The Long and the Short of it: Words that Count, or Counting Words?


When you work with us here at Content Equals Money, we ask a series of questions to help figure out how best to serve your content needs.  One of the first things that we’ll try to hammer out with you, when you make a request, is how many words you want your pieces to be.

To be honest, this can be a difficult question to answer, particularly if you don’t normally spend your day counting words like discs on an abacus.  However, if you’d like to maximize the value of your posts (both in terms of money and reader/Google impact) it’s an important question.  Fetch the abacus, have a seat, and read on.

Beginning with Blogs

Considering how big blogs are in the business world, this is the focus of today’s post.  If you don’t have a blog for your business, you should – according to a very clever infographic by Content Plus, a blog can make the following statistics a reality for your company:

·     Blogs on company sites result in 55% more visitors;

·     Blogs are a full 63% more likely to influence an individual’s purchasing decisions than print magazines;

·     60% of customers feel more positively about a company after reading custom content (like blogs) on a company’s website.

However, it’s likely that I’m just preaching to the choir, here – you are already probably aware that a blog is a good thing for a company to have.  You just want to know how many words should comprise that blog.

The reality of the situation is that there is no one, good answer to this question.  The frustrating answer is this: a blog needs to be long enough to encapsulate what needs to be said.  Period.  Done.

But if you’re working with a content writing service like us, you’ll need to give us some parameters as guides.  A good thing to consider when choosing a length for a blog post is to think about what you’re going to use your blog to do – do you want to post informative and innovative commentary day in and day out, or would you rather use your blog as a rotating news platform?

Obviously, informative and innovative commentary about topics that are relevant to your company is going to require more wordage than updates about what’s going on in the industry.  There is a delicate balance, however – you don’t want to go on forever and put your readers to sleep!

For clients who are just starting out with blogging, I generally recommend a length of 250-300 words and a frequency of three times per week.  This is definitely enough to get a bump in site traffic and allows the positive effects of a blog to be realized.

Of course, to really hit it off with blogs, the informative and innovative commentary needs to come into play.  These blogs are generally between 500-1000 words long – after all, if you’re trying to share insight, you’ll likely need more than a few paragraphs to get your point across.  Dean Ethridge has a great post about the utility of blog length here.

Another tidbit that I also like to drop into the ears of clients is to remember to take your mind off the numbers every so often.  Not all blogs are required to be the same length.  You could have a blog that’s 200 words on Tuesday and 2000 words on Wednesday and the world won’t end.  Having some variation in blog length also means that you can attract a wide range of attention spans – some people can’t sit still for longer than 100 words, while others might prefer to sink their teeth into a long read.

The long and the short of it is just that – blogs can be both long and short.  If you’re ready to make blogs of any length work for you, give us a call.  Together, we can count words and then make those words count for your business.

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Laura

Laura Hancock is a co-owner of ContentEqualsMoney.com. She has also been a long time writer for us. She writes with a passion for accuracy and flow. While her administrative duties have grown, she is a still a big piece of our content writing services team! Currently pursuing a certification in Technical Writing at the University of Washington. She lives in Seattle. +Laura Hancock

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