500 word article or 1500 words?

AnthonyCapetola

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Do you know which is better between 500 word article and 1500 words? I have to ask this question because I'm going to hire a writer on odesk or freelancer to write some articles for my blog and I don't know I should choose 500 words or 1500 word article.
Does Google like long articles (more words) and give them opportunities to have higher positions on search engines results?

Ideas anyone?
 

Nytshade

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It only depends on your competition. How many words does your competition use? That's the question you should be asking yourself. If you competitors are using 200 words then you can use 1500 but it's really not necessary because 500 words will be fine.

Simply check your competition.
 

SEOPub

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It really has nothing to do with competition. You won't rank better because you use more words than your competitors.

Here is what you should ask yourself. Whatever your post topic is, can you cover it completely in 500 words? Does it need 1000 words?

Actually, if you are focusing on word count at all, you are focusing on the wrong thing.

I've ranked pages at the top of SERPs with 250 words or less.

I understand you need a word count to give to the writer. Estimate what is needed to cover your topic and go with that. Google does not give a crap how many words you are using.
 

Nytshade

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Anthony my friend, take it from me, the more content you have the better. Yes you can rank with short content if you have strong backlinks. So if you have strong backlinks pointing to your website then don't worry but if not then use longer content.

The only disadvantage is that long content might take longer to load on a page especially if you have more visual stuff, which might affect user experience (in terms of loading). You can choose not to listen to me but here's a video that might help, but listen to how he refers to competition. Good luck :)

 

SEOPub

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Search engines do not care how long your content is. If they did, and you write 1,500 words, big freaking deal. The next guy is going to write 1,600 words. The guy after that will go for 1,800. Then 2,000. You get the idea?

If it was really a ranking factor, everyone would be writing a minimum of 10,000 words on every page. Fortunately, as can clearly be seen if you actually look through the SERPs and study pages that are ranking, content length does not play a role in ranking for a specific keyword.

Where it can be beneficial is with longer content you can hit on more related keywords and LSI terms helping the page to rank for a bunch of different, closely related keywords. But if you are just talking about 1 specific phrase that you are targeting, the length of your content does not matter.

I have never encountered one single professional SEO that paid attention to word counts.

The only people who tell you that word counts matter are people that do not know any better and are just rehashing garbage they heard from wannabe SEO gurus.

And that video from Matt Cutts does not prove otherwise. He is talking about doorway pages, shitty affiliate sites, and sites that are just syndicating content with no value. Nowhere in there does he say that the longer your content is, the better it is for rankings.
 

SEOPub

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That is one of the great things about SEO. For stuff like this, you do not even have to spend the time testing it. There is a giant laboratory out there already. It's called the SERPs. You can easily investigate the SERPs and see that there is zero truth to this silly myth about longer content being better.
 

Nytshade

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No one knows "exactly" how Google works, it's all assumptions and most of the stuff is based on results. So I've seen a lot of people in this forum saying they got better search engine results by writing longer posts. I've also got better search engine results by adding more content to my old blog posts that were short.

Call it a myth if you want, but I'm just sharing my results here. I believe it's better to test stuff yourself instead of going to the SERP and relying on what others are saying. In the words of Matt Cutts:

"Avoid Group Think... especially in discussion boards, blogs and forums. If a group of people say they rank high with private blog networks, it doesn't really mean they're ranking high. They might be trying to sell their service to you. If someone is getting high search engine rankings they'll keep doing that instead of telling everyone about it online. Just because a group of people say something is done in a certain way, that doesn't necessarily mean it's true".

Obviously these are not the exact words but the point is: "Try to avoid group think" so don't discourage people to do their own tests and rely on SERP.

My advise to anyone trying to do seo is: Simply give people a really great user experience and Google will reward you. That's what Matt recommends, I stick to that and it's working well for me. Without any link building and like I said, my competition has stronger links than me but I crash them (this statement also creates a lot of controversy).
 

SEOPub

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Like I said, content length is absolutely not a ranking factor. If it was, everyone would just keep writing longer and longer content. It's just a big myth that keeps getting circulated over and over again with ZERO proof of it ever posted by anyone. Anyone that has ever truly tested it, found content length to not be a factor.

Like most SEO myths, it just won't die.

In your particular case, the content might have just been better, it might have had a better social media push that brought in more views and links, or any other number of factors, but the word count has nothing to do with the success, or lack of success, of your website.
 

Adenan

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Google loves "high quality unique" article. It doesn't matter 500 words article or longer. As long as your article COMPELLING enough, it can help to reduce your bounce rate. The lower the bounce rate the better your blog to be for google results ranking purposes.

Here comes the advantage of longer articles. Because people will stay longer reading that article. But it depend on what i said, "compelling" factor. I often find long articles on the net that's doesn't compelling enough for me to read it till the last words. I just skip if the article "boring", unless it has "useful knowledge".

Another advantages of long article is it can "contain" MORE WORDS which can bring MORE KEYWORDS and can resulting in MORE TRAFFIC.
 

dandeedo

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I don't think it's matter as long as your article is readable and not boring! You can write 400 words article or less than 100 words article (Q&A type). On the other hand, you can write a journal that might take 4000 words to complete all segments.

As long as your article is unique, helpful to readers, have some back links from high quality sites - Google will give them value. Hope this helps.
 

kenmichaels

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As per my opininon it depends on your competitors. How many words does your competitor post on your site? But the main thing is post 1000-1500 words article which the users love to read and feel interesting.
 

kenmichaels

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1500 is enough long for a reader to read it and enough patient to read till the end of article. I think no one wants to read a long article like 15,000
Agree with you.

I've ranked pages at the top of SERPs with 250 words or less.
what made you succeed with 250 words on top search engine results?
keyword density in your article or they are low competitive keywords or long tail keyword or it has more quality backlinks pointing to it?
 

james01

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You write article 500 or 1500 words, it doesn't matter. The thing is how informative and interesting you write, so your audience does not go bore.
 

Norm

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Quality over quantity. Check out Seth Godin's blogs - short but he has a way of making you think and discuss his articles. Plus I like the short reads. I have seen Neil Patel discuss a stat that the average length of posts in the top 10 are over 2000 words. But again, I think it's better to focus on quality and whatever is required for your post. Can you give your writer a range like 500-1500 and pay accordingly?
 

drastic

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quality writing will beat lengthy garbage every time.
 

koolphoto

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I mix it up. I have short blog posts and long blog posts on my site. It depends about what I have to say. I write anywhere from 350 to 1,500 words per post. I don't think I ever went more then 1,500. I have a lot of posts on my site and I don't have trouble ranking.

It also depends on the keyword you are going for.

My experience is consistency and longevity is key. I find the longer your site is up and if you are consistent with your posting, you will have an easier chance to rank posts.

A suggestion if you are hiring a writer. You can have them write 1,500 word articles and then you can break them up yourself into smaller blog posts if you want.

These infographics might be of interest to you: http://www.digitalmarketer.com/ideal-length-of-blog-post-social/
 

Chelsea R. Minks

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Hiii Friends....
I think short articles must be better, because generally reader just wanted to get conclusion as soon as possible. And ranking of any article or site does not depends on number of words written but on the content it contains. So you can provide your users a good content in short discription also...
 
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