There’s a prevailing opinion that internet users have the attention span of a goldfish. For this reason, short-form has become the preferred content strategy in organic search efforts. Short-form content appeals to businesses the most, as it is a much lower investment compared to its longer counterpart.
But it can’t be denied that while the stakes are higher in long-form content, it’s a much better investment in the long run. From an SEO perspective, long-form content ranks and converts well, proving that people still like to read long pages on the internet.
You may have heard this a few times, but it’s true when they say that in SEO, content is king. If you find yourself struggling to improve your SERP rank, then you may want to reassess your content strategy and consider long-form content.
What Is Long-Form Content?
Technically, long-form content refers to an editorial, blog post, or on-page content that goes over 1,500 to 7000 words. The typical length of an SEO article is 300-500, which is inserted with at least one to two keywords. In long-form articles, keywords are inserted sparingly so as not to compromise the quality of the content.
Content writers would use words and phrases that correlate with the SEO keywords, a technique called Latent Semantic Indexing (LSI), to enhance search engine visibility without overstuffing the content with the SEO keywords.
Long-Form Content Benefits SEO
Searchengineland.com reports that long-form content benefits SEO in two simple ways: one, it garners more backlinks, and two, Google likes in-depth articles on broad topics. Several reports have shown that longer articles, those that go above 2000 words, tend to have more backlinks pointing to them.
A simple explanation behind this is that longer articles have more value and enough credibility to rank in SERP. Since long-form offers more keyword variation, it increases the odds of ranking for relevant terms.
Even Google’s recent Panda algorithm update agreed when it introduced new search results to help users find in-depth articles on broad topics. Search engines put great emphasis on the user experience, in fact, it’s their priority to provide value to people searching the Interweb. So it must be true that people still read long articles. People are still curious, after all.
Results and Rewards
Moz claims that long-form content converts better than short-form. This is because longer articles tend to generate higher engagement, conveying the impression that they have something more important to say. Long, in-depth articles help increase brand awareness and establish your credibility and authority among your visitors.
Even small businesses investing in local SEO should leverage long-form in their content strategies because it offers a quicker, more powerful way of building an audience. Not only does it increase the time your visitors spend on your site, it also offers tons of opportunities to get in touch with them. Spending more time and effort for your visitors is the best way to build trust.
The real value of long-form content is longevity. We’re not just talking about how long the content ranks in search engine results pages (SERP); we’re talking about credibility, authority, and solid brand awareness. While the stakes are low in short-term content, so are the relative rewards. Long-form content is a bigger investment, but it can do wonders to your inbound marketing strategy.
Long-form content is definitely winning the web, and SEO experts agree that it’s worth more effort and time. That doesn’t mean, however, that you should drop short-form completely. It still has its place in your content strategy. But bear in mind that in SEO, length is not a metric for greatness. It lies in the quality and relevance of your content from the point of view of your visitors.