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"Do We Really Need 250 Words?": SEO Questions Not to Ask

Posted by Synchronicity on Dec 7, 2017 9:22:00 AM

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Did you know that every page on your website needs to have at least 250 words? The homepage, the Products page, the blog posts…and 250? It’s just a starting point.

Yes, really.

 

How many words is 250?

First off, 250 words is probably more than you think. What you’ve read so far? Only about 50 words. We know, it’s nuts. Your words shouldn’t be all smooshed together in one long paragraph, either. Web users expect their content broken out. Short, sweet, bulleted…easier to read is better.

Readers look at websites using an F-shaped pattern. They skim the headline, of course, then skip to the middle to see if anything catches their eye. From there, they probably jump to the bottom to see if there’s a recap, the online version of Cliff’s Notes. Build your content with this in mind.

 

So, why the arbitrary 250-word rule?

Understand that Google likes webpages with a lot of content. Why? Because through countless calculations they’ve figured out that in general, the more content there is on a single webpage, the more well-researched and informative it is. Search engines want to serve people content that answers their questions.

When Google’s Panda update took place in 2011, they started cracking down on what was known as “thin content.” Thin content is generally considered anything less than 200 words long.

One-paragraph blog posts? Pages with 20 images but no text whatsoever? Those were suddenly subject to a ranking penalty.

Why? Because search engines don’t want SEO professionals gaming the system! They want rich, informative content for their readers, not keyword-stuffed SPAM that doesn’t offer anything of value. Today, Google is really, really good at figuring out which content is worth ranking, and which is a waste of everyone’s time.

 

Better content also creates a better user experience, FYI.

More content (to a certain point) creates a better user experience for your audience. And you want your audience to have a good user experience! Even though your snazzy images and four-word Venn diagram makes a lot of sense to you, your users probably need a little more content to create context around what you’re trying to say.

Helping your customers navigate their way to what they need – whether that’s a longform description of a new product or a gallery featuring photos of all your latest jobs – takes words. Use your content wisely, use it judiciously, and use it to your advantage.

 

Does the thought of having to write many, many pages of website content make you break out in a cold sweat?

We gotcha. Call Sync today to talk about a content plan for your business.

Tags: SEO