Study Finds That Shorter Content Earns More Backlinks

There is a new emphasis in education that less is more. The idea behind this is that if teachers focus more on a smaller amount of content, students will learn the material better. It is rooted in some positive results that support this idea, and now this same principle is found to have the same merits on the Internet.

No, this is not addressing readers having a better knowledge of the subject because articles are shorter. Instead, the idea teaches that shorter articles in length will attract a greater number of backlinks to that article. These links help to greatly improve the SEO performance of the article, which will only help the site to be more successful.


A Comprehensive Evaluation

The study examined posts from experienced content writers, experts, and other levels of writing experience and found that articles that are roughly 700 words in length draw a greater number of articles that are linked to that original. This study examined a number of different types of articles, including Evergreen articles and timely content, plus articles from a wide array of genres, including health, travel, sports, food and drink, finance, fitness, and sex and relationships.

The study also examined several different types of evergreen content articles. This included how-to articles, articles that included videos, newsletters, and infographics.

To make the study more relevant, only articles that had at least 25 backlinks were considered. Since these are the type of articles that marketers would be focused upon, it only made sense to focus the study using these articles.


The Proof Is in the Pudding

After conducting a thorough evaluation, it was concluded that content articles that were well over a thousand words were far less likely to have many backlinks. Those under a thousand words had greater success, and those around 700 words were more likely to have a large number of these links than any of the others.

The study concluded that other factors are obviously important as well. This includes providing relevant content while also tapping into the emotions of the reader. For example, in those articles focused on love and romance, helping readers to have more amorous or erotic thoughts only helped to improve the overall performance of the article, drawing a greater number of backlinks.

The survey also found that how-to articles were some of the most successful in terms of garnering backlinks. Because other sites may be drawing information from those articles to help support instructions or ideas, the original article found itself to be very much like an “authority.”


What Does This Mean?

This is great information, but to the average person or small business looking to improve their rankings in the search engines, it may be difficult to comprehend how exactly this survey can help. The reality is that it may be the difference between success and failure.

The number one goal of a marketing firm is to help customers to get more eyes on the site. Countless hours are spent researching data in an attempt to ascertain how to best improve the overall performance of the website. The problem is that there are literally trillions of bytes of information to be evaluated, meaning that a marketing firm must know how to dig through all of that clutter to find the key pieces of information that help to make a site successful. This survey is a game changer.

The reason why the shorter articles are so successful should really not be a surprise to anyone. A 2019 report found that 24% of adults had not read a book in the past year. With the level of literacy declining and the amount of free time that people have available also seeing a decline, more are finding that they simply do not have time to read. This is true of long articles as well.

When people come to a website where an article is 1500 words, they are more likely to turn away from that article. They want information quickly in this microwave society and having an extensive explanation about something does not meet that goal. Unless it is a how-to article that requires detailed explanation or is an in-depth evaluation of an event, users are not going to read extensive content.


Article Writers Are Readers, Too

This same principle applies to those who are writing articles. If a person is writing a post about the latest trends in fashion or is explaining what can be done with old blankets you have sitting in the attic, they don’t have time to read four or five articles that are 1200 words or more. They are trying to get up content that is relevant and do it in a timely manner. Articles that are lengthy are simply not going to be read by them either.

What that means is that you need to get to the point. By providing an article with quality information, relevant to the reader, you are more likely to find that your article will have numerous links to it, especially if the content is such that people will constantly return to it. An article on five ways to strengthen your lower back will always be relevant as long as the content within the article was informative and worked. These kinds of articles are going to have backlinks that can occur 10, maybe even 20 years after they were written.


Now for the Marketing

With this in mind, it is important to focus on writing quality articles that will get these backlinks. The ultimate objective of your site is to get readers. Unless this is your personal journal, the likelihood is that you are needing large numbers of people to read the articles to help produce revenue for you.

Even those who are providing a service will find that there are benefits to providing these kinds of content articles. For example, if you are a chiropractor, your success depends upon how many customers you have. If you are writing articles that are relevant to people suffering from different forms of ailments or pain, you are likely to find that you will draw a greater customer base from your content.

Soon, you are no longer Dr. Joe Smith, local chiropractor. Instead, you become an expert on chiropractic care and many others are quoting your information.

That success can best be achieved by keeping your articles as direct and focused as possible. If you are writing an article on how to make sensational holiday cookies and you realize you can add a great description about different types of cookie cutters, do not include that in the article. Instead, write another article and link the one about holiday cookies to the one about cookie cutters.

Your goal is to be successful. You can do this by being succinct and focused. It can turn your website into a real authority if you follow this suggestion.