Does Blog Post Word Count Really Matter?

wait so you're telling me you called this whole meeting to tell me that I'm at higher risk for shark attack because I eat ice cream exactly Ricky look at this graph you cannot tell me that this is just a coincidence Nathan we live in Idaho it's 500 mil to the nearest ocean you know not that worried eat your ice cream I don't care I [Music] will a few years ago Jim and I actually did a study where we looked at a whole bunch of blog content and the amount of traffic that it got and what we found was that our longer blog posts on average actually brought in more traffic and that seems to be corroborated by studies like this one here uh from semrush that the best blog post length was 1,500 to 2500 words Wix says here that long form content between a th000 and 2,000 words gets 77% more backlinks and 56% more social shares than content that's less than a thousand words interesting thing though is in the same case study it is a few years old we found though that when we took those blog posts and divided it by the amount of time it took to write them we actually got the most result for our time on our shorter blog posts now to be fair for us a short blog post is over a thousand words at the time it was 1,350 words so I I guess it kind of agrees with the studies but kind of doesn't so today we want to talk about does the length of your blog post actually matter when it comes to getting traffic on your website these studies would seem to suggest so and uh we decided that it was time to not do another study so why didn't we do another study I guess is the big question here as I dove in and did research on this video as we talked about this video we just realized that word count really just doesn't matter wait a minute doesn't the study say like everything says everybody is saying that it does but I think it's really word count can lead to the things in a blog post that do matter which bring the results that people are finding for these studies right I mean it's clear here like the longer content does better yeah but if we're going to try to assign like that this cause led to this effect we have to be able to tie the two together so if longer blog posts lead to more traffic just the length That's What mattered we could maybe make the argument that somewhere in Google's algorithm it's looking at the length of the post and saying longer is better that's an actual ranking factor it's not but but if it were then you could argue that okay longer is what led to more organic traffic but you can't draw the same parallel between longer blog posts and backlinks because backlinks aren't generated by some algorithm they're generated by people literally making a link to a piece of content on your website what about social shares do people share your content just because it's got more words in it obviously the answer is no so there's got to be something else that's correlating with the length of a blog post that's actually leading to the more social shares the more um backlinks and the better organic traffic so that's what we're going to talk about in the rest of this video and just like eating ice cream and sharks may have some connection uh things aren't always what they seem but let's dive in you know what I think it is like because we don't get shark attacks in Idaho it's probably because we have potatoes yeah I think sharks are scared of potatoes right they must be because otherwise we'd have shark attacks IEM of course the next part of this video is we just want to tell you okay well if work count doesn't actually matter well what do you do about that how do you know how much to write for a blog post because there are so many different topics in whatever your Niche might be and it's important that the amount you write matches the query so word count does matter but it should be different every time not yeah it doesn't matter the way you thought it mattered longer isn't always better the length should be the right length for the content that you're generating okay so when you're going to write a blog post how do you figure this out how do you figure out how much you need to write well first I would look at what have other people done uh there are so many elements that you could dig dig into we're just going to share a couple today but number one I'm going to look on the ser and I'm going to see what are other people writing what's the average or you know what's the kind of the length of the post that they're writing but not only that what themes are they including in their blog posts that are making their blog post successful that's probably the first thing the first place I would start whatever is being featured at the top of that search engine result page uh that is what Google has determined is the best at least based on what's available to Google and so that's a really good starting point uh obviously we're not fans of like taking what other people did and just copying it and in fact we're finding like that's really a bad move even from a ranking standpoint but seeing what Google thinks is the best and using that as a starting point I think is a great idea and you mentioned one other thing that you do when you are kind of working I don't know the the beginning stages of a blog post like how to determine the length maybe you could share that I thought that that was it was really helpful whenever I start off writing a blog post I mean this comes right out of a video we made like over three years ago where I you know was riding on dirt bike and stuff if you've seen that one if you kind iconic video on this this channel it's like one of the most recognizable videos in that video we showed this exact process and this is what I do you know I do like to find my kind of highle answer but then what do I do is I think through what are the main points that I need to make to give somebody a good enough answer to this question I just write out like what those main points are then I can like word Smith those and turn them into subheadings but having that outline now I know these are the points I need to make and then under each one I just write enough information to make the point and that's it so I am not thinking like when I start a blog post this is going to be 1,200w blog post I'm thinking these are the points I need to make and then I write and when I'm done I'm like oh yeah that ended up about 1300 words now to make that process a little bit easier do good research if you know the topic of the blog post kind of before you go into this process the time is going to be so much faster and easier to get this done because you're going to have a pretty good idea of what people's question are kind of their main question and then what their following questions will be now if you're just brand new to all this that's totally okay uh you can still do this and even if you're not brand new to this but you're brand new to your Niche um just get out there and do that research another that I love now we don't talk about AI a ton on this channel but something that I do love to use AI for is idea Generation Um and sometimes especially if I'm new to a topic I might just prompt an AI like chat GPT or something and say you know give me a list of things that are surrounding this topic or whatever just get a couple ideas you don't have to use every single thing that it gives you but take some of the ideas and use that to your benefit some of the ideas that you might just not have had because you didn't have the experience absolutely and if you're new to this I would shoot for a minimum of about a thousand words for a blog post we actually tried this we did this as a case study we started a new website a few years ago and we had we trained someone one person to write all the content on this website but we said write 750 word articles just make them good you know be be concise but be thorough and here's what we found we got the same quality of blog post from our writers that were writing 1300w blog posts we just got less information and those blog posts didn't do as well when Wix says that you know a thousand plus right is is better to get more backlinks I I don't disagree with that like true I'm almost never going to write a blog post under a thousand words unless it's a resource that has something else content wise that's just not written words yeah something else in that video that you and Jim quite a while back that something you talked about was this principle of the extra hour um and I really really liked that it's just this idea that when you write for the query when you're not just writing for some word some specific word count you can actually uh take the time get all the information out there but then spend an extra hour on the post improving it adding those things that make long posts more helpful and to me that's the huge takeaway from all this is even a shorter post a thousand words and I know for some of you that's a long post but that's kind of on the shorter end of post so even like a thousand words or 1500 words you can make that post so incredibly helpful by adding things like data conclusions that are unique to you maybe that someone else didn't just draw in their blog post and then you took it and put it in your blog post all of these extra resources even in a shorter post will make your post more likely to get back links more likely to be shared across social and it's all just probably within about an extra hour you can do some of these really helpful things so some examples of additional resources you could add some of them in an extra hour some of them might take a little bit longer for example a longer one would be making a video that helps to illustrate some of the more visual elements of the blog post if you're telling someone how to do something more often than not a video clip is going to work way better than even photos um paired with words so you can give the instruction in words and even have photos but then if you could just have a video clip showing it to them real quick it doesn't we're not talking about like you know amazing cinematography or anything like that I'm talking about literally like putting your phone on a little tripod or something that can hold it point it at your hands while you do the thing that you're trying to explain to them and that's it like if you want to talk through it you even better but if you don't want to worry about audio just run some music right in the background no big deal and this can be very very easy to do but there are some other things that you can do that work incredibly well Nathan mentioned data if you can gather data from official sources uh this is probably the easiest way to get data is you can either go to like Google Scholar or you can find a government website with data they're usually horrible in terms of user experience but they often have good data so if you can take their data and put it into a nice format on your website fantastic or you can run your own experiment all sorts of things that you could do sometimes an infographic can help um people to visualize something that you've been trying to explain sometimes I've had numerous blog posts where I wrote it and there was some calculation that they needed to be able to make and I told them in the blog post how to do the calculation and then I embedded a little calculator that does the calculation where they just input the fields and it calculates it for them those additional resources often will take an extra hour sometimes even less yeah and a lot of times these resources you add you may not be the first one to ever add this resource to this specific blog post on this specific topic but it really doesn't matter if you are doing it from your unique perspective we've talked about so much lately the value of US bloggers is that we bring unique value and perspective not just rehashing everything that's already out there and so if you do a some research study or you collect data and your data is a little bit different you have all of a sudden added something unique and new to the internet that just wasn't there and so even if the current number one ranking article already has a data table you could do your own research study and prove them wrong or find out that it was very similar either way you're adding that value for the reader one thing that bloggers are really good at is taking data that somebody's generated and citing it over and over and over again without actually verifying anything yep and it's not uncommon for the data either to get changed or for the original study to have been poorly done yes and when that happens everybody's perpetuating what is a lie right you might find like the first five block posts on the the so what do you do you write a block post and you say there's some information out there and I think it's important to address the original information because if your response varies widely from what's considered the consensus Google might think no but the consensus is more likely to be correct and you might not ever rank so it's important to address it like there's this data out there that exists I found it very questionable because of my own experience so I ran my own test or I did my own study or I found government data or whatever it is is and boom now you present your information and now you're an authority because you did the real work and all those bloggers that went and gathered that data from somebody else now they're all going to quote you and for all of you guys who are project 24 members out there you all know what we're talking about this is something that is pretty commonly addressed within project 24 but go into phase four of the blogging system and check out the lessons on Staple post there's multiple lessons talking about various types of staple posts now you've probably already been through them but go through them again but thinking through the lens of a shorter post take some of the concepts and the principles that we teach in those lessons and apply them to your shorter posts so that you can grab this Super Value and cram it all into those shorter posts awesome and for all of you who are watching I'd love to hear from you what are some of the resources that you've put in your blog posts that have driven the most traffic or gotten you the most backlinks um that have gotten you the most social shares what are those things that are making your blog posts the best that they can be and one more thing you may or may not have noticed that even though we're in Idaho there is is a shark in the frame of this video let us know in the comments if you found it time to go eat some ice cream I guess [Music] so he's not attacking so yeah safe for now I think so I like the Neapolitan ones with the chocolate vanilla three little sandwiches and the Price Is Right on these oh yeah it's like what 250 for box of 12 or something they're so cheap and let's be honest they're not that great but better than nothing they're so convenient you convenient y you don't have to scoop it out into a bowl or anything yep you just unwrap it and eat it I wonder if anyone will watch us eat these entire things I don't know if you're still watching let us know in the comments how many bites do you get out of an ice cream sandwich I don't know I I ate half of mine in the intro so I didn't think about mine until now so it's too late I know how few bites I can have somewhere between one and two one and two plus a brain [Music] freeze

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