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Short vs Long Articles For Marketing

Jul 8, 2008
There has been a persistent squabble over whether one should use short or long articles online. In article marketing, the squabble continues with strong support for each position. Short articles are generally considered to between 400 words to 500 words and in some cases as little as 250 words. Long articles are more than 750 words.

Proponents of short articles claim that attention spans online are quite short and an internet surfer will not pay much attention to long articles. They point to the well known fact of skimming or page scanning as proof. Surfers generally land on a page and tend to scan the page by scrolling; running their eyes on the page from top to bottom without really reading.

The long articles proponents on the other hand point to the inability to communicate much more than introductory information in such short articles. And except for FYI (For Your Information), tips and opinion articles, short articles are shallow and not considered of high value.

So should you use long or short articles for your article marketing? Considering article marketing targets webmasters to pick up your articles for their own websites, the author is inclined more towards long articles; and for good reasons. As a webmaster, to pick any article for reprint it would require the article to be insightful and particularly unique in perspective. Such content often will require the accompaniment of the more general information to create the foundation for the more insightful information. Just this setting up of the content could as well use 250 words.

In addition it is rare that a webmaster would pick FYI or a tip articles. Reasons being, they have no where to publish them. Unless they particularly have a frequent tips ezine or a tips page, the webmaster would prefer several tips in one page which would make along article. Unlike off-line publishing, websites usually do not have spaces for filler content. Fillers are short articles that are used to fill up space in newspapers and magazines.

FYI articles on the other hand are generally regurgitated content and often the webmaster will not consider them of great value unless of course it news. As for well presented opinions, they tend to be long due to reasons detailed above concerning setting up the content.

But again, this column is never more than 450 words. And as much as it more of introductory and FYI/Tips kind of column, it is insightful for those new to internet business (newbies). All in all you articles should be as long as they need to be but always of great value.
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