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When it comes to building great content and getting ranked in search engine results, quality is key, along with the quantity of your posts. The length of your blog post will depend on a number of factors.

Technically, a post needs to have a minimum of 250 words to have a chance of breaking into the top search results. However, more and more studies are showing that long-form blog contents generally rank higher compared to their shorter counterparts.

It’s widely accepted that Google prefers longer blog posts.

Why do long posts rank higher in search results?

It’s crucial for SEO

Google has explicitly stated on its blog that it prefers in-depth articles. With keyword-rich, in-depth content, search engines can more easily index your page and better understand the topic of the blog post.

You get more opportunities to use keyword variations, making your content in a more likely to show up in more searches. With a lengthy post, you get a larger surface to insert all your desired keywords, consequently helping with strong optimization of the blog post. Of course, you’ll want to avoid keyword stuffing, and focus on providing your professional insight.

A well-researched article that provides unique information is what will lead to an exceptional ranking for your post on search engines.

Long-tail keyword variants will boost ranking

Long-tail keywords are those queries that are three or more words long, which return very specific search results. When customers use a highly specific keyword, they tend to be looking for exactly the thing that want to buy. This gives you an opportunity with your blogging efforts.

Google loves long-tail keywords as they offer insight on user intent. Shorter posts don’t offer much space to use long-tail keyword variants. But longer posts allow you to use long-tail keywords in larger numbers. When your post follows what Google loves, the route to higher rankings gets a lot easier.

Longer posts keep the readers hooked

The Internet is a great tool for gathering information. It’s natural that people are drawn to the type of content that offers rich insight into the things they’re interested in. Longer blog posts can provide users with the in-depth information that they crave.

According to this article by QuickSprout, longer posts are shared much more on social media. Posts that are 1500+ long have received 22 percent more Facebook Likes and 68 percent more Tweets. It’s a fact that well-written longer blog posts are better equipped to keep the readers engaged compared to shorter posts.

Helps to earn backlinks naturally

If your blog post can impress the readers – more precisely, if your readers deem your post to be actually insightful – they’re much more likely to link to it in their own content. When you can get natural backlinks to your post, Google will assign more value to your page and mark your site with higher priority.

Here are some quick stats on optimal length of a blog post

According to recent stats on blogging & content marketing:

  • The average word count for top-10 ranked posts for Google is between 1,140 to 1285 words.
  • Longer blog posts generate a whopping nine times more leads compared to shorter ones.

What is the best length for a blog post in 2018?

So, how long should a blog post be in 2018? According to Medium, the perfect length for a blog post should be seven minutes, or 1,600 words. Everyone may have a different answer when it comes to the best length, so it’s important not to focus on word count alone. Certain other factors come to play that will truly make your content valuable.

Factors that play a decisive role in length of a post

  • Topic or substance

What do you wish to convey in the post? Is it a small stuff that can be wrapped up in 350-400 words? If so, you should ideally stick to a brief length. A longer length cannot be the universal norm for every blog post. If a certain topic has nothing much to share, there is no point in exaggerating it to 1200 words. Bloated posts lack readability and provide nothing of value. The bottom line is – if your topic allows you to write more, you have the liberty to increase the word count. But if a shorter post is the best fitted for your particular topic, keep it that way.

  • Purpose of the post

The length of a blog post can also be determined by the end goal of your content. Do you want to increase the people on your email list? Are you aiming to drive social engagement through a call to action? Do you wish to extend brand awareness? It’s normally better to go for more words if you are looking to push social engagement with blog post. On the other hand, if you’re trying to sell a product or capture emails, you can keep your post shorter.

  • Your audience niche

Do you think your specific audience has the tenacity to go through longer posts? For example, posts targeted to teens, kids and young adults may perform better with a lower word count. Younger generations are always busy doing something or the other. A brief, concise article with catchy headline would be better able to keep them hooked than a large swath of lengthy text. On the other hand, if your post targets professionals, students, scholars, and trainees – build detailed, in-depth content that they will derive a lot of value from.

You have to take into account the lifestyle, needs, age, and expectation of your audience when deciding on a number of words to use. Your main focus should be to ensure excellent readability for your post in respect to your particular audience and industry. Google does prefer longer articles, but before that demands quality posts with high readability.

  • Frequency of the post

How much time do you have to post? If it’s not a lot, you may want to consider creating a few high-quality, lengthy blog posts a month, rather than many shorter ones. You should put an extensive amount of research and effort into your posts – anything that’s rushed might dampen the overall quality of the article.

Final words

Longer posts have been seen as the most powerful in 2018, as they allow useful information that Google rewards. The best tips for winning blog posts are concise paragraphs with proper subheads, easy language, valid facts and a robust structure. Proper distribution of relevant, high-scoring keywords is also important. Keywords should be placed in meta tags, alt tags, title, first paragraph and last paragraph. Make sure to add visual appeal like images, infographics, charts or videos, if applicable. Finally, always wrap up your post with a structured conclusion and call to action to give the user a clear next step.