If you’ve been following us for a while, you know we love a blog. Not only because you can have a good chat; but you can also do wonders for website SEO. I wrote about this here on LinkedIn. But many people are confused about how long or short blogs should be. Hopefully, with this blog, we can help.
The bad news…
Now I am not going to pretend that I have done lots of detailed research on this, I haven’t I’ve just read a lot of the research that is out there. The general consensus of opinion is that long-form content is better. By that, we mean blogs that are around 2000 words long (or more). Before you get hysterical hear me out…
First things first, there is no one single ‘one size fits all’ answer to this, sorry. As with most things related to content, there are a lot of factors which can come into play here. The first being your industry. There are some sectors which may well get away with shorter lengths of posts. Such as fashion for example. Their blogs are more likely to be driven by imagery than words.
Neil Patel did a cracking post on how long blogs should be per sector based on a load of research; and whilst I agree with this, I also think you need to be looking at your audience too. For example, our best blog ever is the one on WooCommerce Shipping. It’s something which ranks highly time and time again. It gets us website visitors and business too. Why is this?
WooCommerce shipping can be an absolute nightmare, and there are not so many easy to understand articles out there. So people who are searching for help on this hit our blog. It was basically something our clients needed. However, if you look at the word count it’s not that massive. I can see why everyone is confused, can you?
Why are you writing a blog anyway?
If we’re honest, a lot of people write blogs because they have too. Some may never really pay attention to what they are offering the reader, or in some cases, how they are performing. Please do not be that person! As we mention a lot, a blog is a great driver of traffic to your site. You want people to come and take a look, you also want them to come back.
You need to pay attention to not just what you are doing, but what others are doing in your sector. So for example, search for some of the keywords you’re putting in your blog. What to the top results like? How long are the blogs which come up? Are they massive, or are they short? What about your blogs? How long are the top 10 performing ones – is there some correlation in post length?
The good news…
Honestly, there is good news. Blogging is like anything, it takes time. If you’re new to it, it can seem like a thankless and long drawn out task. It doesn’t have to be. I promise.
The first thing to do is to get some ideas down of what you can write about.
Think about how you can bring value into your site with your blog. I always encourage my clients to have a notebook and scribble down ideas. It doesn’t matter if they’re not fully formed yet. That will come. We have a running list of about 30 things we want to talk about. That is just for the website side of things!
Remember, you can categorise them out, so you can literally write about anything related to your sector.
Are you able to write case studies?
These can be great. Do you have a product or service which has really helped someone? We all love a happy ending, so if you’ve helped someone, ask them if they’d be happy to be featured. It’s kudos for both of you. Both Suzi and I have been featured on other blogs. This is great for us, our website and social links were posted on these sites. This means we get a backlink, which is all good! If you’ve helped out a business, then link out to them. Links all help with SEO.
What about something like our WooCommerce blog?
Is there something that you can write about which can solve a problem? Woo shipping is known to make me stressed, so I refer back to our blog a lot. If it’s useful, people will look. Is there something that your clients always ask about? Blog about that. There is always something that people will need to know about, I guarantee it!
In some industries, it can be really useful to have an opinion on something. Now, of course, this needs to be done with great care. Remember no ‘isms’ especially if you’re in business. You want people to want to work with you, not troll you!
Did you write something before, and now you’ve changed your mind? Personally, I don’t see this as a bad thing. For example, we wrote about the Gutenberg editor when it was first released. If we’d changed our mind, there is no harm in writing another blog explaining why that is the case. People want to come to you for an expert opinion. There is no reason why that opinion cannot evolve over time. (Just for the record, we’re still not massive fans!)
What about getting people to write an article for you? Are there people who you admire, or someone you collaborate or would love to collaborate with? What about asking them to write for you? Guest bloggers will bring a different perspective to your blog, and also can bring their followers too!
But I hate writing!
Writing is not something all of us can do effectively. It’s only been in recent months that I’ve taken to this writing malarky. I always thought I wasn’t that good at it. The thing is, it’s like a muscle. The more you do it, the easier it is. If you’re positive you cannot write a word, then hold that thought, we’ve got another blog coming soon which may just help you out!
You may write something that no one reads but remember the magic of SEO. The more keywords you can get into your blog, the more likely your site is going to rank for them.
This can mean business for you!
If you’re really not happy with the writing process, then what about getting some help? There are people out there who can write blogs for you, or even just polish up what you’ve written. It doesn’t need to be expensive.
If this article was useful or you need some help, then we’d love to hear from you.
If you’re interested in what we’re doing in terms of training, then take a look here