What is the best length for my website content?

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When it comes to the best length for website content, choosing your word count can feel like finding the answer to “How long is a piece of string?” and everyone has different ideas about what Google is looking for.

These change over time, too – so while a 2,000-word article might be best one month, the experts might be recommending 1,600 words within a matter of weeks.

So how can you future-proof the website content you produce? There are a few things you can do that will always help improve your search rankings, regardless of word count:

  • write good-quality, engaging content
  • write with a human audience in mind, not purely for SEO
  • write for a purpose and let this guide you on length

Generally speaking, this leaves you with a few options and the best word count for website content can depend on what you are trying to achieve.

Long form pages (1,500+ words)

A long form web page is typically anything over about 1,500 words. It’s enough to cover a single topic in depth, without going off on a tangent, repeating yourself or just padding the space with empty words.

You do get mammoth web pages several thousands of words long, and if these are well structured and well written, they can be effective too.

But in general, anything up towards 2,000 words stands a strong chance of being treated as in-depth content, and can propel you to a first-page ranking on your target SEO key terms unless they are already highly competitive.

Medium pages (500+ words)

A medium-length page (often called short form) can be a good way to cover a single subject from a specific angle, and you’ll find many blog posts are around this length, whether deliberately or just naturally.

There’s still plenty of opportunity to put your own voice on the page, incorporate factual information and include your SEO terms without them looking forced.

It can also be sensible to aim for around this length as part of long-term campaigns, where if a single post fails to get you into the top spots on Google, you can post a follow-up at a later date to reinforce the SEO benefits.

Short pages (100+ words)

Apparently, the average blog post published on WordPress is just 280 words long.

The shortest web pages naturally offer less chance for SEO keyword inclusion and rarely rank highly in search results – but they can still have value.

For example, an eCommerce site usually does not need product descriptions that are thousands of words long, especially if your words are supported by photos and other multimedia.

On shorter pages though, every word counts – so it’s as important as ever, if not even more so, to make sure that the content is written to a high standard.

How to choose the best web page length

Google continues to prioritise well-written content over all else, so it’s most important to choose an engaging topic and cover it in as much detail as your word count allows – and bring it to a natural conclusion rather than padding the excess space or cutting off the end. In short, long form wins every time.

Don’t forget: quality over quantity every time

Remember that you can get an extra boost using multimedia on the page, meta tags (which do still matter to an extent) and links to your page from other websites and social networks, among many other methods.

And structure your content well, as things like subheadings, bullet points and hyperlinks can all help your SEO keywords to be picked up and prioritised by Google.

Write for mobile users as well as desktop users

Finally, make sure you write for mobile users as well as desktop users. In recent years Google have put more emphasis on mobile search results, and in 2018 their move to Mobile First means you can no longer get away with showing shorter content to visitors from mobile devices.

Find out more about how The Content Marketing Team can help you improve engagement with your audience. Contact us on 0808 145 4416 or visit http://www.thecontentmarketingteam.co.uk

3 thoughts on “What is the best length for my website content?

  1. A good summary. Thanks. I worry that guidelines on word counts encourage people to write far more than they need to. No one should underestimate the time pressures on readers. A smaller piece looks far less intimidating; it’s much more likely to be read by someone with limited time to spare. Another option is to use the opening section as a summary. That gives busy readers enough information to know whether it’s worth reading on.

    1. You’re absolutely right to suggest including a summary in the opening section which can then encourage the reader to spend more time on the article if they so wish. Time pressures are a consideration but relevant and engaging content should mitigate this concern. The SEO benefits of long form content shouldn’t be overlooked.

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