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5 Things to Consider for Your Blog’s Post Length

April 25th, 2007

One of the key issues that many of us struggle with as newbie bloggers is the topic of post length. Is it better to write longer, more detailed posts or to keep them short? Like a lot of things in life, the answer seems to be a resounding “it depends”. After scouring the Internet for clues and doing some thinking on this topic, I have discovered five important considerations that should be taken into account when deciding how long your posts should be.

1. Attention span of the readers

Most Internet readers do not seem to have much of an attention span when it comes to reading blog content. In fact, Darren Rowse even performed his own investigation into how long readers actually stay on blogs and determined that the average visit length was approximately 96 seconds. This is certainly a much shorter period of time than most of my own blog visits, and I have had to seriously think about adjusting my post length accordingly.

2. SEO (Search Engine Optimization) factors

Most SEO experts, gurus, or whatever we are supposed to call them advise against both very short and very long posts. If posts are too short, then there will not be enough content for the search engines to index properly. If the posts are too long, then we may be “wasting” words- or maybe we should just break up that really long post into two or more “quick hitters” for more listings in the search results. Overall, a length of about 200-1000 words seems to be the target to shoot for in terms of SEO considerations.

3. There may be strength in numbers

Some people have noticed that by writing shorter posts, it is possible to write more of them in the same amount of time. By generating a greater quantity of posts, you may be able to attract more readers because you will have more listings in the search results and more new posts will show up in people’s RSS feeds. While not everyone believes in this strategy, if you happen to be a blogger or essayist that normally writes long posts, you might be able to make your posts more concise without sacrificing quality.

4. The topic of your blog

Some types of posts lend themselves to greater length than others. For example, most news-oriented blogs will quickly summarize a story and then link out to another article, making most of their posts shorter. On the other hand, bloggers who write in-depth reviews of products or deep philosophical essays will tend to run much longer.

5. Overall coverage of the topic

Perhaps the best strategy is to simply make your post however long it needs to be to adequately cover the topic, then wrap it up and move on to the next post. Most of the time, this will result in medium length posts. You need enough words to cover your topic well and look like you know what you’re talking about, but you shouldn’t ramble on for too long either. Otherwise, you may run the risk of losing some of your readers’ interest before you can persuade them to become regular subscribers to your blog.


One Response to “5 Things to Consider for Your Blog’s Post Length”

  1. comment number 1 by: amfufu

    Thanks for the tip dude. I will keep all these in mind. Most of the posts I have were indeed very lengthy. I haven’t figured out why the “Read more” portion of the theme is not working. Instead of summarizing my posts to a shorter version, it keeps displaying all the contents of my article.

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