This can’t be stressed enough. You can write a 5,000-word blog post and still struggle to achieve great rankings or get people to share. On the other hand, you can have great content in a short blog post of 500 words and blast to the top page of Google.
Why? Because quality content matters.
Let’s go a bit further into why blog post length matters and how you can determine the ideal length that each of your blog posts should be.
Why word count has become so important?
Not long ago, the ideal word count was around 600 – 800 words. I some cases most blog posts were even shorter. But things have changed significantly during the last few years and long-form content is now more preferred by search engines all over.
One study analysed articles and bog posts to find the correlation between social media shares and content length. The results? Content that is between 3,000 and 10,000 words tend to get by far the most shares compared to content that is shorter, below 1,000 words.
SerpIQ also had a similar study and they found that the ‘sweet spot’ for content length was around 2,450 words. Furthermore, Backlinko did a study in 2016 that found that the ideal word count for content dropped slightly, and the average word count for results on the first page of Google was around 1,900 words.
Although there are slight variances in the ‘ideal’ content length, it’s safe to say that long-form content is preferred and gives the best results. Experts agree that this won’t change any time soon, so longer content is what every blogger should focus on.
Why long-form content is so important:
- It covers a topic in depth
- It creates the perception of high quality
- Long-form content is perfect for scanning
It’s a well-known fact that most people simply scan through a web page or blog, and don’t read every word. In fact, it is estimated that users only read about 2% of the content on a page.
This is why your layout is so important; since they don’t have time to read the entire thing, they will scan through the pages, looking at sub-headings, bullet lists and images.
Successful bloggers like Neil Patel only create long-form content these days and the results speak for itself. So, the days of 500-word blog posts are over.
What is the perfect blog post length?
It depends on the industry, too.
FinTech: 2,000 – 2,500 Words
With global investment having increased from $930 million in 2008 to a staggering $12 billion in 2014, financial technology topics are always more complex these days. They require substantial depth to be relevant and interesting to their educated audience.
Finance: 2,100 – 2,500 Words
If you are in the finance industry, around 2,500 is the number of words you should focus on. Some news articles are often shorter than this, but feature pieces and even interviews go over 3,000 words these days.
Sales: 2,500 – 2,700 Words
The sales industry is also quite diverse and can cover many areas, but in general, these articles perform well if they are longer and around 2,500 words each. This was determined by looking at some of the most successful posts in the industry. Sales content are also typically seen as whitepapers and PDF documents.
Real Estate: 1,800 – 1,900 Words
Another very popular industry, real estate sees longer content, but not as long as other industries. With the real estate industry worth more than $200 trillion, it’s definitely a competitive market and content should be top notch too. You will be competing with popular websites and listing directories so your content should always be well-written, and easy to read with images and other visual traits.
Technology: 800 – 1,000 Words
Tech-related content is also among those that require slightly less length. If you look at content from the most popular sites like TechCrunch, you’ll notice shorter, fact-packed articles rather than longer forms of content.
Marketing & Advertising: 2,500 – 3,000 Words
This is an industry that loves long-form content. Some of the top performing blogs like Moz, Backlinko, HubSpot and Neil Patel all make use of long-form content, and very successfully too. Content marketing is a popular and very effective trend and this means a lot of content. If you have valuable, interesting and visually appealing long-form content, you’ll be a step above the rest when it comes to marketing and advertising audiences.
We’ve established that long-form content is the way to go. However, there are a few things to keep in mind. You should always write quality content that is factual and easy to read, and always consider your industry. Writing for your specific audience is key, and this may differ.
The type of industry you are in will make a difference to the length of content that generally works, but one thing remains: long-form content is here to stay.
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