image of tausif akram By: Amby
19 Mar 2014

How Important is Word Count on the Web?

It’s pretty typical for internet marketers and website owners to expect to pay based on the word count of a page, but did you know that this way of thinking could be hurting you more than it is helping?

Of course, writers have been paid by the word for a very long time. But it dates back to a time long before the internet. Writers have also been paid by the inch, and other factors based on spacing in print publications.

Writing for the web is different. A blog article does not have to fit around other pieces of content, so length and word count are almost irrelevant.

Then, there’s this common misconception that a page must be at least XXX words to be worth anything to search engines. I dare you to go find a credible source that claims word count has anything to do with the value or rank of a page. (When you give up, here is a credible source that verifies word count is irrelevant: https://productforums.google.com/forum/#!topic/webmaster-de/OiOydgbpRWw)

How It’s Hurting You

When you buy web content based on word count, you are making 3 mistakes:

  • You’re paying a writer who isn’t good enough at their job to inform you of your mistake
  • You’re paying a writer who is probably going to use a lot of fluff to achieve the desired word count quota
  • You are just as guilty as the unskilled writer, because you are focusing more on irrelevant details and not enough on the most important—what topics do your best customers / core audience want to read about?

Yes, quality really is everything. Now a longer article (750 words) might have more sustainable value than a shorter (250 word) article simply because there is more substance. Or, a 150 word article could say what needs to be said—clearly and concisely—which is always better than adding 350 filler words that take away all value.

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