Have you ever sat down to read a blog post and only one fourth of the way through start to wonder how long it’s actually going to be? The last thing you’ll want your readers to do is feel like your blog posts are too long (or too short!) and not have any interest in reading. You want to spark a desire in them to read it right then, right there, and not close the tab or save it for later.
It can be difficult to find the sweet spot, but it’s certainly important to write posts that give your audience enough information without boring them. Find the balance for the blog posts on your affiliate marketing site with these tips that can help you figure out how many words to write.
Think About Your Audience
Busy parents will likely struggle to sit down and read a 3,000 word blog post, whereas they’ll also hesitate to buy a product you’ve promoted in a blog post of approximately 150 words. Consider the lifestyle of your audience to determine how much time they dedicate to reading blogs per day or per week, as well as the shopping habits of ideal clients who might stumble upon your site from search engines.
The average adult reads about 300 words per minute. So if your ideal client spends about 15 minutes a day reading blogs, the maximum you could write would be 4,500. Of course, that’s considering that they read your blog and your blog only—you’ll most certainly want to write less. Generally, the shortest blog post you’d want to write is 200 words, bare minimum, and a longer post is 1,000 or more. Decide where your readers fall into that spectrum by thinking about their education levels, free time, and level of interest and knowledge in your niche.
The truth is, finding the right amount of words per blog post is a trial and error affair. There’s no magic number, and the only way you’re going to get close to finding a halfway decent number is by publishing blog posts and seeing how they perform.
Try out a few different posts that go into more detail or include personal anecdotes. Experiment with blog posts that are concise and include a lot of links to more extensive information. Try a mix of something in between. Also remember to see how different styles of posts are received. For example, does your audience like lists that have information broken up easily for them or do they enjoy longer-form articles?
Aside from looking at your stats to see how they perform compared to each other, also take note of what you enjoy the most. The best blog posts come from happy bloggers who enjoy what they’re doing, so if you really, truly hate the idea of writing an in-depth expose on something, then don’t do it! Stick with something shorter-form that you actually like writing.
Take A Look At Your Most Popular Posts
In the same vein, take a look at your history and see if any posts are standouts. Anything that has performed exceptionally could point you in the direction of the type of posts you should be writing in the future. There are many reasons that a post becomes popular, and the number of words is not usually the main one. It can act as an indicator, though, and give you a good starting point. If your top three posts are all around 500 words, then that may very well be your magic number. If, however, the numbers are all over the place, then it’s time for you to determine which one resonates with you the most and to stick with it for a bit.
One of the best ways to make a longer blog post seem shorter and more manageable is by including media like images or video.
Photographs and illustrations will immediately catch your reader’s attention, enticing them to read the post. More importantly, though, images help to break up large chunks of text to make them easier for readers to digest. For example, if you’ve got a 1,500 word post that you know your readers will love but it looks rather intimidating on the page, insert photos. Generally, no matter how far the readers scroll, you want them to be able to see either the top or bottom of an image. Avoid endless scrolling of text, especially if you think that’s not something your ideal client would like. But even if you decide to only insert one or two, it can still make a larger piece of text seem much smaller and easier to get through.
Additionally, to really up your affiliate marketing site, consider including video. Not only is this a valuable way to include information that could take hundreds of words to communicate, but it can help to build more trust in your audience because they can see your face. More trust leads to them feeling comfortable accepting your product and services recommendations. Video is an insanely popular medium that many affiliate marketers use, and you can incorporate it into your blog to make posts shorter without sacrificing pertinent information.
Remember: The Content Itself Really Matters, Not The Length
What really matters at the end of the day is that the content you’re providing is helpful. It truly doesn’t mean anything if the post is 80 words or 8,000, so long as your audience feels connected to it. A good blog post will leave the reader feeling satisfied, entertained, or like they learned something, and if it achieves that then the word count is completely moot. Certainly aim to hit a certain amount that you think suits your readers, but focus on how to get the message across in a way that will interest them.