Short articles are bad. They work against you in Google searches, and they give the impression that you don’t know what you’re talking about. Write longer articles.
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[Editor’s Note] Ummm…Maybe Expand on This a Little? Please?
If you wanted to learn more about why longer articles are beneficial for your website, but came across this gem of an “article,” you’d be rightfully disappointed. Now, we may have exaggerated this example a wee bit, but your reaction may be exactly how your clients may feel when they click on one of your site’s fluff pieces.
When writing content, it’s easy to fall into the misconception that clients don’t want to waste time reading lengthy articles. Therefore, you write brief snippets of information and then end with a suggestion to contact you for more information. Although this may save you time and effort, it may also cost you clients.
Cutting Short Articles From Your Site’s Diet: The Benefits of Long-Form Writing
Too often, content writing is like cotton candy: a wispy little bit of something that tastes sweet for a moment, but has no nutritional value. Sure, it looks good and may satisfy the reader for the whole two minutes it takes to finish it, but he’ll quickly become hungry for something with more substance.
A poorly constructed 250-word post that has little or no research and is comprised of mostly incongruous fillers is the new junk food of web marketing content. Although it may have been sustainable when you were young, as your website grows, it’s just not good enough any more. Your readers crave solid, filling pieces, dense with long-lasting information. By giving them what they want, you not only satisfy their cravings, but you also make them want to come back for more—thus increasing your website traffic and building a better rating.
A thoroughly thought out and meaty, informative article not only allows readers to actually learn something from you, but also gives your site enticing credibility. For instance, short form articles can’t compare with long-form articles in:
- Google ratings. Google’s “in-depth article” feature, which helps readers find articles that have the most information and substance to their searches, feeds off long-form content. Therefore, longer articles get premier placement when it comes to Google searches. This not only makes your website more visible, but also increases your click-through rate as these articles are seen by more readers. In addition, longer articles require more time to read, making clients stay on your site longer (on average, five to eight minutes longer per article).
- Reader attention. You may think that clients don’t want to commit to reading anything longer than a Facebook post. However, what they really don’t want is to commit to reading an article that doesn’t tell them anything they didn’t already know. If the content doesn’t speak to them or engage them, but is merely there to take up space, then your readers will quickly lose interest. Although longer articles may seem daunting, once the reader sees that it is high quality and not just fluff, then he’ll be compelled to read more.
- Quality information. When a potential client clicks on your articles, he expects to have his questions and concerns addressed. Otherwise, what’s the point? However, short-form articles can barely cover even the basics of a topic—not even close to all the essential information the reader wants. By extending your articles to include more facts and details, you allow the reader to get the answers he needs while also showing him that he can trust the breadth of your knowledge.
So the next time you feel like writing a short article to merely fill space, think about how expanding that article can improve your site’s traffic and validity. Then write long.