This is a common question I get asked when I speak with anyone about inbound and content marketing. Depending on the situation, the person asking is either new to blogging and has no idea, or maybe they have been at it for a while and have heard a few different answers.
In either case, this is what I tell them.
The Blog Post Needs To Be As Long As It Needs To Be
Now, that can be taken a couple of different ways, so allow me to clarify.
In the world we live in today, especially with people consuming content more and more on mobile devices, brevity is key!
These days, people have very little time, and even less attention spans. They are laser focused on finding the answers they need, and finding it fast. If your content is too long, you run the risk of a visitor bouncing from your post and not consuming it at all. So, keep your posts short, sweet, to the point, and actionable.
Now, with that said, generally speaking, a good rule of thumb is to have your blog post between 350-500 words. This should be plenty of copy to get your point across, and provide value and answers to your readers.
Now, some experts recommend 700-1000 words, or more, per blog post and that is perfectly fine as well. In fact, long form content does perform great as far as search engines are concerned. Again, it just depends on the topic and your audience. If you have a highly technical post, for example, you may need 1000+ words. So go for it!
Stay On Topic, Stay On Topic
When you are writing your blog post, you want to make sure to keep it on topic as best as you can. If you see that you are veering off and talking about many things, consider breaking your thoughts into a few different topical blog posts. This is great if you have a hard time coming up with blog post topic ideas.
Focus On Helpful Content, Rather Than Number Of Words
Keep your audience, or buyer personas, in mind when you write. Focus on getting to the point, and answering the question at hand. If you have a post that is shorter than 350 words, go with it. A shorter post answering the topic at hand is better than no post at all.
Some Additional Tips
- Vary length of all of your posts, and see what performs best for your audience. Short, medium and long posts will provide variation and hopefully help keep your readers engaged
- Edit your copy, and then edit it again. Take out unnecessary words or sentences that do not need to be there. Your readers will appreciate less fluff
- Do not write for the search engines, write for your audience. Speak in their terms, and make the post as long as it needs to be.
In case you were wondering, this post is 509 words long.
Until next time,