Blog Anatomy IV: What is the Best Length for a Blog Post?
In this post we’ll be discussing blog post length. How do you know how long your blog posts should be? How do you know what is too long, what is too short, and what is just right? I’ve asked myself this question many times: How long should my blog posts be?
The Inspiration for this Post
This post was inspired by Blogging University’s Blogging 101 Day 9 assignment, Get Inspired By the Neighbors. The directive is to write a post that builds on a comment I left on one of my fellow bloggers’ posts. I found an awesome short and sweet About page on a blog called Thoughts and Photos from Angi. Even though that About Page was so short and sweet, it still managed to get a lot across about the author, and I left a comment declaring I had “brevity envy.”
That Got Me Thinking About Blog Post Length
I asked myself some questions:
Why do I think shorter posts are better? Are they actually better? Better for what?
Why do my posts always end up being long?
Is there, in fact, a “best” length for a blog post?
Naturally, I did what any person who has an internet connection and device would do…I Googled “What is the best length for a blog post?” There were lots of results, and many said pretty much the same thing, so I’m tending to take them as more or less legit. Here are two results I thought were pretty good, since the first one answered the question based on research, and the second one answered based on personal experience.
This Digital Marketer post has some nifty infographics generated by a Buffer survey. Additionally, the author sought opinions on those survey results from some well known folks in fields like social media marketing and email marketing. According to the infographic and study on blog post length, the ideal length is 1,600 words. The most read posts will take readers 6 minutes or less to read.
This TheWritePractice.com post cites author Joe Bunting’s personal experiences as a blogger. According to Joe, the answer to “what is the right length for your blog post” lies in what you want to achieve with that post. His post maintains that short posts (less than 600 words) generate more comments, but garner fewer shares, don’t establish authority and aren’t great for search engine optimization. Meanwhile, long posts are better for getting shares on social sites and building reputation as you help solve your readers’ problems.
Reading that summary made me feel better, because my posts do tend to be longer, but they also educate, provide solutions, and share how-to tips, and they have cultivated a pretty good reputation for me as a result.
In the end, Joe says write the length you want, and I for one will happily take that advice. This post, up to the end of this paragraph, has less than 600 words. For me, that is a short post and I’m happy with that, as one of my goals is to write shorter posts and, hopefully, get more comments.
What do you think?
Did you like the length of this post? Was it easy to get through?
Do you generally write short posts or long ones, or a mix? Do your short posts get more comments than your long ones?
I’d love to hear your post length feedback and findings!
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This post was written in answer to the awesome Blogging University‘s online course and assignment, Blogging 101 Day 9: Get Inspired By The Neighbors. My audience is primarily small business owners, non-profit staff, and especially solopreneurs who want to learn to use social media (including their blogs!) effectively to promote their businesses and services, and to attract and build their target audiences.
Meilani MacDonald is a brand identity and outreach strategy consultant who runs Meilani's Blooming Business Club. Club members enjoy affordable monthly workshops and "Consultant is IN" Hangout sessions focusing on marketing, social media, task and time management, and business coaching and brainstorming.
Meilani also offers editing, proofing, copywriting, book doctoring and graphic design services.