Can my copy be too long or too short?
Is my content length helping or hurting my SEO efforts?
At Bayshore Solutions, we get these type of questions all the time. As someone who writes online content on a daily basis, and who tends to be wordy both in life and on paper, I often have to re-evaluate whether my copy is helping or hurting my efforts. Just where exactly is the sweet spot when it comes to copy length?
The honest answer, “it depends.” As frustrating as that explanation may be, it’s the hard truth. The reality is, there isn’t a “One size fits all” answer for copy length.
Every website, business and industry is unique. If someone tells you otherwise, your website may come short of its purpose, getting your users the messaging they need, to convert.
With that said, here are a few guidelines and tips, to help you fine-tune your messaging to ensure both your website users and search engines find what they are looking for.
QUALITY VS. QUANTITY
We know the search engines algorithms focus on content quality, not quantity. In other words, focusing on meaningful content should be the basis of our content strategy. Whether its website copy, a blog, a press release, whitepapers or even social media posts, substance should always be your primary concern.
By providing rich information that includes relevant keywords in your copy, you showcase that you are a subject matter expert, on the topic of discussion. That’s exactly what your users and the search engines are looking for.
STRUCTURE FOR ENGAGEMENT
As a supplement to substance, as you layout your page or copy, think about why your online visitors are there. Write for people, not the search engines.
Think about your own user habits. As you read this blog, what are you looking for? An answer. So give it to them. Be helpful and relevant. Solve a problem or help them find what they came for.
If a user spends too much time on your website, landing page or blog, searching for something specific without finding it, eventually they’ll give up and go elsewhere. Don’t lose them in a bunch of words.
- Break up your paragraphs,
- Use headlines,
- Bullet points, or
- Calls to action that define your messaging.
Readers scan websites for information. Structure your page to make sure your users can easily find relevant copy, or can see they are just a click away from what they are looking for. Everything on your page should be there for a reason.
KEEP IT SIMPLE AND CONCISE
This is often the hardest part for most writers. If you are close to a project or business you’re trying to create content for, it can be tough to narrow down your thoughts to a few key points.
We have found that the more complicated you make your content, the lower your conversion rate will be. Try to keep it to two to three primary thoughts per page.
If the subject requires additional explanation, it may be worth creating a new page or landing page to compliment the first. Again, you don’t want to lose your readers in a bunch of words, so keep it simple.
There is no magical length for any piece of content, but if you follow these guidelines, you’ll be surprised how much easier it is to get your thoughts on a page.
Bottom line: there’s only one hard fast rule when it comes to content length, write for people, not for word count.
Interested in learning more about how our digital marketing team can help you create a successful content strategy to grow your business? Contact us today.