Long? Short? What’s the Ideal Length for a Blog Post?

I’ve been asked this many times before, but unfortunately I couldn’t give any concrete answer to those who asked.  Many “experts” (not me, of course) will tell you that short blog posts are the best because internet users have short attention span.  They’ll tell you to cram your main points in as little words as possible.  Yet other “experts” (also not me) will tell you “not too long but not too short”.  Posts that are too short run the risk of becoming irrelevant because they lack substance, while posts that are too long have a high probability of intimidating potential readers.  Search the web and different experts will tell you different answers.  So confusing, right?

anime - lost and confused

You scratch your head.  You read countless websites and books about blogging, trying to discover what the exact number of words is for the ideal length of a blog post.

I entered the search term “ideal length of blog post” and the first result is this:

The ideal length of a blog post is 7 minutes, 1,600 words. . . -Kevan Lee, “The Ideal Length of Everything Online, Backed by Research” (Buffer Social)

Well, I’m not familiar with the author but he must be an expert at these things.  So if you have any questions about blogging, I think it’s better to ask him instead of me.  I mean, I’m not an expert.  I’m just a super awesome and incredibly cool but still humble otaku blogger so take any of my advice at your own risk.  Consider yourself warned.

Gather Loyal Readers and You’ll Find that Length Doesn’t Really Matter

I personally don’t have a specific word count limit that I follow whenever I write my posts.  I’ll use the necessary words I need, no matter how many they are, to convey whatever I want to say.  When I just created Fujinsei, however, most of my posts were very short. But as I gathered more loyal readers along the way, I found that I don’t really need to worry about the length of my posts anymore.  My awesome readers will read my posts, short and long alike, because they are written by me.  Well, actually I’m just threatening them to read my posts and forcing them to comment or else.  Ahahaha~ Just kidding.  Or maybe not~ 😉

EVIL~

Here’s a fun fact:  most of my popular and most commented posts in this blog are the long ones.  I like to believe that my super-duper awesome readers love reading my posts, no matter how short or long they run, but who knows?   Maybe they’re just being nice and forcing themselves to endure the torture of my seemingly endless babble in my posts.  Whatever the case may be, my readers are the best and they have my heartfelt gratitude for putting up with my usually long nonsense.

Content is More Important than Length

Focus more on effectively conveying what you want to say, rather than worrying about whether your post is too short or too long.  If you can do that in a paragraph, that’s fine.  But if you need to use a considerably large number of words to properly convey your message, go ahead.  Although I’ll have to warn you against writing posts that are novel-length.  Those are too long, even for something like me who usually likes to read and write long posts.

What Type of Blogger Are You?

thinking anime girl

Two of my favourite blogs are at the opposite ends of the spectrum when it comes to the length of their posts.  Spoon & Tamago mostly have short posts.  Since it’s an art and design blog, it focuses more on photos than words.  Rather than long-winded opinions, the posts contain brief but informative background information instead.  On the other hand, Tofugu features some really long posts, and when I say long, I mean LOOOOOOONG posts.  A lot of its posts are packed with intensive research and analytical opinions by the authors.  If you’re an otaku like me, check these two blogs if you haven’t yet.  Seriously, they’re AWESOME!

As a reader, I enjoy the short posts of Spoon & Tamago and the long ones of Tofugu alike.  I don’t see any reason why I should prefer one’s style over the other.  Both may feature Japanese culture but their niche are very different.  They successfully found the length that works most effectively for the type of their blogs.

So instead of religiously writing 1600-word posts every time, identify what kind of blogger you are first.  Even the aniblogosphere is littered with different kinds of bloggers.  Most are reviewers who may or may not follow a strict guideline for the proper way of writing anime/manga reviews which may include a specific word count limit.  Some are fan artists who use their blogs to showcase their masterpieces.  Obviously, they don’t use a lot of words, if they need any at all.  Some are fan fiction writers, so the length of their posts depend on the story or chapter that they’re writing.  Some are anime news bloggers, so their posts are usually short, using just enough words to succinctly relay news.  And some are devil-may-care-I’ll-write-what-I-want-to-write-no-matter-how-outrageous kind of bloggers like me, who are more entertainers than reputable bloggers.  Here’s my dramatic pose!  Hehehehe~ 😉

little witch academia broom performance - gif

No Right or Wrong Length of Post

As long as you have people reading your posts, don’t worry too much about the length.  They’re either reading your posts because they need specific information or they genuinely like you as a blogger because you’re interesting.  In either case, they won’t care much about the length of your posts as long as they’re getting what they came for.

If you’re just starting out, however, and don’t really have regular readers yet, I think it’s smart to write short posts and focus on building your archives first.  It can be as short as 1 paragraph or maybe 2.  Nothing is absolute when it comes to blogging.  It’s up to you.  When you gather enough loyal readers, you can then start writing longer posts and experiment on how long you can go before they start losing interest.

I know this sounds vague, and you have every right to scorn me for this (although I can’t guarantee that I won’t fight back), but this is what I believe based on my personal experience.  If you want a more specific word count, by all means, you can follow Kevan Lee’s advice and write 1600-word posts.

Also please be advised that this post is geared towards personal bloggers like me who blog for self-expression rather than business-aimed bloggers who blog exclusively to earn money.  If you’re the latter, you’re better off following Kevan Lee’s 1600-word ideal which he says is “backed by research” than following a shady blogger like me you’re not entirely sure is sane.  Well, it’s your choice.

Be Free, Be Creative, and Don’t be Afraid to Take a Different Path

cat dancing anime -gif

Find your own blogging style, even if that blogging style defies all the current blogging conventions.  And that includes the length of your blog posts.  Find what works best for you as a blogger.  Unless you’re being paid by a big-ass company to blog following a specific guideline, you’re free to blog however you want to blog.  As long as you’re not doing anything illegal or harming the innocent, go ahead and let your creativity run free.

I found what works for me and it’s usually fairly long posts filled with nonsense I pass off as entertainment.  If you just put in the effort, I’m sure you’ll find what works for you.  After all, if someone like me who has the gall to write blogging tips when I’m not even an expert can do it, of course you can do it, too.

How about you?  Do you think there’s an ideal length of posts for all bloggers?  How long do you write your posts?  Which do you think works best—short posts or long ones?


Loved what you read?  Share this post with your friends.  Also feel free to connect and follow Arria on Twitter and this site on Google+.  Also like Fujinsei’s Facebook page.  Thanks!

Support Fujinsei by using the following affiliate links whenever you shop online with these websites:

CDJapan.co.jp

Play-Asia.com

Amazon.com

Amazon.ca

Fujinsei is also a WordAds member, so if you would be so kind as to turn off your ad blocker when using this site, that would be greatly appreciated.

Read Disclosure Policy for more information about how this site uses affiliate links and ads.  Thank you very much for your support!

Advertisements

61 thoughts on “Long? Short? What’s the Ideal Length for a Blog Post?”

  1. I dunno, seeing as I’m a total rookie blogger I just try and make sure I get out what I want to say and hang the word count. My first post was stupidly long for what it was, and my Nuzlocke’s differ depending on how much I play each week. I just start typing and hope I don’t ramble too much.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I personally don’t think there’s a one-size-fits-all length for blog posts. And indeed, at the beginning it’s a lot of trial and error when it comes to writing posts that’ll be your trademark style. I think that as long as you’re enjoying what you’re writing, that’s what’s important. Because if you don’t enjoy yourself first and foremost, you can’t expect that your readers will enjoy what you wrote, right? Anyway, pleased to meet you. I hope that you’re enjoying your time here in our blogging community. Keep it up. Cheers!

      Liked by 1 person

      1. Always write for your own interest first and if it’s good other people will like it I say! It feels good to be part of a creative community again, and I’m glad one of the first blogs I found is so helpful to newcomers! I look forward to my time here senpai!

        Liked by 1 person

      2. Ehehehe~ Don’t compliment me too much or my head’ll get too big and none of my hats won’t fit me anymore. 😉
        But thank you. Call me Arria. What do you like to be called? ThunderStryke?

        Like

  2. To be honest, I don’t mind long or short. When I do posts, I try to give my readers everything that is needed but also something to fast and simple. When I do reviews, I try my best to not leave out any information. It just depends either way.

    Liked by 1 person

      1. Well, as long as they don’t give up like so many new blogger do, they’ll eventually get used to it and start enjoying blogging more rather than worry about the length of their posts.

        Liked by 1 person

  3. I enjoy shorter posts to be honest, but then a blogger like yourself comes along with a lengthy post, I read it, then fall in love with the writer’s style 😀
    This is why I admire the Otaku Judge. You probably know him, but he writes brief, impactful reviews that take literally a minute to read yet leave me with the drive to often check the show out. He rarely strays from his formula, and that consistency is a huge reason why I love coming back. I wish my voice was easier to vent into a shorter post, but alas, that’s why I keep trying.
    Great topic! I’ve been waiting for someone local to sorta break the ice, ya know?

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Aaaaw. Thanks. Hehehe.
      Indeed, he does. Otaku Judge is one of the first bloggers that I connected in this community.

      Ahahaha. And so I’ve broken the ice, eh? Yay! Well, there are tons of blogging tips floating around, but none specifically for anibloggers like ourselves, so why not talk about it, right? Anyway, thanks for dropping by, Takuto! Always delighted to talk with you. Cheers!

      Liked by 1 person

  4. in my case, I already have an idea of what my viewers like, having started with poems, then, spiritual and travel essays, and lately I also touched human values and politics…facebook viewers complain if the blog is long which is understandable for the facebook is intended just for photos, but I posted blogs there upon the request of my friends who do not have time or patience to open other sites…

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I think that for writers like you, long posts are more appropriate than short ones. Opinionated kasi ang mga posts mo. Mas gusto kong basahin lahat ng mga obserbasyon mo, mga opinyon mo, at mga prediksyon mo sa isang mahabang post kaysa sa pinilit mo lang na isiksik sa isang maikling post. Hayaan mo na kung may mag-complain na mahaba sa facebook. Style mo ‘yan eh, ‘yong mga medyo mahahabang posts. Kung ayaw nila, eh di ‘wag. Marami namang mas may gusto sa mga mahahaba mong posts tulad ko. Tsaka hindi naman sobrang haba posts mo ah. Oo, mahaba pero hindi sobrang haba. Anyway, maraming salamat sa pag-comment. 🙂

      Like

  5. For me, it depends on what I’m writing about. I suppose, generally, my posts are between 300 and 1000 words? Sometimes, I post drawings and doodles, and I don’t generally need more than 300 words for that. Usually, I think, it’s even lesser. For the other posts, where I write about culture or whatever else I feel like writing about, it’s 1000 words, at max.

    But I’m still a newbie to blogging, so I really can’t tell whether or not the length of my posts is good. I also post once a week, because of school. Might have chosen an odd day for updates, too. Sigh

    But then again, I mostly write for pleasure and for improving my writing and English skills, in general.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Indeed. It depends greatly on what you’re writing about. I think it’s up to whether you’re comfortable with writing long or short posts. Others tend to write short posts, while others like long ones. Some are a mixture of both.

      Aw. That’s fine. I always like to emphasize to enjoy blogging. If you’re enjoying yourself, you’ll stay motivated, no matter how busy you are in real life. If you’re burnt out, it’s okay to take a break. Anyway, I hope that you keep on blogging. And thanks very much for dropping by and sharing your opinion with me in this matter. Cheers!

      Liked by 1 person

  6. I’m new to the whole blog thing to be honest when it comes to actually blogging, (doesn’t make sense I know but I guess you could say this is the first time I’ve used a blog as a blog and not just a platform to advertise my other work) when it comes to length I just try and write something that is equally entertaining and informative where its one paragraph or several.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Ooooooh. Welcome! I hope that you enjoy blogging here. I think that’s an important part of blogging: enjoying yourself. And I agree that if you’re enjoying yourself blogging, it’ll show on your writing. I’d rather read an extremely enjoyable long post than a dull short one. Thanks for dropping by. Keep on blogging. Cheers!

      Liked by 1 person

  7. I agree that content and personal style are way more important than actual length. If I’m enjoying what I’m reading, I’ll stick with a long post. If a post is short, I’ll appreciate it as long as it has actual content. Either is good. 🙂

    Liked by 2 people

  8. Haha I am always amazed how people know that 1600 words takes 7 minutes to read. Seriously what if it is not in your native language. And even if it is and you are a slow reader.

    As I write I found that for me the 1000 words is just perfect give or take a hundred Don’t pay much attention to it as it just so hapens. As it feels comfortable to me as well when I read it. Other times I just keep a 500 words. Since it takes me an hour to write those as well. adn time is of the essence. LOL

    Do what feels comfortable that is for sure.
    Being a rattle brain I can do long comments about nothing.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. 😄
      Great point. Not everyone reads at the same speed, that’s for sure. Well, the article did say that it’s “backed by research”, so there you go. 😉

      I agree. Each of us has different blogging/writing styles. Some are more comfortable with short posts, some with long ones. I think as long as we’re effectively conveying what we want to say, then that’s what matters. Thanks for dropping by. Cheers!

      Like

  9. I worry about the length of my posts, especially since I usually don’t include many pictures. I usually try to target around 1,000-1,200 words, but the biggest variable in my reviews is how much I have to say about a series’ translation. Some of those sections almost reach 1,000 words by itself.

    Liked by 2 people

      1. Yay, Pres! Honya is right. You’ve got good content, so don’t stress too much about the length. I was just talking with another blogger and she said that if she becomes bored with what’s she’s writing, then that’s a good point to stop. Anyway, keep on blogging. Cheers!

        Liked by 1 person

  10. Great article! I have to say that the length of a post really doesn’t matter as long as you’ve said what you needed and wanted to say. Personally, I follow that notion and when I start to get bored writing, that’s usually when I wrap it up too haha.

    Liked by 1 person

  11. To me, I just write my posts at various lengths. If there is a lot cooking in my mind that needs to be said, I write long posts, proof em as best I can then let people read if they want. Guess it depends on my mood.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. That’s one factor, too—mood. As a moody person, I can totally understand. Well, as long as you’re able to say what you want to say, it’s fine; no matter how long your posts may be. Thanks for dropping by. Cheers!

      Liked by 1 person

      1. Not saying I have a temper or anything, but my mood does play a role in my post’s length. But it’s odd, I’ve been on WP for a number of years and some of my posts don’t spark conversations, others get liked. Haven’t found that sweat spot yet.

        Like

      2. Didn’t give up when every martial arts dojo turned me away due to my disability, or when my brothers wife told me I shouldn’t be a writer. I hold a Black belt, writing a vampire novel & a few erotic manga.

        Liked by 1 person

  12. I don’t check my word count for my posts on my blog but sometimes I’ll be scrolling through a post and I’ll think, “this is kind of long…” I still keep it at whatever length it is though because I just can’t find it in me to shorten it (then I’ll feel like I’m not being thorough enough xD)

    I tend to read anything that I find interesting. For example, Shiroyuni’s posts are SUPER LONG but I never find them boring to read through, in fact, I look forward to them. I think what turns me off about a post is spelling/grammar, a strong/pushy opinion with nothing to back it up, or aesthetics. If there’s too many words and not enough pictures or blocky paragraphs or wonky formatting…that’s when I check out @_@

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Oh my gosh. 100% agreed! Shiroyuni’s posts are awesome. Plus they’re very well-written which is a huge plus. I admire that in a blogger because everyone can blog but very few can write well. And she’s one of those that can really write well.

      Well, as for you, Crim, I agree that you don’t have to worry about word count. You’re Crim and we find you interesting enough because you’re you. I think we’ll still find you interesting and entertaining even if you just write one word. 😉

      As for the spelling/grammar errors and opinionated posts without substance, I agree with you wholeheartedly. This kind of posts are not reader-friendly. -___-
      Anyway, thanks for dropping by. Cheers!

      Liked by 2 people

      1. Oh goshhhh girls I just saw this. I have always known how much long posts deter many people from reading, but I always end up writing them long anyway because I want to blog for myself foremost, and I just have that much to say xD There’s no fun if I cut them short & take the enjoyment out of the writing process, I feel. I really really appreciate the support ^^

        Having said that, I generally support long posts as long as the content justifies it as well. xD I know how hard it is to keep one’s attention for these posts hahaha :p

        Liked by 1 person

      2. Hear, hear! Indeed, my thoughts exactly! I blog for the most part to enjoy myself, and just like what you said, it’s no fun if you tailor your posts to suit others’ tastes and neglect your own writing style. And I also agree with reading long posts. I don’t shy away from them, but it doesn’t mean that I read all long posts. I only read those that have substance and are fun to read. Thanks, Shiro. Keep on blogging. Cheers!

        Liked by 1 person

  13. I usually try to keep my posts on the short side, but I sometimes feel that I need more room for my super amazing jokes so I end up not giving a fuck. ^^
    But I do have the attention span of a 5 y/o with ADHD so, unless it’s really really interesting I just give up on long post halfway.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. 😄
      Each of us have different blogging/writing styles. You found what works for you and that’s usually the shorter posts. I think it’s better to write posts that shows your personality in it than posts that you’re trying too hard reach a word count limit. Because it shows when you’re trying to hard in a post, and they usually turn me off. Anyway, thanks for dropping by and sharing your opinion about this matter. Keep on blogging. Cheers!

      Liked by 1 person

What do you think?

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s