Content is an essential part of your SEO strategy. We often hear that to have a good SEO, the size of your content is important. So I wanted to dust off the subject and get the experts to react …
Does size matter?
Several studies have shown that there is a correlation between the size of the content and its position in search engines. Brian Dean’s study (Backlinko) even shows that the results on the first page contain an average of 1,890 words (I would rather have measured the median, but whatever).
Be careful not to confuse correlation and causation
“A correlation is a statistical link, without asking which variable acts on the other. A causality is a link which affirms that one variable acts on another. »AC-Grenoble.fr
In other words, just because your content is 2,000 words does not mean that you will automatically be on page 1 of Google.
The proof with this Backlinko graph: the results in position 2 and 3 have more words than position 1.
The number of words is therefore not directly responsible for the position obtained on Google, although it is difficult to deny the correlation which is obvious.
Another interesting point: some studies show that the longer an article, the more backlinks and shares on social networks.
If you trust these studies, then yes, size matters. But is it enough to engage users?
What makes users engage with an article?
Taking into account only the number of words to hope to be on the first page is nonsense, because it is just part of the puzzle. User engagement is most important. However, it can be difficult to quantify the quality of the content, the value and the emotion it conveys.
To measure user engagement with a web page, Google and Bing search engines measure Dwell time and CTR (click through rate) of your research extract.
What is dwell time?
Dwell time allows search engines to get an idea of the quality of your content by measuring the difference between the time a user clicks on a search result and returns to the results page.
If a user quickly returns to search results, it indicates that they were not satisfied with the content they were served.
To find out if your visitors like your content, you can use metrics available in Google Analytics such as bounce rate, average time spent on the page, and number of pages visited.
Why is CTR an important ranking factor?
CTR lets Google know if your title and description on your page are clickable and therefore match what users are looking for. So it’s important to optimize your title tags by including your keyword and using click-to-click tricks.
How to create quality content?
We’ve all come across content created for search engines, soulless, poorly written content with no added value for readers. Some communications agencies produce hundreds for their clients. Unfortunately, this kind of content no longer really works in 2018.
Keep it in mind: the quality of content is more important than its size. When creating quality content, which deals in depth with a specific subject, it is easy to quickly reach over 1,500 words.
To increase your chances of being listed on the first page of Google, your content must:
- Deals with a specific subject / keyword: a page must deal with a specific subject;
- Deepen as much as possible the chosen subject: The more you provide answers to questions that users have about a specific subject, the better your content will be referenced. Your goal is to provide Internet users with more elements than your organic competitors. (So yes, size matters a bit no matter what you say: p);
- Be well organized: use header tags for easy understanding and reading;
- Has a title type at the eye : articles like “X things to do for …” outperform;
- Never favor quantity over quality – LES IS MORE : when you write, forget the 1000 words, your content must add value and meet user expectations. If the subject you are talking about requires 500, 1000, or even 20,000 words, adapt, do not write unnecessary information;
- Is easily accessible: your content must be mobile-friendly and load quickly;
- Pleasant to watch: nobody likes ugly pages;
- Be promoted: share it on social media, use AdWords, then ask influencers and bloggers to share your article;
- Integrate images and videos if possible.
SEO expert Neil Patel takes up some of these points in his last video that I invite you to watch.
PS: also make sure to optimize all the other elements that impact the referencing of your website. I have gathered for you the main elements to check in my Onpage SEO checklist 2018.