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Does Article Length Matter to Your Content Strategy?

  • August 18 2014
  • Comments Off on Does Article Length Matter to Your Content Strategy?

Content strategy is essentially the culture, approach and mindset that you use in order to deliver information to the places that people look for it the most. It is a strategy in which you approach content as a type of asset. The most important thing when it comes to a website’s content strategy is the quality of the content, as good content is the key to a website’s success. However, many ask: Does article length matter? The answer to this is yes, the size of the content also matters. How long you make your articles can have a huge effect on your reader. Keep in mind that the length of your articles must meet the expectations of two different aspects: the search engines and your audience.


Audience Worthy Article

Your audience will find the value of your article the most important aspect. This means that they get something useful out of your article such as that it helps them solve a problem or teaches something they didn’t know before. Your article could also inform them on the latest news or even make them laugh. Any of these things will make your content not just a useless attempt to grab search engines’ attention.


Search Engines

Search engines can’t read your content; this means that the value of your content is not essential to them. Instead, they deem an article worthy from other types of factors. This includes a lack of duplicate material, keywords located in the article, SEO format and the length of an article. This is one reason why article length is very important.


What Works For One Doesn’t For Others

Because of the huge difference in what makes an article worthy from one person to another as well as one platform to another, what works for one doesn’t necessarily mean it will work for the other. Although you may be able to write all the information you need to in a few sentences, and it might make you quite popular with your audience, it won’t do the same for search engines such as Google, who will expect more content.


Holding The Attention Span

Another very important aspect that affects the length that your content should be is the attention span of those who read it. It has been noted in the press in recent months that the attention span of general readers has dropped to an all time low due to the immediate gratification of social networks such as Facebook and Twitter (who only allows 240 characters or less), where you can only find content that is quite short and gets to the point right away. However, this doesn’t mean that an article can’t be lengthy, as there will always be readers who are willing to read a long article if it has value.


What is the Magic Number?

Studies have actually been performed on what makes the ideal length of an article to keep search engines and readers alike interested. The study was done in order to get an accurate measure of whether or not the article length had an affect on the readers’ attention span by comparing the length of the content with how long readers spent reading the content. The findings were quite interesting, as the study found that articles that took the average reader seven minutes long to read found the most success in keeping the attention span of the reader, while also meeting the standards of search engines. This is about 1000 to 1600 words depending on how many images that are in your article. That being said, articles can be much shorter as many content writers find success in short but sweet articles with a length of between 400 and 600 words.

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Cameron Mackey

Cameron is the Content Manager for the Vorongo Blog. He has spent three years in various content marketing roles. When he is not working with Vorongo he enjoys photography and hiking.

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