January 29, 2013 by Brian Rock
Here’s a question: how long should your content be to ensure the best search engine visiblity?
A lot of SEO advice suggests minimums. Anything less than 300 words or so is considered low quality, and so you should be writing 300 to 400 words or more so that you don’t run afoul of Google’s quality control algorithms.
Are Longer Posts Better?
But what about the top end? Is there such a thing as too long? On the one hand, there’s an argument to be made for conciseness. You want to focus on a specific topic or keyword, and shorter posts are more laser focused than longer ones. If you have a 1,500 word post that answers three questions you could easily turn that into 500 tightly focused posts about each question.
But, each of those posts would have less keyword diversity in them. Assuming the three mini-topics were all related to a larger topic, the longer post might help you catch more long tail keywords and thus get more low competition search engine traffic.
The reason I thought about this today is that I just went to write a new article on HubPages, and they’ve added a new feature to their content authoring page. They suggest that hubs with certain characteristics (700 or more words, multiple images, and embedded content) attract more search traffic than other hubs.
It turns out to be timely advice, as the hub I had planned was rather lengthy. I just published History of the Canon EOS Rebel Series, and it ended up being a whopping 1,100+ words. Phew, that was a mouthful! I also included two images, a video, and a poll.
One reason it’s long is that I talk about four different cameras – the Canon t1i, Canon t2i, Canon t3i, and Canon t4i. So I wonder if this will help me hit more long tail keywords where people are trying to compare multiple cameras and typing in a bunch of names. An article that only focused on one or two cameras would be less likely to get those visits.
We’ll see. I’m not sure if this hub will get much search traffic anyway; my goal was to promote my new digital photo blog, Rockin’ Photogs. So whether the length helps or not, we can check that off the list. Links, done!