Every content marketer hopes that the content posted on their website is liked by their readers and helps the website increase traffic. However, this can be achieved only if your site has appropriate length and depth of content which depends on both, long-form and short form content. While many believe that long form content is the key to increased traffic to a website, it is not the case always. Many times, readers crave posts that are detailed and informative. But many readers look for articles that are short, crisp, and quickly readable owing to their busy schedules. While you may follow different types of content writing on your website, using both short- and long-term content can prove most effective if used correctly.
What is long form content?
Long form content can be defined as a piece of writing which falls between 1,000 to 7,500 words. A long form of writing is usually used by content writers for topics that are complicated or require deep understanding. The long form of writing not just provides readers with valuable insights on a specific topic but also keeps them hooked on your site for a long time. Thus, you optimize search engines and improve lead generations with higher chances of showing your page on the first pages of SERPs.
Benefits of long form content
One of the reasons website owners employ a long form of content strategy is to enhance their SEO and keep readers for a longer time in their web pages. Since search engines calculate readers, and time spent on your page which acts as an indicator of your site value, long form content proves very beneficial. Moreover, Google ranks those pages high where audiences tend to spend more time than the others. Another benefit can be backlinks or the number of websites you link with the page. Overall, a comprehensive piece of writing with multiple backlinks will make other websites link back to yours.
Long form articles are highly shared by the readers
Content creators and bloggers look for factors that increase their article’s shareability. Past surveys reveal that long content usually outperforms short form content in this domain. Since long form content is based on in-depth knowledge and intensive research data, viewers share it most often.
Creating white papers
A white paper is a piece of content that consists of deep research about a topic and the issues surrounding it. The white paper intends to inform readers about the topic and help them solve issues. White papers are also used to demonstrate research work conducted by the authors which they write in long form content style. This long piece of writing is used by educators, research field experts or students to analyze or review the research made while many writers may create them to influence the decision-making process of prospective buyers by offering research-based analysis.
What is short form content?
Short form content is a post having less than 1000 words. Short form writing may include social media posts, memes, infographics, tweets, landing pages and other diversified web content. In other words, anything posted on a webpage that is not long form content is short form content provided the word count is less than 1000.
In today’s era, most informal posts are written using a short-form content style owing to the busy schedule of the readers. Many of us like to have a quick read for an eCommerce site, a product description or daily news updates on social media. In fact, many corporate blogs post used to be short form in the early days. Businesses and marketers did not spend much time providing free information even to their customers. In many cases, this is still true, particularly in B2B brands.
One feature of short form content is its reader friendliness. When a lot of words spring up on our mobile screens or on social media posts, we tend to ignore them. Therefore, marketers strive for crisp pages that highlight a specific area they want their customers to focus on. Since mobile phone users comprise more than half of the internet traffic, we cannot ignore their interest and consider a short form of writing to increase their engagement.
Benefits of short form content
A short form of content can be produced in a short period
Unlike the long form of content which requires intense research and a long time to produce, a short form of content can be made quickly. Whether you want to throw light upon a particular topic or want to produce a quick review regarding a product or a service, a short form of content can be made relatively quickly.
People love short content for quick consumption
Although the long form of content proves useful while making research on a particular topic, short articles are loved by people who search for various day-to-day things on the internet. For example, when buying a cosmetic or a food item, you may not prefer reading a detailed long script but rather search for short content which highlights important points that you can quickly go through.
A short form of content is preferred by mobile phone users
More than five billion people worldwide use smartphones equipped with the internet. The figure cannot be overlooked so do their requirements. While there may be people who search for a detailed description of any specific topic, the number is very less compared to those who do not prefer reading long pages. By including a short form of content on your website, you can get mobile user traffic well.
Some unique content formats support a short form of content only
To make the site or webpage look creative, content writers use different content styles and structures which might not be supported by the long form of content at all times. For instance, memes and social media posts. These forums are designed to share opinions without long-winded writings. And while long form content may use graphs and images, short form content can be more creative.
Long form versus short form content, which is better?
Both long and short form content are equally important and have advantages that cannot be ignored by content creators. Thus, bloggers and marketers use both formats to capitalize on their writing and serve readers from all angles. There are many possible ways through which you can use them effectively, however, we have compiled a list that might prove useful for you.
- Use long form content which can be used as a cornerstone for your website or blog such as a white paper or an eBook. Use interesting quotes or statistical data alongside customer testimonials you receive on social media sites. You can even include post snippets at regular intervals once your long form content starts building interest.
- Short form content can be used alongside videos or images highlighting the post details. You can get them from YouTube or Facebook pages. Just share the link with a quick caption before you share your page on social media.
- After you have created a long form post, create a series of short form content or blog posts that complements your long blog posts or a white paper. Do not forget to link your short posts with the long ones so that readers can navigate easily from one post to the next. This will help you build traffic and lower your bounce rate.