Finding the Ideal Length for Your Next Blog Post

Photo of a man browsing a blog on a tablet.

The most effective blog posts aren’t just dashed off—they are well-planned in advance, as part of your editorial calendar. One of the most important aspects of planning your blog is deciding what length your posts should be. This isn’t as simple a question as you might think; the length of a post has an effect on its SEO value, and hence its usefulness to your business. Different blog lengths also dictate how much detail your blog can offer, and some subjects will warrant a more thorough explanation than others. Here’s how to decide how long you should make your next blog post.

When in doubt, longer is better.

In terms of SEO practices, longer posts are the way to go. As a rule, search engine algorithms tend to prefer longer word counts, so the more in-depth posts you have on the blog, the better! Realistically, however, you probably will not be posting 1,500-word blog posts every day. As long as you space the long-form posts out and incorporate plenty of them into your calendar, your blog should benefit from the value of this longer content.

Keep your shorter posts substantial.

When you do post shorter posts—such as posts that are 300 to 500 words in length—it’s important to make sure that you are providing your readers with quality content. Shorter posts shouldn’t be fluffy, and they should still be designed to engage your readers. Also, don’t drop much below 300 words in length—if your blog contains too many short posts, it could have a detrimental effect on your SEO.

Don’t let length overrule quality.

While long blog posts will be helpful to your SEO efforts, keep in mind that creating quality content is even more important. Your blog posts should revolve around engaging ideas, first-rate writing, and information that will be useful to your readers. In other words, your blog should be fun and interesting to read. If you are letting quality lapse for the sake of expanding the length of your posts, your readers won’t have much reason to stick around.

Match the length to the topic.

When you’re writing a longer blog post, it’s important to make sure that you’ve selected a topic that justifies the length. If you’re writing about a narrower issue, or one that is easily covered in, say, 500 words, you shouldn’t try to inflate that post into 1,500 words by adding fluff. Rather, you should write shorter posts for that subject, and then pick more wide-ranging topics for the long posts. An editorial calendar will come in handy, because it will allow you to see all of your topics at a glance, so you can analyze which types of topics lend themselves to more in-depth treatment.

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