Post Length – What is the Ideal Length?

This is a guest article by Viyoma. You too can be part of this great knowledge sharing community. Take a look at our guest blogging guidelines.

When you write, for a mixed audience, every reader segment is important to you. This is crucial when you write on varied subjects. You write about politics, you write about sports, you share personal experiences and also voice your aspirations on your blog. The style of writing also differs from Poetry to Paraphrasing, Fiction to humour.

Now if you’re a blogger of varied subjects, the onus lies on you, to hold your reader’s attention span. When your posts run into lengths, however interesting the subject may be, it taxes the reader’s attention span.  This is where the “Economics of Length” comes in.

Many a times, we come across generic comments like “Good Post”,” Interesting Read”.  Such evasive and generic types make you realize the reader’s seriousness (or the lack of it). Most of them tend to glance through the posts, for a quick eye-view and land in the comments section.  Risks of quick browsing are even higher, when the posts are lengthy.  You may wonder why at all they take the trouble of commenting in such cases. But look at it this way. They may be regulars at your blog; it’s just that a particular content didn’t interest them. They didn’t bother to read through fully, because the length was taxing.

As a writer of varied subjects, one cannot afford to lose readership on “length” grounds.

An economical length ensures clear transmission of constructive thoughts. To avoid getting lengthy on posts, it is essential to identify where we are elongating. A few common elongating sections include:

Quote- Unquote Boxes: We tend to get into Quote- Unquote mode, where the crux of the matter can be explained in a passive sense. Many a times this leads to deviation from the main point.

Justifiers: Insertion of justifications can be restricted to areas, where ambiguity is expected. Every thought, every line need not be justified. Infact such over cautious approach may adversely challenge the reader’s comprehensive ability.

Examples and Anecdotes: They are powerful tools, but only when used at appropriate places. Misplaced ones dilute the significance of the post, altogether.

Images and Graphics/ Videos: True that a picture speaks a 1000 words. But Images and Graphics only “aid” your thoughts, and “don’t substitute” them. Too many intermittent pictures elongate the articles, and at times without adding the required substance. With videos, one needs to be all the more careful. Videos are not only temptations hard to resist, but also occupy a chuck space, projecting a lengthy blog entry.

At the end of it, some of you may still want to maintain that “Length Matters”. Yes it does. But it entirely depends on your outlook towards the audience. The economics of length is essential to those who target a mixed lot. A niche or a targeted writer will any day continue to “key”, words at length.

  • http://www.funwidmasti.com Siddharth Sharma

    Thnx for the valuable help..!!!
    I think that Writing around 400 words post will fetch a good traffic and few backlinks will make your ranking jump on search engine.!!!
    Sid..!!! :)

    • http://www.bloggodown.com Gautam

      The point is not in the number of words but the quality they possess. Even 200 words can work wonders.
      And if you write 3000 words, people will not leave if u have content which keeps them glued to your text. A great example of this is viperchill which does this on a regular basis.

  • http://blazingminds.co.uk Karen

    I’ve found in the past that if a post does start getting too big, I will split in to parts, this usually also has the added benefit of a reader coming back to read the conclusion of the post ;)

    • http://www.bloggodown.com Gautam

      Karen,
      Series posts are usually a hit among readers. Although bigger posts have the advantage of making your readers satisfied and also helping in saving some of their time

  • http://afemalesperspective.com Sabrina

    I think that you are spot on. I have to admit that on many occasions, I have left blogs where the recent posts are too long and not structurally appealing. In some cases it seemed as though the blogger just throw it on the page not caring how it looked.

    I think it is great that bloggers want to provide the reader with lots of information. However, as you stated they have to keep in mind how to effectively communicate with their audience which goes behind the words that they are writing down.

  • http://constructionpipeline.blogspot.com/ Greg

    This really is a good question as to how long each average blog post should be. I am in true believer in that quality is the key and if the topic your writing on goes on and on you should split the topic into smaller pieces. Goal is to have them coming back for more anyways!

  • http://Www.amightyquinn@blogger.com Mighty Quinn

    I’m literally just starting my blogging journey, and did wonder about this. Thank you for your article, and also explaining the terms again. As you stated, it has been “several” years since I’ve been in school and remembered it all. I also appreciate how you broke it all out in a simple to read simple to understand format. Very well done.
    Thank you
    Amightyquinn.blogspot.com

  • http://anandwebinfo.blogspot.com Anand Web Info

    I’m literally just starting my blogging journey, and did wonder about this. Thank you for your article. I am sure, it can help me for my upcoming blogs.

    Thanks.

  • http://www.myatlantainjurylawyer.com/ Julie

    Ideal length of blog depends on to the point discussion with clear words and so it can justify the length of blog.
    Thanks

  • http://ictnorth.ca Wayne LaPlante

    Since guest blogger postings, on this site,  should be a minimum of 500 words  I think this would be an acceptable average blog post ideal length.

  • rnd technologies

    Good thought.