Thursday , 27 April 2017

Is Longer Content Really Better For Your Website?

Google’s algorithms don’t always make it easy for a website to create content that will rank high on the search engines, but what most of us bloggers and SEO specialists would have noticed that the regular updates to its algorithms are constantly inclined towards better user experience. Whether it is long form blog posts or short ones, Google is constantly looking for rich content which has the right use of keywords. Many of our readers have questioned the right length of content for ideal rankings, better conversions, higher visibility and improved user experience. We have evaluated different lengths of posts on various blogs and we have checked the kind of posts that rank higher in the search engines. We’ve noticed that longer content is definitely more impactful than shorter ones.

Why? You May Ask

SEO

Google’s Panda update made it clear that thin content wasn’t going to get us anywhere. A good way of ensuring that you have good quality content for your website or blog. Long content gives you the chance to be more informative, to cover a certain topic with more depth and to educate people regarding something more clearly.

It also helps you add backlinks and keywords in a more appropriate way rather than stuffing them into a small blog post. These make a difference when it comes to SERPs. It is most likely that you will gain better rankings when you write good quality content in the form of long blog posts for better user experience.

Higher Conversion Rates

When you have some good quality posts that can keep your users interested right till the end, then chances are that they will have spent enough time on your website and may even consider buying your product or making a donation or becoming a member. When your users find your posts informative, they are more likely to convert.

The key is not just to write long content but to make sure that it is informative and interesting enough for your readers to read it right till the end. If you are able to do this, then you will automatically begin to notice better conversions. Blogs like Crazy Egg and Buffer have been able to increase their rates of conversion using long form blog posts.

Better User Experience

If you thought that we are creating content for a generation that has a very short attention span then you are probably right. But give your users good quality, informational content and they will automatically read it right till the very dramatic conclusion you wrote. The experience of your users depends on the quality of your content and not just on its length.

And how quickly can the attention drop from an article? An average 1000 to 1500 word article takes about 5 to 7 minutes to read. The average attention span will usually allow you to read up to a 2000 word article without losing interest. This means that long content doesn’t only give you the chance to write informative articles, it also means that your readers will be reading it without losing interest.

Higher Social Engagement

What kind of articles do you see being shared most on social media? Those that are highly opinionated and ones that are likely to be debated by others. In addition to these there are those articles which make regular look more exciting. Like instead of a recipe for plain brownies, add a recipe for brownies with special frosting and you can have people sharing it with their friends.

Long form blog posts give you the chance to voice your opinion regarding a topic clearly. It allows usual topics to gain an interesting edge. You can include more examples and add personal experiences adding a certain level of personalization to the posts which will be enjoyed by your readers.

Most readers know that long posts that are informative have a lot of research involved in them. And that is what makes the difference. Shorter posts can be crisp but they cannot pack as much information as a long post.

Then Why Don’t We See More Of Long Form Blog Posts?

It is not surprising at all that even though long content is effective in increasing rankings and conversions, not many bloggers use them. This is because readers like interesting content and it is not always easy to keep long blog posts interesting enough till the end. Many bloggers may end up stretching their content which can make it boring.

Remember that users will not go on reading anything that sounds too stretched. They will like to read on if you continue to provide them new and interesting information throughout the post. Redundancy and a loss of flair in the middle of the post will lead to abandonment of your article before your readers reach the conclusion.

So what is good for your blog or website?

Long content is definitely a winner any day when it comes to improving your website rankings and providing your readers with quality content that they will be interested in. Long posts are ideally 1500 to 2500 words long. These posts require a lot of research and they must be rich in content so that they can keep the readers interested.

Bland content will never do well with your readers. No matter what the topic is, make your content emotive and if you can, add a personal touch to it. Your readers will always like to read something that includes your own experience. Neil Patel talks about his experiences in most of his blog posts and he even conducted an experiment to check if lengthy articles will get a positive reaction from his readers or not. He wrote 327 blog posts on QuickSprout out of which the ones that were shared the most were over 1,500 words long.

Use long content to ensure that you rank high on SERPs. Organic SEO attempts will do well when it comes to long form blog posts. On the other hand, shorter posts can be used every now and then to gain the attention of readers who cannot spend time on long posts.

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