How Long Should Online Articles Be?

There has always been quite a bit of dialogue, discourse, debate, and discussion on the proper length for an online article. It turns out that nearly everyone has an opinion on this; article authors, and Internet article marketers alike. Well, over the years, I’ve written a good number of articles, and yes, I too have an opinion on this. Let me give you my perspective, because someone just the other day asked me about this.

You see, a new online article writer, and I am guessing a soon to be online article marketer wanted my take on this topic, and asked me; what is the best length of an online article, “is less more?” he inquired?

Okay so, it is actually my opinion that articles shouldn’t be much more than about 300-500 words because the average person on the Internet will not read more than that, most people scan online anyway, they aren’t really reading, they are too busy clicking around. If you’re writing highly technical articles, then they should be under 1000 words not less than 400-500. Lately, I’ve been keeping all my articles just above 400 words, with the occasional article of 800 to 1000 words.

There was a famous author who once said something to the effect that your articles should be as concise as possible but not any less or more – if that makes sense. There are many people who believe that it’s just not feasible for someone to write an article of less than 200 words and say anything that is truly meaningful to the reader. That’s absolutely false, although it is true that the majority of article authors won’t be able too, it takes time to hone your skills in that regard, that level of talent takes time and practice you see.

Indeed, I can tell you that I can give information in less than 200 words that will be valuable to each and every person who reads it, in the niche or category of that particular hypothetical article. In fact if you are good in your industry you could probably say something in one paragraph that will be valuable to the reader, and help increase their profits, revenues, or reduce their costs in business for instance.

Before retirement I was in the Franchising Industry, and learned quite a few things the hard way, I could easily give someone a paragraph which would help them make or save 10’s of thousands of dollars in their business model. See that point, and let’s say the paragraph was 150 words, and had a two-sentence lead-in, with a two sentence summary conclusion. Right around 200-words you see?

How long does it really take to write an article to explain a concept, or give an idea?

I want you think about this, next time you wish to lambaste the folks on twitter. There are many famous quotes that we say in our daily language, they’re nothing more than sentences, but they convey a thought, a concept, an ideal, or just an idea, and we deem such wisdom to be notable, credible, relevant, and valuable.

Now then, there are many online article directory sites which have rules of how many words they want you to put in the article. If you’re going to do online article marketing or online article authoring, you obviously have to follow the rules. Just as if you were submitting an article to a trade Journal and they wanted it to be so many words, you have to follow the guidelines.

Perhaps that’s why people like blogs, they can put a blog post in and links or any number words they choose to. They can write one sentence, they can write “I am” and call that a sentence, and that would be the end of their blog post. The most important thing that an article author needs to remember is they must give valuable important information to the reader, something they can use, something they need, and decent advice.

“I write articles to make people think, and it doesn’t take much, think about it!”

See my point? That one sentence, makes you think, and conveys a thought. Now I could go on and on about that one sentence for 400-500 words, but you already got the point, in fact, you are still thinking about it as I finish this much longer article. How many times did I make you think in this 850-plus word article, a bunch I hope.

So, most of all, what is paramount to your article length is that whatever they put in the title of the article, it is important that you make good on that title, and give the information that is now expected from the reader based on the title that they clicked on to get to that article. Anything less is going to piss off the reader, and if you want to find a potential customer, you’ve already lost them. Say what you need to say, convey what you need to convey, and the article will be the proper length at the end of the day.

Please consider all this and think on it.

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