Good marketing content should make things happen. That could be clicking to visit a website, adding to cart, picking up the phone or more. Many elements go into how a content writing service actually does that and the length of any piece of content is one such element.
You may need multiple pieces of content on more or less the same topic but exactly what is to be written and how long each item is will vary greatly. Some things like meta descriptions or Twitter posts will have forced limits but, for most things, you are left on your own to determine the lengths you want.
The following are some guidelines to help you get started. You can use these when you write your own content or when you work with a professional article writing service.
Website content’s job is to move people along in the buying cycle. Every page should give just enough information to answer a specific question and convince the reader to click to the next step or to call you. In general, these pages should include between 200 and 300 words for the main body of content. This, of course, does not include sidebar or navigation content.
Some exceptions to this guideline include category or product description pages on eCommerce sites. These ideal word counts would be between 100 and 200 words for category descriptions and between 50 and 150 words for individual product descriptions.
White papers showcase your thought leadership in a given area and establish you as the expert. A good white paper should be at least 1,000 words to provide the level of detail truly needed.
You can think of these documents in a way as condensed white papers. They should always provide very useful and specific information but in fewer words. Most SEO articles should be between 400 and 600 words. This means the message and content of articles will be more focused than in white papers in order to get the point across succinctly.
Let’s face it—some blogs exist almost solely for the purpose of boosting SEO. Other blogs are really intended to be read, boosting credibility and follower loyalty. Because of this, there is no one-size-fits-all word count for blog posts. In general, those blog posts designed to fuel the SEO engine can be as short as 250 words but should be created more frequently.
Blogs designed to be more thought-provoking—even controversy generating—can be as long as articles or even white papers. The longer the blog post, the more captivating it should be. An integral part of this is the voice used to keep readers interested.
The Match is What It’s All About
At the end of the day, the most grammatically perfect sentence is not at all what writing is about. Matching the message, audience, vehicle and length is what will deliver the results that you need. This combination of the art and science of writing is what a content writing service thrives on.
Matt Secrist is the VP of Business Development and co-founder of BKA Content, an industry-leading SEO content creation services company. Matt is passionate about writing quality content, watching NBA basketball, going backpacking and taking mid-day naps.