Whether there is an ideal blog post length for SEO has been a topic of debate for as long as search engines have been on the web.
If I could borrow a phrase from Google itself, the answer to this question is “it depends”.
The two main variables to consider when determining how long your posts should be:
- the topic.
- researcher’s intention.
The ideal length for a blog about how to take the perfect selfie will be different from the ideal length for a post about the invention of the digital camera.
Why? For starters, one topic requires more information than another in order to provide a complete answer.
Say what you will about the intricacies of taking selfies, there is simply more to cover when talking about the invention of the technology that makes selfies possible.
Secondly, researcher intent is a major factor to consider in blog post length. Do they want to read a short or long article?
It is likely that someone who wants to learn about the history of digital photography is looking to consume a more substantial article than someone who is looking for tips for self-portraits.
Regardless of the fact that Periods of global attention are dwindlingLong-form content still performs very well in search.
However, short content is more than capable of ranking alongside longer content in search results. One is not necessarily better than the other.
There are hundreds of factors that go into the ranking of search results.
Is article length one of them? If so, what is the ideal word count?
Let’s look at what the stats say.
Statistics don’t lie
Statistics offer a very good starting point, but we all know they can be manipulated sometimes.
So, let’s get something straight from the start: no matter the length, there will always be good content and there will always be bad content.
Studies that examine hundreds or thousands of pages of content, like the one above, probably don’t test what’s really good, which is really bad, which is average, etc.
It analyzes article length and how that might affect how good or bad that content is ultimately based on simple practicality.
It is probably true that shorter content is easier and faster for people to read; I will not argue with that.
But does this one word answer satisfy the question/query the user is looking for? Sure, some questions can be answered in less than one word, but this isn’t usually high-quality content.
This is a one-word answer without explanation or sourcing, and Google (usually) knows that’s not enough to mark a piece of content as high-quality, educational, and resourceful.
Of course, there are one-word answers that can be considered useful and that can score the featured snippet in Google, also called Position Zero.
Additionally, good content comes in many forms; It is compelling and easy to digest often because of the rich sources and media and sensible structure/formatting.
Google wants substance, evidence, and facts from authority entities on whatever topic it may be. Turns out that longer content usually has these hidden in it.
This is a big reason why long-form content ranks better in organic search than short-form content.
According to a HubSpot study from 2021, It should be the perfect SEO blog post length 2,100 – 2,400 Lyrics.
This is much longer than the 200 or 500 word blog posts most writers or webmasters think is ideal.
Depending on the query, page 1 search results might not be flooded with blog-style content, but content that would be considered a stunt by users – and Google – certainly might include well-constructed, thoughtful blogging content that satisfies a search query.
This should be your goal as you begin planning content ideas and article structure for your website blog and other written content on the site.
What does Google say about blog post length?
Google maintains that word count is not a ranking factor.
There is an entire episode of SEO Mythbusting dedicated to the topic of page 0n content.
Martin Splitt of Google maintains that the number of words per page is not taken into account when ranking search results.
What he means by that is that Google does not collect the number of words on a page and uses that number as an indicator of quality.
A page with 1,000 words is not automatically seen as higher quality than a page with 500 words because it has twice as much content, for example.
These messages are consistent when Googlers are asked about word count, which is a topic that gets brought up quite often.
Here’s John Mueller of Google being asked about it on Twitter. he is States:
“Word count is not indicative of quality. Some pages have a lot of words that say nothing. Some pages have very few words that are very important and relevant to queries. You are the best who knows your content (hopefully) and you can decide what If he needs details.
It is important that you do not read this statement and think that you can publish minimal content because Google does not care how many words are on a page.
The number by itself means nothing to Google. However, Google’s algorithm is designed to satisfy user intent, and search intent may require a longer article over a shorter article.
What you should exclude from Google in the length of the blog post is focus on satisfying searchers. If the short post satisfies the query, there is no need to extend the duration in hopes of satisfying Google.
Quality over quantity: Don’t focus on article length
Many people place too much emphasis on the average word length of articles and the misunderstood importance of having more than a certain number of words per page to rank well.
Sure, it’s important to have some substance (and length) to the clip, but it’s not worth posting a repetitive 2,500-word review of a movie that talks about the main character’s bad hair and foul language in four different ways throughout the entirety.
The movie definitely introduced other elements and scenes that make the movie good or bad. Talk about them. Expand on real situations with feedback and in-depth explanations.
This What people search for when they search for information about a movie. “Was the movie good?” “Why was it good or bad?” ; and “Should I watch it?” are the real questions. The best movie reviews answer these three questions and don’t make them hard to spot.
Give your users what they want no matter how many words it takes to say it. If you feel like you’re writing uninteresting copy in order to inflate your word count, know that your readers can feel that too.
Furthermore, Google is able to recognize content that contributes little or no added value to the web. This means that longer posts can again hinder your site’s search if you don’t mention something useful.
Choose your target audience: people, people, keywords
Like all good web content, you must have a purpose – an objective.
You need to study your target audience. Who will search for and consume your content?
You also need to consider this person’s level of intent, too; Are they looking for basic discovery information, or are they trying to buy something right now with as few clicks as possible? Your content will reflect that person and their different stages of user intent.
Ideally, good content is planned before it is created. You must link the goals of your website/business and the content you post to the goals of the users searching for it.
If you’ve done research on your audience and still aren’t sure how long your posts should be, you can get a better idea by looking at the content they’re already consuming.
Research the keywords you want to target and examine the content that appears on the first page. The length of these blog posts is a good source of insight into what it takes to answer these queries.
The content must satisfy the user’s search query. Thus, the content must satisfy the user.
More importantly, there may very well be similar content on a website that caters to different stages of user intent for one specific topic. This is no accident.
Don’t just focus on the written page copy
Quality content goes beyond just written words. The best overall search content and respectful writing relate to the interest of the user (his search query).
Even a great video should be accompanied by a well-written script that explains the video, its concept, goals, and any other resources that might improve the content to better assist the user.
This is our ultimate goal as content strategists: to deliver the best information, in the most appropriate format, on the right platform.
For some topics, a blog post may not be the best way to communicate information to researchers. A detailed tutorial, for example, might be more appropriate for an explanatory video.
Content such as an interview with an industry expert may be more preferable to be consumed in audio format rather than plain text.
Sometimes the written word is the best way to communicate information. But other topics are more visually appropriate, and require images or videos. Sometimes, audio files will be the best kind of rich media.
When using visual or audio content, be sure to accompany it with written content that can connect the dots and understand everything on the page, as well as help users find your content.
This isn’t just good practice for readers, it’s a must for Google, too. The word count is irrelevant, to say the least some Written content is required to provide context for images, videos, and audio presentations.
Your content can take many forms, and it can be discovered and consumed in many ways.
Your goal shouldn’t be to write 2,500 words in a blog post because that seems the “perfect length” to rank well in organic search.
If you’re worried about reaching the perfect SEO blog post length, you’re totally missing the point.
Your goal should be to provide the best, most useful (and optimized) version of your content for your target audience that matches their intent.
Your audience will appreciate it – and your website analytics will reflect that.
- Word Count and SEO: What Content Marketers Need to Consider
- SEO Content Writing vs SEO Content Writing: What’s the Difference?
- SEO Writing: Top 47 Tips for Mastering a Common Art
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