How long should a blog post be? The short answer is – it depends. The ideal length of your blog post depends on your industry, the topic, and the type of post.
Want to know more?
This article will cover everything about the optimal length for your blog article, followed by the benefits of long blog posts and much more.
So, keep on reading to learn more.
There really isn’t one right answer to how long your articles need to be.
However, experts have conducted various research and case studies to determine the optimal blog article length.
And that’s what this section will cover. Here, you’ll find out what the ideal length of a blog article is, according to research.
AppSumo’s Noah Kagan and the folks of BuzzSumo teamed up to conduct a study on why content goes viral. Here’s what they found after analyzing 100 million posts:
- Blog posts with a word count ranging between 3000 and 10,000 tend to grab more shares.
- There were 16x more articles with less than 1k words compared to blog posts with 2000 words. Additionally, articles with a minimum of 2000 words have a good chance of becoming viral.
SEMrush also conducted research, where they analyzed over 22,000 blog posts to determine the best practices of experts.
And this is what the study revealed about the ideal article length:
- As per the research, the average content length is 810 words.
- SEMrush, however, recommends 1,137 words as the average article length, based on rival’s content appearing on Google’s top pages.
Medium is a publishing platform that prioritizes reader engagement a lot. And so, to determine how to best foster it, they ran a study on the best content length to improve engagement.
They found the following results:
- As per the study, an excellent blog article takes 7 minutes to read. Anything beyond that time leads to a decline in engagement. This, according to Buffer, translates to around 1600 words. If the content has multiple visuals, it can be less.
- However, Medium advises that not all blog content has to be seven minutes, as they found several variations in their study. Instead, they recommend writing as much as needed to get your point across.
SerpIQ conducted a study (no longer available online, but its findings are) in 2012 to find out the optimal content length.
For that, they analyzed the average blog piece length of every Google’s top page for 20,000+ keywords. The research found the following results:
- The average word count of Google’s #1 article was 2416 words.
- On the contrary, the content in the #10 place was 2032 words on average.
Online marketing expert Neil Patel also wrote an article on the ideal content length. In his piece, he mentions the following:
- Content length matters and long-form articles perform better, provided they’re of high quality.
- There’s an optimal word count for every industry ( based on the evidence he discovered online and his experience):
- Finance: 2100-2500
- FinTech: 2000-2150
- Manufacturing: 1700-1900
- Retail: 1500-1700
- Sales: 2500-2700
- Home and garden: 1100-1200
- Real estate: 1800-1900
- Tech: 800-1000
- Advertising/Marketing: 2500-3000
- Gadgets: 300-500
- Fashion: 800-950
- Healthcare: 2000-2150
- Food: 1400-1900
- Recruiting: 900-1000
- Film: 1500-1700
- Travel: 1500-1850
HubSpot also analyzed their own blog posts to determine the factors that make them linkable, shareable, and boost traffic.
Here’s what they found after analyzing over 6000 articles:
- Articles with 2500 words are highly shareable and gain the most backlinks.
- Content with 2250-2500 words generates the maximum search traffic.
CoSchedule also analyzed their top-ranking blog posts and found the following results concerning an ideal post length:
- Blog posts with 4066 words on average have a #3 Google ranking and were highly shared.
- The minimum length is 2000+ words. However, word count isn’t the only decisive factor. Relevance and quality matter as well, especially when it comes to social shares.
- A blog article should contain a minimum of 300 words to rank.
- 1000+ words blog pieces tend to rank well. More content allows Google to understand better what your article is about, allowing it to rank higher in search engines.
- However, good writing skills are essential to make your long-form content valuable. Otherwise, your articles would scare off your readers instead of bringing them in. Team Yoast also advises you to make your blog posts readable.
Each year OrbitMedia conducts a survey with bloggers to determine trends in the world of blogging.
Their recent study reveals the following findings concerning the ideal content length:
- The average content length is 1416 words now, which is 41% more than what it was three years back.
- 1500+ words blog articles are quite common nowadays. Their study also suggests that longer blog posts perform better. However, OrbitMedia advises that not every article needs to be long. According to them, your content should only be as long as needed to cover the article topic in detail.
Almost every blog piece on the ideal article length will suggest that it depends on the topic, the type of post, and the industry.
But, what is the minimum word count for a blog post?
Well, this will also depend on the topic and the type of post you plan on writing.
Nonetheless, blog posts should have a minimum word count of 300 words, according to Yoast. On the contrary, HubSpot recommends writing longer posts.
So, ultimately it all comes down to this fact – If you feel you can cover the topic entirely in 300, 500, 800, or 1000 words, then go for it.
To give you a clear idea, let’s look at the correlation between the article length and the type of post it’s typically used for:
Blog articles with 200-300 words are hardly ever recommended. Even if they’re used, it’s mostly for encouraging engagement and discussions.
Keep in mind that this length is not ideal for social media shares or SEO.
Articles with this word count are regarded as smaller blog pieces. However, some say they’re the minimum length.
If you’re planning to write education posts, this word count range isn’t ideal. Rather they’re great for short, digestive reads for people who are less invested.
They’re quite good for engagement and social shares. But, if your goal is to improve SEO or website traffic, this length is too short.
This word count range is quite common in newspaper and professional journalism articles. This length is also ideal for encyclopedia and product description entries.
Additionally, articles with this word count window are great for backlinks, shares and improving SEO slowly.
This length is pretty common for the “What is…” type of blog content. If you aim for this word count, you can expect more social shares and backlinks.
Based on your audience, writing articles within this word count range can help improve lead conversion. Plus, this length is ideal for driving organic site traffic through partnership, CTA (Call-to-Action), and link building.
This word count is ideal for “How to…” blog posts. In addition, articles with 1700-2100 words are also great for organic traffic and lead conversion.
This is the golden word count range for search engines. Listicles are the most popular article types written in about 2300-2500 words.
These post types are generally educational and in-depth, which makes them rank higher on searches.
Thorough “how-to” guides and pillar pages are the most popular types of content written in about 4000 words or more.
Such blog posts are comprehensive pieces that cover the topic thoroughly to build authority.
To sum up, longer blog pieces are great for social shares, SEO, and traffic, while shorter articles are usually ideal for engagement and comments.
Are you wondering why the length of your blog pieces matters? Well, in short, it matters because it improves the chances of your content ranking higher on Google searches.
And long, relevant, and high-quality articles with 1500+ words tend to have a much better chance of ranking higher on search engines.
In fact, more and more bloggers are starting to publish blog pieces with 1000+ words nowadays.
Yes, writing longer content indeed takes more time as compared to shorter ones. However, if you factor in the benefits of longer-form articles, it makes sense to go for it.
So, what are the benefits of writing or publishing long-form content?
First, longer articles offer more value and allow you to answer all the questions your readers have in one place.
In addition, longer blog content helps you establish authority in your industry or niche. When you publish a long, quality blog piece covering a topic in detail, your readers get the impression that you know what you’re talking about.
Following are some other advantages of longer blog pieces:
The first advantage of writing longer blog posts is that it helps generate more social media shares.
In fact, articles with 1000 to 2000 words get 56 percent more social shares and 77 percent more backlinks than articles with less than 1k words. This can help establish your authority, whether you’re writing for your blog or guest posting.
People tend to find more value in long-form content, making them more likely to share such pieces with their network.
When you publish longer blog pieces, the more time your readers will spend on your site. This, in turn, will make it more likely for them to read more of your other awesome articles.
In fact, people tend to stay 40 percent longer on a page with long-form articles compared to an average page.
While the visitors will eventually leave the site, you can use the extra time they spend on your page to grow your email list.
How so? You can rely on OptinMonster’s exit-intent popup tool to encourage your site visitors to join your mailing list before they leave.
When your visitors become email subscribers, you can make them come to your website again.
To ensure your site gets more visitors, optimizing your blog content for SEO is essential. This includes creating readable URLs, adding internal links, using relevant keywords, ensuring your site is SEO-friendly, etc.
However, the length of your articles also plays a role in determining how well your posts rank on Google’s search engines.
So, how long should a blog post be for SEO?
Longer posts (1k words or more) tend to rank more easily.
Content with about 2500 words usually ranks best, according to CoSchedule.
Another study by Capsicum Mediaworks found similar results. They found that most of the content on Google’s top ten search results was about 2000-2500 words long on average.
Writing long-form articles helps in improving your SEO ranking, allowing more people to find your blog pieces online.
Simply knowing the advantages of long blog pieces won’t do you any good. It’s just as important to know how to produce a killer long-form article for your blog.
Therefore, this section will cover seven useful tips so you can craft killer long-form content for more shares.
So, let’s get started.
The first key step to writing an effective long-form piece is to research beforehand.
Doing so will help prevent you from getting overwhelmed. Before you begin writing, make sure you completely understand the topic, your goals, how your competitors did it, and your target audience.
A great way would be to read the top ten articles that pop up on search results. You can also have a look at Google’s “People also ask” suggestions, as it’ll give you more ideas about what to cover in your blog post.
There’s a keyword or phrase for every topic you pick to write on. These keywords are what people use to search relevant blog posts, articles, or even business sites.
So, it’s important to find keywords that you can strategically use in your blogs.
Don’t know how to perform keyword research?
Keyword planners and blogging tools like Google keyword planner, Semrush, or Ahrefs can help you find topic-related keywords of high-search volumes.
Use the keywords in your title, introduction, meta description, and a few more times throughout the article.
In doing so, the search engines will understand that your blog piece is closely correlated to the search phrases. As such, it becomes more likely for your post to rank.
Creating a detailed outline will help you write your blog post faster, especially when working on a longer piece.
During this preparation, make sure you add bullet lists of what each section will cover, where you’ll place the keywords, and which other blogs you intend to link to. Doing so will make it much easier and quicker for you to write the article.
Another best practice to write killer long-form blog posts is to use clear headings and sections.
Doing so will help your readers skim through the article and easily find the information that’s most relevant and valuable to them. Use about 2 to 10 words for the headings.
Good headings will also encourage your readers to stay longer on your page as it’ll help them navigate through the article easily. Plus, it’ll help them find exactly what they’re looking for.
Including images in your blog posts can offer you great benefits. For instance, studies show that bloggers who used 10+ pictures in their articles reported stronger results.
Moreover, images help you separate large texts, thereby preventing your readers from getting bored or overwhelmed. They’re also a great way to get your points across.
Pro tip: Make sure you include alt text in your pictures for both image SEO purposes and accessibility.
Longer blog pieces must be logical, easy to follow, and well-organized.
Incorporating both bullet points and numbered lists will help you get your thoughts across clearly.
Like you use headings to separate large blog posts into smaller parts, use numbered lists and bullet points to expand the points within sections.
For instance, if you’re writing a guide outlining different steps, listicles are incredibly helpful in effectively explaining the necessary steps.
Keeping your paragraphs to about 100 words and covering a single idea per paragraph is a good idea.
Well, your readers can get intimidated looking at long paragraphs and likely avoid reading them altogether.
Also, use transition words for different points that aren’t closely related to one another. The goal here is to keep your readers engaged and let them know what your next paragraph will cover.
It’s also worth noting that about 60 percent of searches are done on smartphones.
On mobile devices with a smaller screen, paragraphs can look longer. So, break up those long texts into multiple parts accordingly.
This section will introduce you to the best practices to determine the most appropriate length for your content.
Plus, you’ll also learn about what you should include or focus on for different word counts.
Curious? Keep on reading and find out.
You need to determine what goals you wish to achieve through your blog piece. It could be ranking on search, more shares, or driving sales.
For instance, if you wish to rank your keywords or boost site traffic, your content length will play a big role.
Longer blog pieces with videos and images perform better on search engines, which leads to high organic CTR (Click-through rates).
Moreover, charts, infographics, screenshots, post banners, and visuals can help make your content “sticky.”
As such, your readers will spend more time exploring your blog piece rather than jumping off to another site to find something more engaging.
That said, if you want to educate your audience or increase conversion, word count isn’t the most critical factor.
So, knowing your goals is important to determine the appropriate length of your blog posts.
Pay attention to how your competitor’s blog posts are ranking. That’s what HustlerSource does, says Dylan Gordon.
Find out all the competitors’ blog articles ranking for a particular keyword and see where you can improve.
Has their content thoroughly answered the query, or is it thin? Would using a video help solve this specific problem? Make sure you include all the missing pieces.
According to Dylan, they like to keep their posts at about 1500 plus words. However, if it’s not necessary, they don’t go about adding more content for the sake of increasing word count.
Remember content length is essential for SEO. However, you shouldn’t base it on arbitrary numbers. Instead, your word count should depend on two factors.
First, consider how well your article explains the point or answers the “question” of the topic. You should also focus on the competitive landscape.
Another best practice to consider when figuring out the ideal content length for the topic is the search intent of your readers. That means trying to understand what they’re looking for.
Bruce Hogan from SoftwarePundit highlights that different queries come with different intents.
Sometimes, your readers may want brief information, and sometimes they might be searching for an in-depth guide.
The key here is to understand the search intent and create quality blog posts that meet the needs of your readers.
Therefore, it’s critical to know your audience’s search intent and develop an exhaustive blog piece rather than aiming for the same content length, advises Bruce.
Ekta Swarnkar from Tia Says doesn’t buy the idea that only longer blog pieces are great for search results. However, she does agree that longer articles are more informative than short posts.
According to her, a blog post needs to have enough information so that your readers won’t have to search elsewhere for similar information. That’s why most of their blog articles are about 2000 words long.
She also believes that longer blogs (3000-4000 words) are boring for readers. Therefore, an ideal post length is typically between 1500 to 2000 words, suggests Ekta.
As you can see, there isn’t an official word count for how long a blog post should be. That’s because the answer will vary depending on a number of factors, as mentioned above.
Sure, studies have shown that longer blog pieces often win in terms of SEO performance. But that isn’t to say that short, snappy articles won’t get any social shares.
So, here’s the deal: Rather than focusing on the perfect length for your article, try to ensure that the piece actually offers value.
If you think you can cover the content topic well and thoroughly in 600, 1500, 2000, or 3000 words, go for it. As long as you provide the answers your readers want, you’re good.
Got any other questions regarding blogging or content length? Feel free to drop us a comment below.