Which Is Better: Long Blog Posts or Short?

As much as I would like to think that my longer, carefully plotted essays are the most popular items I write, such is not the case.

I get higher readership, more comments, and more reactions with shorter posts.

What may not be obvious is this: it's often harder to write the shorter posts. This is especially true if you're trying to write conceptual, idea-based material (a non-issue if you're simply posting links, for example).

So, shorter posts it is.

Ray Edwards is a world-renowned copywriter and communications strategist, writing for some of the most powerful voices in leadership and business including New York Times bestselling authors Jack Canfield and Mark Victor Hansen (Chicken Soup for the Soul) and Tony Robbins. Ray is a sought-after speaker and author, hosts a popular weekly podcast, and blogs at RayEdwards.com.

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  • I know exactly what you mean Ray! It’s very difficult for me to write a post that’s less than 800+ words with most being around 1000. We have to remember that our audience is attention challenged, and yet starved for meaningful content!

    • Yep, most people don’t understand when I tell them posts of 1000+ words are actually easier for me to write…

  • Ray,
    That little dachshund is the cutest representation for a “short blog post” that I’ve seen! Quite creative visual imagery!

    I agree, shorter blog posts are much harder to write than long blog posts. The same holds true for short emails.

    -Lisa

    • When I was looking for the picture to represent “short” and I found that one – I knew it was THE one! Thanks Lisa!

  • Sherrykochmail

    What about the conversions, Doc?

    • Now that’s a different story – probably requiring a LONG post! LOL

  • Susanchartock

    Hello Ray,

    Say more but write less is a concept worth taking note on.. thanks. Have a great Thanksgiving.

  • i don’t think it matters if the posts are short or long, what it matters is what they are about and how you write them.

    • Maybe. There’s a certain amount of subjectivity involved there. But on the whole I’m persuaded that shorter is usually (not always) better. For blog posts – writing for other purposes may yield a different answer.

  • Nice!

    (do short comments count as well? LOL)

  • This has been an ongoing internal debate I’ve been having. Thus far, my experience has been the longer my posts are, the greater the need for special formatting (i.e. shorter paragraphs, section headers in bold print, etc…) . As a rule, I try to never go beyond 1000 words. Being concise and to the point is key.

    • Good point about formatting as it is VITAL when you are publishing longer content.

  • I think short posts are great if you’re trying to put out content every day. Seth Godin’s blog is a good example of how doing short posts can work really well.

    However I do follow a few blogs that put out longer posts, only they publish less frequently (maybe 1 or 2 times a week). There a balance between overloading people with information and not giving them enough.

  • Imprimisxo

    Agreed.

  • Corri

    I am inspired, I will try to remove the verbosity and overuse of language from my future posts, rather focusing on short, minimal, to the point responses – furthermore my posts will be … oh exceeded word count!

    Good article Ray

  • Ines

    Good point! I type and talk more about my topic because I want to bring a point out there, and get others to respond. I generally type less when my brief messages are nonthreatening – it’s warranted, have merit, and reference to itself.

    Either way, a blog post, whether short or long, becomes boring, insignificant when a blogger doesn’t take the time to respond to the comments, or when the post is 2 – 3 months old and no one bothers to react on the comment section.

    In your case, I salute you for a short post and for continuing the dialog on a relational topic like this.

  • Ines

    Good point! I type and talk more about my topic because I want to bring a point out there, and get others to respond. I generally type less when my brief messages are nonthreatening – it’s warranted, have merit, and reference to itself.

    Either way, a blog post, whether short or long, becomes boring, insignificant when a blogger doesn’t take the time to respond to the comments, or when the post is 2 – 3 months old and no one bothers to react on the comment section.

    In your case, I salute you for a short post and for continuing the dialog on a relational topic like this.