When we suggest to clients that they improve their potential ranking and website engagement with the blog, one of the first questions we usually get asked is, “how long should it be?“
The simple answer is however long you need it to be!
Google just give some guidelines starting from 300 words, but it likes you to have more if possible and some blogs you read are quite lengthy. This is because Google believes that the longer the article, the more chance it has of having real substance; be an article to inform and educate and answer the need of the reader. Of course, this can’t be the case, or the article may just waffle – you will have to make that call!
Equally important is the Readability Index Score for the page, and I have to say, this is one of the hardest things to score highly on. Blogs are often conversational. They’re not complicated white papers or literary masterpieces; they should engage and entertain. So, why does this make it hard to meet a high Readability Score? This is simple, Google doesn’t like sentences of more than 20 words, and that is not very many when you’re trying to explain the complicated subject. In fact my last sentence was 29 words just to demonstrate! Whilst we use punctuation to allow the reader to breathe, Google like a full stop.
Readability forms part of your SEO ranking so it is important to finding that happy medium. The flesch-kincaid index gives you an approximate age equivalent and Google is not pitching high – although they don’t come down and say it out loud that we can see, they seem to be aiming for an average reader age of 12-13 year olds.
Users of chrome as a browser can download an addon to check readability from https://chrome.google.com/webstore/detail/readability-score/ and if your site is built in WordPress the readability score can be checked using a plugin called Yoast – ask your web developer to install it for you.
The most important thing with the blog is to make it interesting. The more interesting your blog is the more engaging you are, the more engaged people are with your website, the more they are likely to trust you, the more they trust you, the more you are likely to get business. It’s a simple equation!
Happy blogging! And, if you are wondering how long this blog is – it’s 409 words!