You’ve heard it all before: write short but frequent posts; write more often; write less often; don’t write a blog at all. With so much conflicting advice out there, what’s a business blogger to do?
Just write, baby.
In all seriousness, as long as your content is good, and appropriate for your readers, you’ll do well. If you’re looking to take things up a notch with your business blog, keep reading.
Why longer posts on your business blog just work
1. You’re seen as an authority more quickly
A longer post has more potential to be an immersive and thorough explanation or description of a topic, which immediately lends authority to it (and by extension, your business blog.) Which helps with your readers.
Readers appreciate the time investment you’ve made into your longer post and assume (rightly or wrongly) that you’ve got more weight and authority behind it. “Big content” takes longer to produce, therefore you “must” know what you’re talking about.
2. You’ll enjoy more organic SEO love
Google, in particular, likes it when content answers questions since it serves up results based on that. A longer post simply has a better chance of answering a question than a 500-word post. This was backed up by research done by SerpIQ. Content was ranked higher by searched engines if it was longer.
Google’s web crawler looks at everything on your site when it indexes it. Every single word, tag, image, heading, page title, headlines, metadata, alt tags on images and links, etc. The more you’ve got on the post, the more that gets indexed.
Readers love longer posts too
Another reason is that a longer post simply gives you more room to share examples and stories that readers like. You can use a lot more variety when you have a lot more content. The more variety you have, the better you’ll perform in search queries. Remember, Google isn’t just delivering results that have an exact match to the query. It delivers results that are semantically related to that content. What that means in English is that it delivers content that even slightly matches any search terms/questions. So having variations on your keywords and phrases in your longer post gives you more chances to match anything a user may type into a search box.
2a. Time spent on websites is another factor for search engines
Google also uses the time spent on a website in its search algorithm, so longer post = more time = more love from Google. Readers who spend a long time on a website have a higher chance at clicking on to other pages/content on your site, making it more likely they’ll turn into a lead, and eventually a customer.
Medium found that the ideal length of time is 7 minutes. However long your content is, you’re only going to keep their attention for, at best, 7 minutes. Any short or longer than that, and you run the risk of them navigating away to something else.
3. Backlinks are easier with longer posts
On a related note, backlinks are easier to create with longer posts. Just like you’ve got a better chance at matching a search term, you’ve got more words you can use for backlinks with longer posts. This includes outbound links to external sites as well as internal links to other pages on your own website.
3a. People will want to link to your longer posts
Going back to the authority idea mentioned in #1, people will naturally want to link to it because your long content is seen as authoritative. It has weight. Thus creating organic backlinks that get you even more SEO love from the search engines. And gives your domain authority as well, further increasing your page rank.
4. You’ll build your thought leadership
Some topics lend themselves to longer posts; others do not. If you understand when to use a longer post, your readers will appreciate it. It shows you understand your audience.
- You know what they like
- What they’re interested in
- What obstacles they face
- When they want advice
- When they want a short tweetable message
- That they like conversational blog posts they can share with others
Longer posts show confidence, which always breeds authority. Readers are more accepting of confidence and so will share your content more. Buffer did a blog content audit , and found that their sweet spot is in the 2,500-word range. They got more shares the longer their posts were. Medium found that posts in the 1,600-word range got the most attention on their site. Continue writing longer and longer posts until you find your sweet spot.
5. You’re creating more shareable moments (and content)
Turn your longer posts into downloadable products like a guide or ebook, and you’ll increase your sharable moments. Readers are already sharing your longer posts on social media. Give them another thing to share by offering it as a download. Add to your prospect list by offering it as a download.
Again, more social shares = higher search ranking position = more readers = more shares and so on
6. You’ll decrease your time to publication time
Because you can break out the longer blog post into smaller evergreen posts that you can then add backlinks to. Use the comments people make on the post to create new blog posts. Use the quotes they share on social media as ideas for new content.
6a. Do the opposite: Create longer posts from your short posts
George Costanza did it once on Seinfeld and got everything he ever wanted: a killer job with the New York Yankees, and an amazing new girlfriend. Why not do the opposite with your business blog and get everything you ever wanted too?
Okay, maybe not everything, but more of what you want: more readers, clicks, shares, downloads, etc. Take a series of your blog posts and create a longer-form blog post. Add backlinks to the longer post into each of the individual ones. Add backlinks to the individual posts in the longer post.
What say you? Are longer blog posts for you?
After taking more than 1,000 to talk about long content in this post (1,000+ if you include this conclusion), are you convinced that longer blog posts are for you? Is it worth the time and resource investment to create it on a regular basis? Let me know what you think in the comments. I’m curious to hear your thoughts.