Why Long vs. Short Content Length to Improve SEO?

Short content sucks!

The simple view many have in digital marketing is that few people today will read due to busy lifestyles and more distraction. This is just an opinion though, drawing from nothing objective. Expert perspectives and case studies prove otherwise.

This is an age-old debate. Classic advertisers like David Ogilvy encountered similar resistance yet promoted longform copy. Famed copywriter Claude Hopkins states, “The most common expression you hear about advertising is that people will not read much. Yet a vast amount of the best-paying advertising shows that people do read much.”

Modern case studies support them. SEMrush’s Ranking Factors 2.0 has content length in their top 10 ranking factors. Almost a decade ago, a now-defunct platform called serpIQ published a study further defending this notion.

Finally, top SEO professionals list content length among their top 20 ranking factors, though it clearly has indirect influence on higher-ranking items.

So is content length a true ranking factor? Probably not, but without enough words, you can’t handle a subject comprehensively. Search engines like Google try to understand your page’s relevancy by associating entities, so including related topics not only boosts head keyword rankings but addresses long-tailed phrases too.

Backing off further, there’s some truth behind users skimming content. The real issue though is not content length but digestibility. The solution is to use headers, hyperlinks, images, bulleted lists, CTAs, and UX/UI best practices to segment content alongside shorter paragraphs, sentences, & words.

Regardless of topic, 300 words is often the bare minimum to beat out competitors. 1000+ words is better, though real hub pages can exceed 3000. Nonetheless, you can reconcile reality with common sense by segmenting your long content to benefit your users and SEO as well.

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