Businesses and marketers are always searching for “advice” to improve what they post online, but when it comes to questions about how long their content should be, it’s hard to find specific answers.

Social media platforms and their audiences vary, and for this reason, so should your content length! There may not be any set rules for online content length, but there are certainly general guidelines to follow.

Content marketing wheelBlog Posts and Articles

Blog posts often vary the most when it comes to the length of their content. According to research based on blog publishing platform Medium, the ideal blog post takes on average 7 minutes to read (approximately 1,575 words). Posts longer than this tend to struggle keeping readers’ attention.

It’s also important to consider the length of the individual paragraphs within your post. Arnie Kuenn, guest author for Marketing Land, says to achieve maximum scannability, embrace the line break and keep paragraph length to three to four lines each.

Twitter

Despite Twitter’s limit of 140 characters, Track Social found that tweets ranging from 72 – 100 characters are retweeted the most. Additionally, according to Buddy Media, tweets 100 characters or less had a 17 percent higher engagement rate. Clearly, sometimes a quick blurb can be more powerful than a detailed explanation.

Sticking to 100 characters or less also allows users to add their own comments into the retweets, while longer tweets have to be manually edited. This editing process often ends up cutting the original tweets short, which can potentially change your message.

Facebook

Generally speaking, images have the upper hand – they receive 120 percent more engagement than text posts! However, when it comes to text posts alone, BlitzLocal’s study of 120 million Facebook impressions found that the ideal length is between 100 – 119 characters, which is comparable to Twitter.

Longer posts have lower engagement rates, so keeping your updates concise is key. It also can’t hurt to include images with your text posts considering just how successful they can be alone.

Summary

Ultimately, your content length is not defined by these guidelines. While they provide a great basis for what you post online, every situation is different.

The length of your content is not nearly as important as the information your post has to offer. Whether it takes 50 words or 500, it’s all about meeting the needs of your audience – after all, your content is written for them!