What Blogging Tips Are You Missing?

by Sherryl Perry on May 27, 2014

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As a blogger, do you sometimes feel that the “rules” that you followed last week have changed? For example, are you still writing blog post titles that are close to 70 characters long? What if I told you that it’s now best to limit them to 55? Did you know that research shows that longer blog posts attract more links (which helps your page rank)? Did you know that longer means 1,500+ words? Well, that’s definitely up for debate but there’s plenty of research to support that. At the same time, there are definitely exceptions (think Seth Godin style). So, where can you start? What resources are available that you can refer to for answers to these questions (and many more like them)?

How Do Your Blog Post Titles Show Up in the SERPs?

A couple of weeks ago, I wrote about how title tags are displaying in the SERPs (search engine results pages) after Google redesigned the SERP format (a few months ago). Simple changes that Google made (such as font sizes) effect how your blog posts display in searches, images, videos and AdWords.

In his article New Title Tag Guidelines & Preview Tool on Moz.com, Peter J. Meyers shows examples of how these changes have affected the search results pages. After his analysis, Peter concludes that while “there’s no magic number“:

I feel comfortable saying that 55 characters is a reasonable title-length limit under the new design, but keep in mind that your title lengths may vary quite a bit.”

How Many Characters Should Be In That?

A recommended character length for the title of your blog post is good to know but wouldn’t it be nice to have other recommendations as well? While there’s always room for discussion, I found Kevan Lee’s article on BufferApp.com, The Ideal Length of Everything Online, Backed by Research, offers a lot of insight into the answers to these questions.

In his article, Kevan backs up his findings with research from resources including: Buddy Media, Jeff Bullas, BlitzLocal, Copyblogger, KISSMetrics, Medium, SerpIQ, Derek Halpern, MailChimp, TED and Daily Blog Tips. Hopefully, you’ll find his post as helpful as I do.

For example, would you like to know:

  • What’s the ideal length of a tweet?
  • How many characters should your Facebook post be (for maximum engagement)?
  • What’s the ideal length for your headline on Google+?
  • How many words should be in your blog post headlines?
  • What’s the ideal length of a blog post (in minutes and words)
  • How wide should your paragraphs be?
  • How many characters should you use in the subject line of your emails?
  • How many minutes should your presentation be?
  • What’s the best number of characters for a domain name?

How Can You Write a Long Blog Post That Gets Read?

Recent studies indicate that longer blog posts attract more links than shorter ones. In the article that I referenced above, Kevan Lee suggests that research shows that “The ideal length of a blog post is 7 minutes, 1,600 words”. So, how can you keep your reader’s attention?

Mitt Ray answers that question in his article 5 Must Follow Rules While Writing Long Blog on Business2Community.com. As always, I recommend reading the article for yourself but (in the hopes of piquing your interest), I’ll bullet his points here:

  1. Avoid Repetition
  2. Include Images
  3. Make it Easy to Read and Navigate Through
  4. Place Share Buttons at the Bottom
  5. Don’t Force It

Mitt’s uses examples and screenshots from these respected resources: SocialMediaExaminer.com, SocialMarketingWriting.com, Lilach Bullock (Socialable.co.uk), QuickSprout, Ileane Smith (BasicBlogTips.com), BrightEdge.com, SociallyStacked.com to support his recommendations.

How Do You Write a Catchy Blog Post Title?

Hopefully, the resources that I’ve featured this week are arming you with a lot of tips, ideas and recommendations to help you write blog posts that: appear in the search results, grab the attention of your readers and help your blog thrive. Part of writing a killer blog post includes writing a title that will get someone to click on it.

Last week, I came upon 100+ Blog Post Title Templates That Grabs Attention by Pauline Cabera on TwelveSkip.com and I bookmarked it to share with you. In Pauline’s article, she shares the following 6 tips (before going on to share her 100 blog post title templates) with us:

  1. Use Catchy Adjective Words
  2. Use Numbers
  3. Use Popular Search Queries
  4. Keep It Short & Focused
  5. Never Mislead
  6. Don’t Limit Yourself

As usual, I’ve only highlighted the main points here to get you interested and I recommend you hop over to Pauline’s blog and read her article.

What Types of Tools Do Freelance Bloggers Need?

In his guest post (onBloggingWizard.com), Karol K shares 20 Awesome Tools To Use When Joining The Freelance World As A Blogger. What is freelance blogging? Karol defines it as

. . . about you finding other blog owners that need content, and providing it to them”.

While he’s written this post focused on tools for freelancers, many of these tools can be beneficial to anyone who is blogging in hopes of earning an income. To be more helpful, Karl breaks his list into the following five categories:

  1. Productivity tools
  2. Research tools
  3. Outreach tools
  4. Writing Tools
  5. Data Tools

While he’s included many tools and resources that I was familiar with, quite a few were new to me and I’ll be checking them out. Hopefully, you’ll find something new in his list that you can use. (As always, feel free to share your favorite tools in the comments.)

Over To You:

What are your thoughts? Have you started to keep the 55 character limitation in mind when you’re writing your blog posts (or are you still using up to 70)? Did you find the article on the ideal length of “everything” online helpful? Did you find the “rules” for writing, the title templates and the blogging tools helpful? We’d love to know.

To learn more about this week’s featured authors, you can connect with Pete Meyers, Kevan Lee, Mitt Ray, Pauline Cabera, Karol K and me on Google+.

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Ammar Zeb
Twitter:
August 30, 2014 at 3:02 pm

Once again a great article Shrryl, just love to visit your blog daily and read your awesome content.

Thanks ! Keep doing the great job for us ….

amit kumar August 27, 2014 at 1:00 am

well thanks for the post.. I use to write original content,mainly a post by mecntain more than 500 words.. instead of that i am not getting a good amount of traffic.. please help..
espically on how to choose tag and attractive heading…

Sherryl Perry
Twitter:
August 29, 2014 at 12:55 pm

Amit,
I just took a quick look at your blog and I can honestly say that I have no idea who your target reader is (other than they must be “young” since that’s one of the keywords in your domain name).

The headline of the first article that I saw was about the Nokia X series and then the next one asks how you can know if an Indian girl likes or loves you. Next, you have an article that focuses on hot photos of John Cena (from the WWE). Then, you have an article about making money by blogging and another one about getting an AdSense account approved.

I think you need to start by asking yourself who are you writing your blog for and why are you writing it. Are you writing it as a personal journal, to drive traffic to a website or do you have hopes of monetizing your blog?

The answer could possibly be that you actually should have a second domain and blog where you write for bloggers and keep this one targeted to someone who would be interested in John Cena and Raja Natwarlal.

You also mentioned headlines. The article I linked to below will point you to an interesting tool that should help you write better headlines. I hope this helps.
Sherryl Perry recently posted..How Can you Improve Your Website Blog? #FridayFindsMy Profile

Kevin Duncan
Twitter:
July 16, 2014 at 4:10 pm

Hi again, Sherryl.

Nice roundup! I came across the article suggesting 1,600 words as the ideal blog post length before, but most of these others were new to me.

Personally, my posts are between 1,250 and 2,500 words. When I write, I tend to write quite a bit!

It would be interesting to see which of my posts tend to be more successful — those well above the 1,600 number, those near it, or those below it. My blog is quite new (less than 2 months), so I don’t have enough content to do any real comparisons. I’ll have to remember this one for the future.

Hope you have a great rest of your Wednesday…
Kevin Duncan recently posted..There is no magic formula for achieving blogging successMy Profile

Sherryl Perry
Twitter:
July 17, 2014 at 11:23 am

Hi Kevin,
I just read your post. That was a fun read! Your message is clear and on point. I wouldn’t have believed that article was nearly 1,400 words. (I checked out of curiosity.) It’s an easy read and definitely kept my interest.

I have a techie/business background. So, one of the first things that I did when I started blogging was to set up an Excel spreadsheet. I track mundane things like plugin updates and any issues that crop up on my site. I also track solutions that I’ve implemented and links to tutorials. This spreadsheet has saved me countless time.

The other thing that I track is new strategies. For example, I’ve recently been experimenting with “sticky” posts in Triberr. I’m logging those posts in my spreadsheet. That way, when I look at my analytics (down the road), I can compare the traffic and comments to those posts that weren’t sticky.

I hope you have a great week. Thanks so much for adding to the conversation. (Now, I’m off to your blog to add my two cents there.)
Sherryl Perry recently posted..Tracking Changes to Your Website Blog and Social Media StrategyMy Profile

Akshat Verma July 9, 2014 at 5:14 am

What should be the ideal length of a blog post so that it can rank higher in search results?

Sherryl Perry
Twitter:
July 9, 2014 at 11:09 am

Akshat,
The recent research that I’ve been reading is suggesting that the ideal length of a blog post is now in the 1,500 to 1,600 word length. Here’s a direct quote from Kevan Lee’s post “The Ideal Length of Everything Online, Backed by Research”:

“. . . Medium’s research on this front says that the ideal blog post is seven minutes long. To arrive at this number, Medium measured the average total seconds spent on each post and compared this to the post length. All Medium posts are marked with a time signature for how long the read should be. After adjusting their analysis for a glut of shorter posts (overall, 74% of posts are under 3 minutes long and 94% are under 6 minutes long), they came to their conclusion:”

It’s really a good article if you get a chance to read it, you’ll find all sorts of helpful data.
Sherryl Perry recently posted..Ready To Take Your Blog to the Next Level? #FridayFindsMy Profile

Don Purdum
Twitter:
July 4, 2014 at 11:42 am

Hi Sheryl,

I’m new to your blog and discovered you via Adrienne Smith. I found your article to be fascinating and very educational.

I like to keep my blogs between 800 – 1600 words ideally. The title is extremely important. The way I approach it is to think about what are people struggling and what problems do they have. My title and content is always geared towards solving a problem.

I’ve learned that I can do that concisely and relevantly in the 1500 word range. It’s long enough to give them what they need and short enough they don’t lose interest. Plus, I like to keep one thought to one page. It makes for great SEO and if more needs to be expanded upon there is another article and you can link internally link it.

Thanks again for the great tips. I look forward to reading through your articles and learning more from you.
Don Purdum recently posted..If Someone Only Visits One Page on My Website, Is It A Big Deal?My Profile

Sherryl Perry
Twitter:
July 5, 2014 at 2:39 pm

Hi Don,
Thanks for letting me know that you found my blog through Adrienne. Her roundup posts are great and I just featured her article in my most recent Friday Finds series.

I use a word range similar to what you use. I used to put an arbitrary limit of 1,000 words on my posst because I was under the impression that readers may not want to make that much of a time commitment. (I was editing my posts down.)

Since I’ve lifted that limit, I’ve found that my longer articles are being received well. I think people are tired of seeing the same content rehashed over and over again and they’re willing to spend more time reading content that they can learn from.

Thanks for the tip about gearing your title towards solving a problem. I haven’t found the formula for writing great titles yet. Lately, I’ve been experimenting with titles that ask questions. Now that I’m thinking about it, that could imply that there is a solution/answer in the post.

Thanks for adding your insight. It’s very nice to meet you here. I went to follow you on Twitter only to discover that I was already following. Now, I have a better idea of who you are! 🙂
Sherryl Perry recently posted..Ready To Take Your Blog to the Next Level? #FridayFindsMy Profile

Maxwell ivey
Twitter:
June 28, 2014 at 2:46 am

Hi Sheryl; I started using the 120 character limit on twitter a while back. I try to keep titles short. when you say 55 characters are you including the blog name? Or are you just talking about the part of the url that is the post title? congratulations you are getting to b a regular in adrienne’s thankful thursday posts. just started a new blog last week to share more about my story and hopefully clarify the two blogs as a result. Hope to see you over there soon. thanks again for the post and take care, Max
Maxwell ivey recently posted..The story beginsMy Profile

Sherryl Perry
Twitter:
June 28, 2014 at 9:54 am

Hi Maxwell,

The 55 character recommendation is for the title of your blog post. Google has changed the way that our web pages display in the search results. So, depending on things like fonts and capital letters, the titles of our posts may not fully display. 55 is the best guess at this point.

Even if our titles are truncated, they’re still visible to the search engines. So, we can keep using all 70 characters if we like. If you’re going to do that, it’s best to keep your keywords toward the beginning. Also, make sure that your title will still make sense and be interesting to someone who is searching on your topic.

I’m very happy that Adrienne shares my content. I feature her here too in my Friday Finds posts. Our skills compliment each others nicely.

I’m off to check out your new blog. Good for you!
Sherryl Perry recently posted..4 SEO Tips to Optimize your WordPress BlogMy Profile

Ilka June 27, 2014 at 6:04 am

Hi Sherryl!

I just hopped over from Adrienne and I am glad I’ve found you. I am thinking about SEO and longer posts for a while. So I read all your advice with greatest interest.

Focusing on SEO in the headlines might be easiest to do. But I struggle with SEO in the content. I have two posts which are very successful in Google searches. Others are not. And I don’t really know why.

Thanks again for this post. I will definitely browse some more or your posts.

All the Best, Ilka
Ilka recently posted..Introducing 10 famous female scientists – the first three!My Profile

Sherryl Perry
Twitter:
June 27, 2014 at 10:53 am

Hi Ilka,

It’s nice to meet you here! Thanks so much for letting me know that you found me on Adrienne’s blog. That’s great to know. I love Adrienne’s blog and I recognize you from your comments there.

It would be great if you could identify what you did differently in those two posts. Did you incorporate video or more images than usual? Could it be with your promotion efforts? Is it possible that there are backlinks from another site that points to either of those articles?

One of the things that I do is track the meta-tag info (what’s read by the search engines) for each of my posts. That keeps me from forgetting to enter things like keyword-rich descriptions and alt- text tags on my images. I also track my promotion efforts to ensure that I submit my post to sites like BizSugar.

There are lots of simple things that you can do to help with SEO. In one of my favorite (older) posts on SEO, I wrote about simple things you can do (like adding keyword-rich headlines) to your articles. I linked to that article below. You may find it helpful.

Thanks again for adding to the conversation. Have a nice weekend and please let me know if you have any questions.
Sherryl Perry recently posted..4 SEO Tips to Optimize your WordPress BlogMy Profile

Ilka June 29, 2014 at 8:44 am

Thanks Sherryl!

Yay! I am learning here 🙂

I never used BizSugar before.

I compared my posts and I guess I was just really lucky with the title of these two successful posts (successful by views, not comments actually). One post was ‘You cannot swallow insulin’ and lots of people seem to search ‘swallow insulin’ or ‘why not swallow insulin’ on Google.

I think I have to spent a little more time on analyzing my statistics 😉
Ilka recently posted..Introducing 10 famous female scientists – the first three!My Profile

Sherryl Perry
Twitter:
June 29, 2014 at 10:39 am

Ilka,
BizSugar is one of my top sources of referral traffic. If you join, friend me. Sometimes, I’ll go directly to my friends screen when I’m looking for new content to share and vote for.

Knowing which keywords people are searching on can be a huge help when you’re optimizing your posts. I started by jotting down keywords from some of my most popular posts (both views, comments and low bounce rate). Once you get a handle on which ones people search for the most, incorporating them becomes a habit.

Thanks again for joining the conversation. I hope you’re having a wonderful weekend.
Sherryl Perry recently posted..Tips for Bloggers | Before You Press that Publish ButtonMy Profile

Lorraine Reguly
Twitter:
June 27, 2014 at 2:01 am

Holy smokes, Sherryl. I’m going to be busy, busy, busy for a while after reading this post! I’ll admit I’ve been lacking for a few months now in learning and keeping up with what’s going on in the techie world. (And I’m hanging my head in shame.)

You’re always so ready and willing to provide me with the knowledge I need. Thanks for the many resources you linked to in this post. Now that I have my own site instead of a free blog, I should be spending more time than ever staying on top of things… 😉
Lorraine Reguly recently posted..My Son Was In An Accident (a car crash/collision)My Profile

Sherryl Perry
Twitter:
June 27, 2014 at 10:14 am

Hi Lorraine

Your “Holy Smokes” comment made me smile. I know the feeling about being busy and then coming upon a post with a lot of content (and I can just picture my to-do list growing as I read it). 🙂

Congrats on owning your site! I appreciate your kind words and your continuing support. If you ever have any questions, you know where to find me. Meanwhile, thanks for dropping by and joining the conversation.
Sherryl Perry recently posted..Time To Tweak Your Strategy for Commenting on Blogs?My Profile

Lorraine Reguly
Twitter:
June 27, 2014 at 10:50 am

Glad I made you smile. I bet you don’t do much of that, with all the techie stuff going through your brain!

I took a look at most of what you linked to. Surprisingly, I am getting better at this stuff. I liked the template link so much I sent it out to my email list. I forgot to credit you, though, even though it isn’t yours per se. But hey, a girl can’t give away all her secrets, can she? *wink wink*

Have a great weekend, Sherryl.
And keep smiling. 😀
Lorraine Reguly recently posted..Blog Awards: What are your views?My Profile

Sherryl Perry
Twitter:
June 28, 2014 at 9:29 am

I smile often Lorraine. 🙂 I actually enjoy all this techie stuff and I’ve always loved teaching. (I started my career as an elementary school teacher.) So, explaining something techie (in a way that non-techies can understand) makes me happy.

I’m glad to hear that you found the template link valuable enough to share. Pauline Cabrera writes some great content.

You have a wonderful weekend too!

sherman smith
Twitter:
June 26, 2014 at 2:10 pm

Hey Sherryl,

I never really noticed the titles for my post. So far I’ve been lucky with them. But I was attracted to this articles because i do feel like I’m missing something within my blog. With all the updates and changes that constantly occur, sometimes it can be a bit difficult to keep up with if you have a busy schedule.

I found that if I keep my blog posts between 1,000 and 1500 words, then I get better results. Whenever I go over 1500, some of my readers will complain. I guess it gets long and drawn out for them whenever I do this.

Thanks for sharing these great tips! I hope you have a great weekend!
sherman smith recently posted..Why It’s Good To Lower Your Bounce Rate?My Profile

Sherryl Perry
Twitter:
June 27, 2014 at 9:35 am

Hi Sherman,

It’s always a pleasure seeing you here! I am constantly questioning whether or not I’ve chosen the right title for my posts. So, I’m glad to hear that my title for this article may have piqued your interest. 🙂

Between 1,000 and 1,500 words is within my comfort level too. I actually used to write long posts and edit them down (or break them into two parts) because I was trying to keep them short.

I’ve had readers comment about the length of some of my posts but (so far at least) they all seem to be thanking me for the content and not really saying anything negative.

Yesterday, I was on Adrienne’s blog and even though she kept her post relatively short, it was so packed with resources (that were going to take time to read) that I left her a comment about giving me my homework for the weekend. 🙂 As you say , it can be difficult to keep up with all the updates and posts but it’s some of those long posts (and posts with lots of links to great content) that arm us with the most information.

Thanks for adding to the conversation and you have a great weekend too!
Sherryl Perry recently posted..Tracking Changes to Your Website Blog and Social Media StrategyMy Profile

Enstine Muki
Twitter:
June 26, 2014 at 10:56 am

Hi Sherryl,

We know things are changing every single day. Everything else is changing except change. What works in those days no longer holds now (or do but with less results) The only solution is to change with changes around us.

Now, I sometimes go beyond the new 55 limits but I make sure the most catchy part of the phrase goes before that limit.

In any case, this post is filled with really useful tips and references. I’ve got to follow those links and read more.

Do have a wonderful weekend ahead
Enstine Muki recently posted..Monitor Backlinks ~ Best Backlink Checker for better SEOMy Profile

Sherryl Perry
Twitter:
June 27, 2014 at 9:20 am

Hi Enstine,

You have a healthy outlook toward change. (I embrace change too.) The trick is staying on top of it so that we know something has changed before we’re standing scratching our heads asking what just happened? (Sort of like when I got whacked by a Google algorithm change and lost all that organic traffic.) That way we can be proactive rather than reactive.

I do the same thing as you with the 55 characters. If it makes sense to go over that limit, I do. I just make sure that valuable keywords aren’t going to be dropped.

You have a wonderful weekend too! I just read your post about the Monitor Backlinks service. It looks interesting and if anyone has been on the edge whether or not to sign up, your 50% discount coupon may sway them.
Sherryl Perry recently posted..Time To Tweak Your Strategy for Commenting on Blogs?My Profile

harish June 26, 2014 at 7:51 am

Hi Sherryl ,

thank you for your post on how many characters have to to be used as a title of blog posts. madam i have a dougt regarding that if we use more than 30 characters it will be little difficult for the users to read all the title name .i think by using little title names users may go through the actual content(theme) of the post by reading title itself (they dont have that much time to read all the content).if he was impressed with the content the he will go through the hole post .will you please clarify my dought.
harish recently posted..How to unlock Idea NetsetterMy Profile

Sherryl Perry
Twitter:
June 26, 2014 at 4:07 pm

Hi Harish,

Have you tried searching on your blog post titles to see how they show up in the search results? The 55 character recommendation seems to be a good guideline to me. What’s most important is to write a title that grabs the attention of your potential readers and to write a meta-description and first paragraph that will pique someone’s interest enough to click on it. Writing great headlines is an art that I continue to try to master. There are lots of blog posts out there about it with some great tips to get us started.

Thanks for dropping by and taking the time to join the conversation.
Sherryl Perry recently posted..Google Website Signals SERPs and Title Tags #FridayFindsMy Profile

Rohit Singh
Twitter:
June 21, 2014 at 7:12 pm

Hi,

I would like to say one thing which I mostly focus on is providing great quality content because the first step to get your blog post viral starts from your content quality, If it’s good then you can extract more from your promotional strategies

so one must focus on writing quality content for getting maximum traffic and learn some basic seo skill to get higher rankings in search engines also try to provide value to your readers and don’t just write for search engines if you content is great and appealing then can see some great success

Cheers and keep posting such great content

Sherryl Perry
Twitter:
June 23, 2014 at 9:43 am

Hi Rohit,

I agree. You can’t beat quality content. People are getting tired of reading the same content rehashed over and over again. If it’s worth writing, then it’s worth taking the time to be sure we’re adding value. There are so many ways to be original. We can share our perspective from our personal experience and we can also link to great resources that will bring value to our readers.

As you point out, quality content needs to come first. After all, we’re writing for humans not search bots.

Thanks for joining the conversation. Have a great week!
Sherryl Perry recently posted..Time To Tweak Your Strategy for Commenting on Blogs?My Profile

Santhosh Kumar
Twitter:
June 20, 2014 at 1:41 pm

Hi sherryl, Great post for a beginner like me to the blogging world. All the titles i have used till now are lessthan 30 characters and now by your post i have to think of my titles and change it. I am very much thankful to have your suggestions and keep going.

Sherryl Perry
Twitter:
June 21, 2014 at 8:55 am

Hi Santhosh,
It may be a good idea for you to use more than 30 characters in your titles. Although, it also depends on your content and your readers. What type of titles do your readers respond to? A quick look at your Google analytics can show you which of your posts are the most popular. Although I haven’t written many “How To” posts lately, those are always popular here on my blog.

Thanks for dropping by and weighing in on this!
Sherryl Perry recently posted..Google Website Signals SERPs and Title Tags #FridayFindsMy Profile

Muhammad Mairaj
Twitter:
June 16, 2014 at 2:56 am

Awesome post. In this article you beautifully share blogging tips. Which is the most important element in blogging and i am very much confused about the title of blog. but now you clear my mind.

Thanks for nice sharing.
Muhammad Mairaj recently posted..How To Write Articles For MoneyMy Profile

Sherryl Perry
Twitter:
June 21, 2014 at 8:35 am

Hi Muhammad,
The subtle changes that Google made to their SERP result page format could potentially have an impact on whether or not someone clicks on our links. Keeping in mind that longer titles could be truncated can certainly help us.

Thanks for dropping by and adding to the conversation. I’m glad you enjoyed my post!
Sherryl Perry recently posted..Time To Tweak Your Strategy for Commenting on Blogs?My Profile

Sarah June 12, 2014 at 11:40 am

Hello, Sherryl!

These are some great tips you’ve shared! I’m glad I stumbled upon your article. It is indeed difficult to acquire readers and what’s even harder is to have them read the whole article and keep them interested. These tips would help greatly in doing all that. Thanks for sharing!

Sherryl Perry
Twitter:
June 13, 2014 at 2:38 pm

Hi Sarah,

Thanks for letting me know that you found my post helpful. One of the things that I didn’t mention is the use of “heading” tags. (For example, the text above: (How Many Characters Should Be In That?”) Breaking up our content with keyword-rich text that are tagged as headings helps make it easier for our readers and the search engines like them too!
Sherryl Perry recently posted..Tips for Bloggers | Before You Press that Publish ButtonMy Profile

Emmanueli
Twitter:
June 9, 2014 at 4:01 pm

Great post I must say, I have began blogging full time and I am finding such posts educative and hope to work on the tips. My question is blogging on a hosted domain a bad idea or is it bad for your blog. I have just changed the domain and using blogger platform, what is your take on that?

Thank you

Sherryl Perry
Twitter:
June 10, 2014 at 12:28 pm

Hi Emmanueli,

I’m a fan of self-hosted sites with your own domain name. For one thing, you own and control your own content. All though it’s not common, there have been bloggers who have had their sites shut down because the host (such as blogger or WordPress.com) has decided that there was some sort of violation. It’s a risk that not everyone is aware of.

It’s good that you own your own domain name. So, you’re in a position to host your site yourself and you will be able to import your current blog. (You’ll also need to redirect it so that you won’t lose the traffic that you’re receiving now.)

Good luck and thanks for dropping by.
Sherryl Perry recently posted..Tips for Bloggers | Before You Press that Publish ButtonMy Profile

Ann07 June 9, 2014 at 8:40 am

This is such an awesome post, I must say.

“How Can You Write a Long Blog Post That Gets Read?”

Well, we know how much people love reading ‘short’ form of posts. However, I believe that not everything will fit for that size. It only means that it is indeed necessary to create long-form content.

Whether your post will be in short or long form, they always have pros and cons for us to debate. So I think these two content sizes are fair balance. The only thing that you should consider is the rules. There are rules in writing short and long forms, and I think their rules are much more important to think about.

So the question will be like this: how will you attract your readers to read your content despite of its long form?

As what is said above, you should avoid repetition, include images, and make it easy to read and navigate.

The article of Mitt Ray that you’ve shared is interesting.

Thanks for this post! I’ve indeed learned a lot. 🙂

Best,
Ann07

By the way, I found this post shared on Kingged.com

Sherryl Perry
Twitter:
June 10, 2014 at 12:22 pm

Hi Ann,
Thanks for dropping by and joining the conversation. I’m glad that you found my post interesting.

Some of the resources that I use are sites that consistently feature lengthy posts. It does take time but some of those articles provide such a wealth of information, that it’s definitely worth it.

One thing that I’ve found that readers seem to like is embedded videos. I blog about SEO a lot. So, I often embed a Google Webmasters video from Matt Cutts. What is interesting is that most of Matt’s videos are really short. So, watching them doesn’t usually equal spending a lot more time on my article. Embedding it means that no one needs to leave my site to view it either. 🙂

Nice to meet you here! I hope you find other posts that you can learn from here too.
Sherryl Perry recently posted..3 Things You May Not Know About Google and SEO – #FridayFindsMy Profile

aceclue
Twitter:
June 8, 2014 at 3:04 am

Hi Sherryl,

Quite an interesting post you shared, features well curated web contents. Lots can be said about the tips shared on this post.

As for the length of a post, it depends on the type and purpose of the article, tutorial in form of “how to” might take more characters to get the message passed to the readers. Sometimes, tips and experienced shared can be shorter. The most important thing is to avoid repetition as you rightly said. I make sure I use as less as words as my message could be rightly consumed by the readers.

I write title between 55 and 70. I take into consideration attraction while preference is given to search engine performance.
aceclue recently posted..Alexa Rank Widget: New Technical “How To”My Profile

Sherryl Perry
Twitter:
June 10, 2014 at 12:15 pm

Thanks for the feedback. I’m glad you found my article helpful.

I completely agree that there are a lot of factors that should be taken into consideration when we decide how long our posts should be. A lot of it depends on our individual writing style too. As you pointed out, we’re writing for our readers.

I try to keep the 55 character limit in mind but it doesn’t hurt us if it’s truncated in the SERPs as long as it still makes sense. (Besides the search engines still “see” it.)

BTW – I tweeted your post and left a comment for you.
Sherryl Perry recently posted..What Google Authorship Means for SEOMy Profile

Sandeep Rao June 7, 2014 at 8:01 am

Hey, I really support the way you have made the heading in an questionable manner, as it generate curiosity to know the way to do that particular task. And it make readers to read the whole post which results in lowering bounce rate.

Further, the linked article for idle length of various blogging content aspects is really helpful in making an optimized content delivery for various platforms. And the images for the statistics made it more clear to understand the performance of content at various lengths.

Thanks a lot for sharing the well informative resource. I would recommend the linked post for “optimal content length for various aspects” post for bloggers.
I found the post shared on Kingged.com.

Sherryl Perry
Twitter:
June 10, 2014 at 12:03 pm

Hi Sandeep,
Thanks for letting me know that my title piqued your curiosity. I admit that sometimes, I struggle with post titles.

As a side note, you probably noticed that I also ended my article with a few questions. Once I started that habit, I noticed a lot more comments on my posts. What I found was that a lot of readers really would like to join the conversation but sometimes it can be difficult to think of what to add. A couple of questions will usually get the conversation going.

I really appreciate your feedback and it’s great to know that people are finding my post through Kingged.com!
Sherryl Perry recently posted..How Can You Get Started With SEO? #FridayFindsMy Profile

metz
Twitter:
June 6, 2014 at 10:43 pm

Hi there Sherryl,

A good roundup about blogging tips. As we know, it takes a lot of constant work, writing and relationship building in order to create a successful blog.

I must say these blog posts and their short overviews can be used to get started off on the right foot and understand exactly what it takes to succeed as a blogger.

It also pushes me to think deeper about blogging.

I found this post shared on Kingged.com, the Internet marketing social bookmarking site, and I “kingged” it and left this comment.

Sherryl Perry
Twitter:
June 10, 2014 at 11:57 am

Hi Metz,
Thanks for letting me know that you found my blogging tips roundup helpful and for letting me know that you shared my post on Kingged. That site is still new to me but I’m going to definitely look into it.

Feedback like yours is helpful to me. I’m glad that you like the short overview. I think it’s a good way to introduce readers to other resources that can be of value to them.

I hope you have a great week! BTW – I normally reply to comments quicker than this but I’ve been on vacation and sometimes the best thing we can do for ourselves is take a few days off. 🙂
Sherryl Perry recently posted..Tips for Bloggers | Before You Press that Publish ButtonMy Profile

Olamosh
Twitter:
June 6, 2014 at 1:17 pm

Hi Sherryl,

Thanks for this wonderful article post. The article post is precise and straight forward. Funny enough, you preached about writing 1500+ article content words but yours is not up to that 🙂

I am used to writing 60 characters article post title and 70, but am glad to now hear that 55 is the best and most preferred by Search Engine. There is no doubt that writing long article post of over 1500+ is the most preferred by search engine but the truth here is that “IT IS NOT ALWAYS EASY TO WRITE 1500+”, even this article post is not upto 1500.

One need to follow the right procedure in order to write a compelling long post that that will contain no repetition of word and include more visuals like images, video or info-graphics.

A long post must be scan-able and thanks for talking about it.

To be sincere the “rules” for writing, the title templates and the blogging tools shared in this article post are all helpful and i will urge you to keep up the good writing.

Have a nice weekend
Olamosh recently posted..REVEALED!!! Teenage girls selling séx for MOBILE PHONES in Sierra LeoneMy Profile

Sherryl Perry
Twitter:
June 6, 2014 at 3:48 pm

Hi Olamosh,
I wouldn’t call it “preaching” so much as I would call it sharing insight from bloggers who have made recommendations based on research. Whether or not we choose to follow their recommendations is up to each of us. 🙂

I’m not committed to writing a specific length post. What I have done is lift the arbitrary limit that I had imposed on myself. 🙂 I haven’t had a chance yet to see what my analytics indicate. Are people staying on my site longer? Is the bounce rate the same? What’s going on socially? Has my percentage of repeat visitors increased?

I do know that since I’ve been writing between 1,000 and 1,500+ word articles (this post was 998), I’ve been getting more subscribers. I’ve also seen more of my posts being shared on Google+ and they’re being tweeted more too. The problem with forming decisions based on tweets alone is that I have also recently been experimenting with sticky posts on Triberr. (I know, test one thing at a time but I’m anxious to beef up my referral traffic and that seemed like one tactic that I needed to implement sooner rather than later.)

The posts that I have hit the 1,500 mark with are my #FridayFinds series. When I first started writing that series, I was still deliberately keeping them under 1,000 words because I wasn’t confident that my readers would want to read more. I find those easy to write because there is so much really good content available that I can share.

On the other hand, it takes a long time researching, writing and editing those posts. So, I haven’t been publishing as often as I used to and I haven’t had the time to comment on other blogs as much as I used to. So, the verdict is still out on whether I’m going to continue with this strategy or not.

Thanks for taking the time to share your insight with us. I appreciate it!
Sherryl Perry recently posted..How Can You Get Started With SEO? #FridayFindsMy Profile

Karnal Singh June 6, 2014 at 1:25 am

Hi Sherryl,
Having a attractive headline is very important because the headline is what the visitor see at first – i got attracted to your post seeing your headline only,so that is very important…I donot understand much about the optimum length of a post and the length also depends on the topic you are writing about…Making the post lengthier for the sake of it may back fire by bringing down it’s quality….

Sherryl Perry
Twitter:
June 6, 2014 at 2:44 pm

Hi Karnal,
Not everyone wants to read long posts and the topic is definitely a factor. As is our knowledge on the topic. Honestly, there are so many topics that have been blogged to “death” that no one wants to see them rehashed again – unless we can bring something new to the table (for example, share a personal experience).

In my reply to Sunday, I mentioned keeping our niche target client/customer in mind. When all is said and done, that’s who we’re writing for – not the search engines.

Thanks for taking the time to join the conversation.
Sherryl Perry recently posted..What Google Authorship Means for SEOMy Profile

Sunday
Twitter:
June 5, 2014 at 5:48 pm

Hi Sherry, your piece kind of get me thinking. Am I actually using the right approach in blogging? Perhaps, the length of the posts I share is not long enough!

Also, I should do more research on the ideal characters for the title length!

Well, in the midst of these queries, I have found solutions in this post. The facts and links shared are helpful.

In kingged.com, this article was shared for Internet marketers, and I have left the above comment after reading the post.

Sunday – kingged.com contributor

http://kingged.com/blogging-tips-missing/

Sherryl Perry
Twitter:
June 6, 2014 at 2:36 pm

Hi Sunday,
When it comes to blogging, there’s no “one-size fits all”. I believe it comes down to who our niche target client/customer is. Do they read long posts? The best thing to do is experiment with it. I still haven’t decided what length works best for my readers. I’m waiting to see what my analytics tell me. I do know that since I’ve started blogging in the 1,000 to 1,500 word range that more people are subscribing to my updates. So, that looks promising.

Thanks so much for sharing my article on Kingged. That site is new to me but I promise to get over there soon.
Sherryl Perry recently posted..Tips for Bloggers | Before You Press that Publish ButtonMy Profile

Mainak Halder
Twitter:
June 5, 2014 at 1:48 pm

Hi Sherryl,

Thank you for sharing with us the latest updates. I came to know of the length of the title limit being reduced through WordPress Yoast plugin. However, I was wondering if that is the case, then we are making our titles shorter for the posts we will be publishing in the future but what about the posts that are already published years and months before the update? How do they show up in the search engines? Does that affect SEO of the site in any way?

I know every time I ask you a lot of questions in the comment after reading your article but the article makes me think and question a lot to myself, which I share with you. 🙂 I hope you don’t mind that.

For the word length, I also tested myself that longer posts with more graphical representation does well than shorter posts, so I love writing a detailed post on a topic that covers most of the aspects of the topic.

Thank you once again. And have a nice day!
Mainak.
Mainak Halder recently posted..10 Free and Best Magazine Style Responsive WordPress themesMy Profile

Sherryl Perry
Twitter:
June 5, 2014 at 6:14 pm

Hi Mainak,
I first learned here (in the comments) that Yoast’s plugin prompts you to reduce the length of titles. That’s great. As I’ve mentioned before, if I were using a WP theme that didn’t have SEO built in, I would definitely install Yoast’s plugin.

I’m sure that some of our older titles are being truncated in the SERPs. It doesn’t affect SEO because the Google bots still read it. So, I don’t think it’s something that we should be concerned with. I certainly wouldn’t bother with it unless it was an article that I expected to have driven more traffic than it did. In that case, I might tweak the title and probably see if there were any other updates I could make at the same time. (For example, when I first started blogging, I didn’t use heading tags. If it were an “evergreen” post, like a “how-to” article, I would possibly update it but then again, if it has a lot of hits, I’d be risking making the title worse rather than improving it.)

For the most part, I prefer spending my time creating new content and engaging with readers and other bloggers online.

I’m glad that you ask questions! You make me think too. I often receive emails from readers telling me how much they enjoy the comment threads. 🙂 Questions, ideas and shared experiences are welcome here.

Including graphical representation is a good point. I need to do more of that myself. I’ve found that longer posts with a video embedded usually will do well.

Philip Verghese Ariel
Twitter:
June 5, 2014 at 2:01 am

Hi Sherryl,
I missed many of my friends’ notifications in my inbox thus missed this today I found it on Adrienne’s G+ page and I posted the following comment ther. Nothing more to say.
But can say it in one word. Excellent !
Hi +Adrienne Smith Thank you so much for the share, This is really great!
These days I am not getting many of my friends’ notifications, thus I missed+Sherryl Perry s note too. Keep it up Sherryl.
Keep informed
~ Phil

Sherryl Perry
Twitter:
June 5, 2014 at 12:28 pm

Hi Phil,
Thanks so much for letting me know that you found my post on Adrienne’s G+ page. (That’s the kind of info that you can’t unearth through Google Analytics.) I’m so glad that you found my post valuable.

I hope you’re having a great week.
Sherryl Perry recently posted..Google Website Signals SERPs and Title Tags #FridayFindsMy Profile

Philip Varghese Ariel
Twitter:
June 5, 2014 at 1:03 pm

Hi Sherryl,
I just submitted this educative piece at kingged.com Internet Marketing/Content Curation web page and kingged it and posted the below comment.
Thanks for sharing this valuable post.

“My Dear Fellow Bloggers!!!
Your Attention Please!!!
Are You Missing Something While Blogging?
Check out now!
And Fix it in the future blogging!
The Well Known Blogger Sherryl Perry is speaking now!
Lot of valuable information here for a blogger to make note of!
keep Reading this well written post.
Have A Wonderful Day. 🙂
Best
Phil
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Sherryl Perry
Twitter:
June 5, 2014 at 6:37 pm

Thanks Phil. I’ve never heard of Kingged.com before. I’ll have to check it out.

Ashley
Twitter:
June 2, 2014 at 9:49 am

hi Sherryl
I must admit that I have not really kept the new google font issue in mind when writing my posts. I still trust that Yoast is taking care of me, when it fact that is probably not the case. But I have been trying to go mostly shorter with my post titles (although not on my podcast as that is always long).
I have to go read Mitt’s post too, sounds worthwhile
ashley
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Sherryl Perry
Twitter:
June 2, 2014 at 8:08 pm

Hi Ashley,
That would be interesting if the Yoast plugin did prompt you whether your title would display properly. I’ve never installed that plugin on my blog because I had read that it conflicted with the Thesis theme (which has SEO built into it). My instinct is that (as you said) iit’s probably not the case.

I thought Mitt’s post was good. I hope you find it valuable. Thanks so much for dropping by.

Diana
Twitter:
June 3, 2014 at 11:14 am

Great post, Sherryl – first time I read your post and I have already read most of the links you give hahaja – I will be checking the rest though, thanks for the great finds, as usual!

Wanted to chime in about Yoast though – it does tell you if you go overboard with your title length. Not since day 1 of the change but it’s been a couple of weeks since red warning flashes every time I exceed the recommended length 🙂
Diana recently posted..Freelancer-Plagiarist of a New Kind and How to Protect Yourself from ThemMy Profile

Sherryl Perry
Twitter:
June 3, 2014 at 11:33 am

Hi Diana,
That’s great that you’ve already read most of the links that I included. That means we’re following some of the same bloggers! 🙂

Thanks for chiming in about Yoast. That’s really good to know. I still have changing my WP theme (and moving my site to another host) on my to-do list. If my next theme doesn’t have SEO built in, I’ll be installing Yoast’s plugin for sure.

I hope you have a great week!

Uday Ghulaxe June 2, 2014 at 9:17 am

Writting catchy headlines for the blog post are really important becuase before reading any post readers see the headlines of the post and not the entire post. If the hadlines are attractive then readers will go further and read the full post.
And absolutely content must have to be large and detail google announces that the blog which have detail post will be going to rank higher.
Nice write up mam

Sherryl Perry
Twitter:
June 2, 2014 at 9:48 am

Hi Uday,
You’re right about catchy headlines influencing people to read our posts. That’s also true about tweets. Most of us configure our social sharing plugn (or code) to tweet the title along with the URL. So, people are deciding whether or not to read our articles based on that.

It’s nice to meet you here. Thanks for taking the time to join the conversation.
Sherryl Perry recently posted..What Blogging Tips Are You Missing?My Profile

Catarina
Twitter:
June 1, 2014 at 9:00 am

Interesting post, Sherryl. Why do Google have to change their rules and algorithms all the time? What on earth made them decide 1500 words is a good idea for online articles? Sure if it’s an extremely interesting article written by a skilled journalist and posted on The New York Times site, it will be read. But on a blog?

When I write articles for Swedish newspapers’ online edition they want 300-500 words for the simple reason that the majority of people don’t read long articles online. So why does Google have to favour such long articles? Blog owners who can not write like journalists should keep their posts short because only one in a million is going to read a dull essay of 1500 words.
Catarina recently posted..Is the economy complex and evolving?My Profile

Sherryl Perry
Twitter:
June 1, 2014 at 8:54 pm

Hi Catarina,
Well, according to Google, they’re trying to return better search results to keep the people who are searching happy. I don’t think they’re the ones that are suggesting that 1500 words is desirable. I believe that number is what research is proving.

I think the fact that Swedish newspapers’ online editions want 300-500 words is a reflection on the their target reader. That’s what it comes down to. What do our readers want? The verdict is not in yet on whether I’ll continue writing posts like this. I need to take a good look at my analytics (as well as feedback and number of comments)

Great to see you here! I need to drop by your blog soon.

Mi Muba
Twitter:
May 31, 2014 at 1:31 pm

Hi Sherryl Perry
The way you explained how things are changing gradually in blogospher and how to write a post that must go viral is really awesome.
It may be surprising for many that now the days of counting are numbers are over. Now quality matters a lot. If you think you have communicated what you want to then you must finish your post if it simply contains 400 words the minimum limit of a post. Yes if you think you need to explain lot more to your readers you can cross the 1500 benchmark and may continue till you complete what you really want to tell your readers.
It means now we have to focus more on quality and just follow the rules of minimum numbers with regard to post. yes for writing the blog post title now we should try to cover it with 55 characters instead of 70 as you also pointed out in your post.
Once again thanks a lot for sharing such a wonderful post.
Mi Muba recently posted..Top 7 ideas to boost your blog consultancy businessMy Profile

Sherryl Perry
Twitter:
June 1, 2014 at 8:48 pm

Hi Mi,
Writing long posts is not for everyone and if someone is simply stuffing their content with keywords or repeating themselves to make their posts longer, they’re bound to run into trouble with Google at some point.

You’re absolutely right about quality being more important than quantity. Personally, I find it easy to write longer posts but you’ll never find a 4,000 word article here either. The thing is to write for our readers.

Thanks for the positive feedback and for taking the time to share your insight with us. It’s nice to meet you here.
Sherryl Perry recently posted..What Blogging Tips Are You Missing?My Profile

Adrienne
Twitter:
May 30, 2014 at 10:00 pm

Oh wow Sherryl, what a great post. Yep, the rules we followed last week have already changed. I hear that one a lot I’m afraid when it comes to doing things online. Surprise!

I think I go back and forth about the long posts. If it keeps my attention, if it’s entertaining and if it’s well presented I’ll read every word. Not all of them do though and I think a lot of people fill the post with unnecessary stuff. I write and I just keep writing and I don’t really think about how long it is. When I’ve said what I wanted then I’m done.

I heard about the headline length but then again I say what I want and I don’t worry about the length. I know that I should pay much more attention to what’s being told to us but then again we have those that don’t follow the rules at all and are doing fabulously so I think we just have to test the waters ourselves.

Still great information and I don’t want to turn my head to what’s being shared with us because as you said, things are changing all the time and we would be stupid to remain ignorant of them. That will only hurt us down the road.

Thanks Sherryl, great stuff girl and you have a good weekend.

~Adrienne
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Sherryl Perry
Twitter:
May 31, 2014 at 10:24 am

Hi Adrienne,

Changes keep us on our toes right?

I’m going back and forth on writing long posts. They are time consuming but on the other hand, I enjoy writing them. You wouldn’t believe how many times I’ve written a post and then ended up breaking it up simply because it was longer than the 800 to 900 (arbitrary) word limit that I had imposed on myself.

At the time, it seemed that was about the average acceptable length. I knew I tired of reading really long posts but really short posts often don’t bring enough value to me. (There are exceptions of course.)

I have a huge document with “edits” that I cut from some of my earlier posts. While these could be looked at as nuggets of info and fodder for new posts, it doesn’t work that way. Most of those earlier posts are on topics that have been blogged about to “ad-nauseam”. 🙂

The drawback to my writing these longer posts is that I find myself barely blogging once a week. The feedback that I’m getting though has been positive. My approach at this point will be to continue with this strategy until I’ve had a chance to dig deeper into how it’s affecting things like repeat visitors and bounce rates. (I’ve also thrown a new tactic into the mix from the “social” side though and that could skew my analysis.) Oh well, you don’t know what you’ll see from me next (or when).

I’m trying to keep the headline length down to 55 but I’m not stressing over it either. I’ve always tried to keep my keywords towards the beginning anyways. So, if the title does get truncated, that’s fine.

Thanks so much for the positive feedback. (I really value that coming from you.) You have a wonderful weekend too. Expect my online presence to be even more sporadic than usual over the next two weeks. My hubby is on vacation and I’m going to do my best to “follow suit”.
Sherryl Perry recently posted..What Blogging Tips Are You Missing?My Profile

Leora
Twitter:
May 30, 2014 at 6:59 am

“the “rules” that you followed last week have changed” – that one line (phrase?) in your post really stayed with me. Changes happen so often it can drive us all nuts. I’ve taken to looking up the rules when I’m concentrating on a certain topic. Then not worrying about getting it just right the rest of the time. When I used to do more photo posting, I found it silly to write really long posts just because the recommended number of words/characters was X. You really can drive yourself crazy.
Leora recently posted..Social Media Action in Central New JerseyMy Profile

Sherryl Perry
Twitter:
May 30, 2014 at 11:22 am

I agree with you completely Leora! I can drive myself nuts enough without worrying about following the “rules”. I like to look at rules more as guidelines myself 🙂 but something as simple as a recommendation to limit the number of characters to 55 is something I can easily incorporate. Of course, to make it easy to remember, I have that “suggestion” at the top of my blog post document (bold and highlighted in red) at least until it becomes a habit.

I wouldn’t start trying to write long posts if I weren’t comfortable with it. The thing is that I’ve always rambled on and written long posts. I just never published them that way. In the past, I would edit and sometimes break entire thoughts off for either a part 2 or a completely new post.

Do you remember my guest post on commenting that Adrienne published a while back? That started off in an article that I published here and I cut it out and saved it. because I thought it would be too long a read. (I’m glad that I did!)

It’s great seeing you here. I promise to be by your blog soon! Have a nice weekend.
Sherryl Perry recently posted..What Blogging Tips Are You Missing?My Profile

Ravi Chahar
Twitter:
May 30, 2014 at 3:40 am

Hi Sherryl,

Such a remarkable post for bloggers.
Every newbie need to know about this blogging tips. As you have mentioned regarding the title of any blog post-most of bloggers do this mistake. I used to notice that title happen to be more than 65 characters.

It’s necessary to know about SEO. Everytime and then there occur a debate on the length of the post. Many bloggers prefer short posts but many prefer long. It matter as about what we are writing?
Finally main thing is to know about SEO first. Only after that a blogger can boost up the blog.

Thanks for sharing these tips with us.
Have a great weekend. 🙂

~Ravi
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Sherryl Perry
Twitter:
May 30, 2014 at 11:08 am

Hi Ravi,

It’s always good to hear from other bloggers who value SEO. Ignoring it can get us into trouble with Google and no one wants to risk that. I always look at my SEO efforts as driving free organic traffic and who can’t use more free traffic?

I used to shoot for 70 character titles but I’m definitely trying to keep them to 55 characters now. At least we know that using up to 70 doesn’t hurt us. If I go over now, I try to imagine what the title would look like if it did get truncated.

Thanks for joining the conversation. You have a great weekend too!

Steven Wilson
Twitter:
May 29, 2014 at 9:37 pm

Hi Sherryl,

Fabulous post! I would like to mention the 7 minute 1600 word blog post length! Honestly, unless it’s a tutorial, It’s hard for me to hit those kind of numbers regularly. I personally am the type of person that says what needs to be said and I’m done 🙂

I generally hit around 800 words and many times find myself expressing myself as much as I can. i learned not to force it. If I force hitting a certain number of words I find myself deleting them when editing due to repeating points I already mentioned just maybe in a different way.

Thanks for this Sheryl! Take care…
Steven Wilson recently posted..Are You Using The Plugin That Rules All Other Plugins?My Profile

Sherryl Perry
Twitter:
May 30, 2014 at 10:31 am

Hi Steven,
It’s great to see you here! Thanks for dropping by.

The 800-word article length seems to be popular. That’s about the number that I used to shoot for before I started experimenting with longer articles. For me though, writing 1,200 words is not difficult at all. In the past, I’ve deliberately edited articles down or split them into parts because I used to believe that most people liked to read shorter articles.

If it’s not natural to write long posts, I agree with you that you shouldn’t force it. Part of “finding our voice” is writing in our style. If we all wrote the same way. it would get boring fast!

Happy Friday and I hope you have a wonderful weekend.
Sherryl Perry recently posted..How Safe Are Your Backlinks? #FridayFindsMy Profile

Reginald
Twitter:
May 29, 2014 at 1:31 pm

Hey Sherryl,

Thanks for sharing! Excellent write indeed.

I uses Yoast for basic SEO title checking and I usually practice using different titles (title on meta is different than on the title page itself.

The reason is simple. I want good titles to show up on search engines while when readers click on the article to read, the first title would be a real catchy one.

Just my addon!
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Sherryl Perry
Twitter:
May 30, 2014 at 10:23 am

Hi Reginald,

One more recommendation for Yoast’s plugin! If I weren’t using Thesis with SEO built in, I would definitely have that plugin installed.

Thanks for weighing in on this Reginald. I’m sure other readers will appreciate your input too.

donna merrill
Twitter:
May 28, 2014 at 5:41 pm

Hi Sherryl,

Fantastic post! I usually write longer posts from 800 words on. It all depends on what I’m writing about. I never liked a short post. I only write a 300 word post if I have a video in it.

Not such a stickler for word count, but after reading this, I find that I do need to be more aware.

As for titles? Still working on them! I usually find that numbers such as “10 awesome ways to ….” work well. It’s all experimentation.

My page rank did fall when I changed my blog theme a few months back. But, no worries for me.

Thanks for all this information plus the links you have shared.

-Donna
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Sherryl Perry
Twitter:
May 30, 2014 at 10:20 am

Hi Donna,
Thanks so much for the kind words! I’m glad you liked my post. An 800 word count is about what I used to try to limit my posts to. I would often edit my posts down because I thought that people wouldn’t read longer posts. (I still believe it will be a turn-off for any people.)

I’m going to continue experimenting with these longer posts and see what happens. My hope is that Google will find the content valuable and reward me by sending me more traffic. – That should offset losing readers because my articles are longer now. 🙂

Thanks for letting us know that titles with numbers work well for you. I’ve found that to be true too but I don’t seem to write many of those. My “How To . . .” articles are usually received well too.

Sorry to hear changing your blog theme caused your page rank to fall. I’m glad to hear it’s not causing you any angst though. 🙂 Have a great Friday and I hope you have a nice weekend.

Bhanu Chander
Twitter:
May 28, 2014 at 2:45 am

Way to go Adam !

Really a fantastic article – I can say a mix of articles. I have to appreciate you for taking time to write such an awesome post. I especially liked your 16 ways, G+ guide and blog tactics. It’s really hard to see posts that contain more words, many bloggers usually restrict their writing to say 1000 words or something like that. I’m glad to see that you didn’t cared for any such thing, instead you concentrated only on the content ! That’s really great way of delivering and interestingly your article made me read everything (from top to bottom) without skipping some (Usually I do that if I don’t find the article interesting !).

Thanks for sharing your views. I need to apply some of these ideas 🙂
Bhanu Chander recently posted..LinkedIn SMM – A complete guide for everyoneMy Profile

Sherryl Perry
Twitter:
May 28, 2014 at 1:22 pm

Hi Bhanu,
Thanks for the feedback. (You must be referring to Karol K.’s guest post on Adam Connell’s blog.)

Bhanu Chander
Twitter:
May 28, 2014 at 2:44 am

Hi Sherryl,

I never cared for something like ‘stick to 1000 words’ or ‘restrict to 55 characters’. I always mind meaning-fullness to the title. The title – that best suits and supports the content. And coming to content, I just keep on writing whatever strikes my mind, without any concern on word count. That’s why my blog posts are usually between 5 to 8 minute read type. Of course I do write posts that can be read just in 2 min. It depends on the topic !

Anyway thanks for the article. It made me think !
Bhanu Chander recently posted..LinkedIn SMM – A complete guide for everyoneMy Profile

Sherryl Perry
Twitter:
May 28, 2014 at 12:20 pm

Thanks for weighing in on this Bhanu. I’m sure that there are many bloggers who feel the same way that you do. I’m glad that my post made you think!
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Jeannette Paladino
Twitter:
May 27, 2014 at 11:20 pm

Sherryl — as you point all the research points to lengthy blogs attract more links and traffic. Sorry, but I’m not up for 1,500 word posts. I could do it, but it would be too time consuming. I actually have other things to do, like client work! For sure, a 300-word post isn’t going to cut it with Google anymore. I have started shortening my titles. But sometimes I’ll still be in the 60+ range if the post needs it. I’ve got a file of those headline templates but rarely use them. Most of them just seem too hokey to me.
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Sherryl Perry
Twitter:
May 28, 2014 at 12:18 pm

It is time consuming Jeannette. Recently, I’ve been writing posts that hover around the 1,000 word mark. (This article is 998 words and I recently published one that was 1,498 words.)

I actually enjoy delving into topics and most of the time I’ve been editing my content to keep my posts shorter anyways. This is a new strategy for me. The problem is (as you’ve probably noticed), I’ve also skipped publishing weekly at least twice this year. So, I honestly don’t know if I’ll keep writing lengthy posts or if I’ll go back to the 600 to 800 range. (I’ve been to busy to take a look at my Analytics lately and it may be too early to come to any conclusions yet.)

The worst thing that would happen if our titles are too long is that they won’t display properly in the SERPs. So, there’s no harm done. I kind of like the templates a little to just get me thinking. By the time I’ve finished writing my posts, I’m usually not that creative on writing a title. So, I welcome anything that will give me a gentle nudge.

Thanks for weighing in on this. I’ll be by your site soon!

Ryan Biddulph
Twitter:
May 27, 2014 at 11:00 pm

Find the right mix between following and breaking rules 😉 I break too many, maybe, but I also have broken the mold because of that. Sometimes I think, am I doing it right? Then I realize that next month, I’ll be living in an ocean front home in Fiji for 4 months, greatly due to my blogging efforts, and many, many broken rules 🙂 Can’t argue with that lol!
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Sherryl Perry
Twitter:
May 28, 2014 at 12:07 pm

There’s a mold? 🙂 You’re doing wonderful Ryan. Living in an ocean front home in Fiji for 4 months sounds fabulous to me! (I’ll be by soon to read your social media tip post.)

Ray May 27, 2014 at 9:40 pm

You know people may link to longer articles in the 1600+ range, but I have a very difficult time reading one of them entirely. It has to be something I am extremely interested in, or need very bad.

I do see articles in the 150-300 word count that still rank well. I guess that may depend on a particular sites authority or popularity to some extent.

I think I am more likely to read something that is 700 words or less, but that is just me. And, if it happens to be a blog post with tons of comments I generally don’t have time to read all of them on top of the article. I will usually skim read it at that point.
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Sherryl Perry
Twitter:
May 28, 2014 at 12:05 pm

Ray,
I used to write shorter posts but lately, I’ve been hovering around the 1,000 word mark. My post about “Google Website Signals SERPs and Title Tags” was 2 words short of 1,500! That’s a lot to me. I haven’t done any analysis on how these posts are ranking and what affect it’s having on my bounce rate or repeat visitors yet (but I will).

I would imagine that my bounce rate may be creeping up because people may be tiring of what I’m saying. 🙂

“Google Hates Technical Tutorial Writers”? That’s a great title Ray! I’ll be by soon to read it.

Susan Cooper
Twitter:
May 27, 2014 at 6:51 pm

Great post. All the articles and information were really interesting and helpful. I particularly like the “6 Quick Tips for Writing Titles” and all the blog post title templates. Lots of good suggestions to get you thinking.
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Sherryl Perry
Twitter:
May 28, 2014 at 11:58 am

Hi Susan,
I’m glad that you found some interesting and helpful info! I found the post about writing titles interesting too. I find writing titles challenging. I think that by the time I’m done writing my post, I’m too tired to think about a title. 🙂

David FB
Twitter:
May 27, 2014 at 12:37 pm

Personally, I find it interesting to monitor developments. But my approach has never been to meet what are essentially arbitrary standards. I periodically write 3-4,000 word articles, typically splitting them into roughly 1,000 word parts. This in spite of early advice to keep posts to 2-300 words. (remember that?)

I use Titles derived from the content. I put part numbers in the Title so it’s very clear, even in links. I sometimes use playful titles. I have found “10 things” and famous names in titles draw more readers, but only skimmers. The real readers who browse more and subscribe are attracted to the value of the content.

Your length should be driven by the content. Otherwise, you’re cutting examples or you’re padding and wasting the readers time.

After blogging for about 6 years, I’ve found that whats really popular is entirely unpredictable. It’s dependent on things like timing, if others also covered it, if others link to it, and random public popularity things. Mainly things outside you control.

While not a marketing approach, I just supply good content and the readers come. KISS principle. (laughs)

Sherryl Perry
Twitter:
May 28, 2014 at 11:56 am

David,
I used to feel the same way about long articles and I would break them into parts too. I have never written a 3-4,000 word article before though. Recently, I’ve been hovering around the 1,000 word limit and I wrote one post that was two words short of 1500. On the other hand, I’m only posting once a week now and there have been a couple of weeks that I haven’t posted at all. So, I’m not certain that this is a strategy that I should continue with.

I continue to struggle with titles. From my experience, the “How To . . .” posts that I’ve written seem to be the most popular.

I think following the KISS principle is a great idea. As always, thanks for taking the time to visit and weigh in on this topic.

Dermot Gilley May 27, 2014 at 11:36 am

The “Avoid Repetition” is obvious, one should think. However, since the publishers on the net tend to be the readers on the net they tend to regurgitate what they’ve read and the next then does the same. That way no original content can be created (except for the true pioneers and that’s the reason they have more followers (who then copy them …), but since Google etc. now smell duplicate content a mile away, no wonder the copy-cats can’t rank. It’s time to paraphrase Wittgenstein: of what you cannot speak ORIGINALLY you should shut up about.
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Sherryl Perry
Twitter:
May 28, 2014 at 11:39 am

Hi Dermot,
Avoiding repetition should be obvious but (as you pointed out) some bloggers regurgitate what’s already been said. So often, I am looking for good content to share and I’ll see post after post saying basically the same thing. We need to be original to differentiate ourselves.

A few months ago, I started focusing on SEO. (Actually, it’s been over a year since I was whacked by Google and started studying it.) I am not a pioneer and I certainly do not have the resources that some SEO companies have. What I can do, is to try to communicate their findings in simpler digestible posts and link to the original sources. (So far, I’m receiving positive feedback. So, while the content/topic is not original, I believe that I do bring something new to the table.)

I think an easy way for bloggers to bring originality is to share personal experiences with their readers . . . either that or we could “shut up”. 🙂

Thanks for kicking off the conversation here!
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