Write longer blog posts: do it for the children (or SEO)
The quality level of your blog’s content determines its marketability and sustainability as a long-term traffic generator; but what is it that increases quality level?
It’s somewhat of an undefined idea, but we can make some assumptions. We know that “quality is king”, but what makes a quality post? Let’s list off a few things off the top of our heads:
- Highly Informative
- Offers Up a Solution
Odds are that you’ve heard these words used to describe quality content and they’re all true. However, I’d like to add one more to the pile: Thorough.
Deeper Blog Posts are More Meaningful
The amount of detailed information and specifics offered up by many blog posts are often slim at best. While this is a bit of a shame, it presents a real opportunity for you to set your articles apart from the rest of the pack by adding a higher amount of detail.
The more thorough and “meaty” your post is, the higher the quality and value of it will be. In fact, without detailed and thorough information, it’s hard for your posts to hold any real value at all.
It can be entertaining, engaging and even informative, but if you don’t go the extra mile with the level of detail that you offer in the form of information, you post in the end won’t be that different than a thousand other posts out there.
Deeper Blog Posts are More Informative
So what I’d like to do is talk a little bit about some practical ways that we can write thorough and informative (yet skim-able) articles. While at the core, it requires some research and a little extra time, there are a few additional things you can do to flesh out your articles and explain your ideas more thoroughly.
Use Bullet Points — Not only does Google like bullets, but they’re a great way to expound on an idea. For example, let’s say you’re writing a blog post about losing weight, and you make the following statement:
“Often times your lifestyle can have as much to do with your weight as your diet does. In fact, the non-diet weight gain factors can be harder to deal with.”
You know have an opportunity to list and possibly discuss the non-diet weight gain factors:
- Idle Work Situation
- Evening Routine
- Lack of Sleep
- Lack of Exercise
It’s simple, but if you had left that sentence without the list, you would’ve passed up a great opportunity to benefit your post in several ways:
- Making your post more readable.
- Making your post more valuable in the eyes of Google.
- Making your post more informative and thorough.
- Increasing the re-readability of your post.
See? I did it again. Thus we have a simple concept, with excellent results.
Deeper Blog Posts Show Your Subject Matter Expertise
When you come up with an idea, develop it out as far as you can take it. The best way to do this is to start with a basic overarching principle, and continue to ask and answer questions until you’ve pushed the idea out to its most practical conclusions. For example:
- Make a Statement: “Foods high in saturated fat are bad for you.”
- Explain: “Saturated fat can cause you to gain weight and increase your health risks.”
- Ask a Corresponding Question: “What foods contain the most saturated fat?”
- Answer that Question: “Fast food, processed food, fatty meats etc.”
- Offer Applicable Solutions: “Instead you could eat, fruits, vegetables, lean meats, etc.”
In short, you’re simply developing your idea and walking it out to its most logical conclusion. People might know that saturated fat is bad for them, but the footwork of putting skin on that idea isn’t something people like to do.
They’d much rather refer to a blog post that lays it all out for them. If you can put the skin on an idea, instead of just presenting that idea as a fact, your posts will be much more thorough and valuable.
Deeper Blog Posts are (or Should Be) Engaging
When you get to the point where you just want to finish a post and get it published, you’re probably in the hurry-up offense, which isn’t a good thing when you’re writing a blog post.
If you feel like you just want to write something to get it over with, stop writing and come back to the post later. Writing an article should be an interesting and engaging experience for you, the writer, which will almost always translate into the same for your readers.
If you’re having trouble being interested and enthusiastic in the topic at hand, you’ll be hard pressed to include detail and thorough explanations in your posts, simply because you don’t have the creative energy to do so.
Make sure that you’re motivated enough to write thoroughly and avoid just filling in space with paragraphs that are rushed. You’ll end up making broad generalizations that don’t really contribute to the thesis of your post, or the reader’s experience.
Keep in mind, a thorough post doesn’t necessarily have to be a long post. While they’ll often coincide, they aren’t one and the same. Even if your posts are only 400-500 words, be sure that the information you’re offering is well thought out and walked out as much far as possible.
Remember, as a blogger, people will read your material because of your ability to put texture and specifics onto a broad idea. If you simply rehash generalizations, you posts will have no real value.
Best of luck, and thanks for reading.
What do you think?
I’d love to hear your thoughts on this article. Please leave a comment below or feel free to contact me with your thoughts.