Blogging + Content Marketing

How to Make Blog Posts Longer Without Adding Fluff (+ Candid Thoughts About the March Algorithm Change)

April 16, 2024



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So you’re trying to hit a specific word count on WordPress or on your blog. But how do you do it without adding in a ton of fluff? Today, we’re going to talk about how to make blog posts longer without filling them with garbage. Make sure to listen to the end to hear my thoughts on (or shall I say rant on) “SEO being dead” and the new Google algorithm. Let’s get into it.

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Word Count Importance

Alright, let’s break down why hitting a word length is important. You’ve probably heard that longer blog posts used to be the golden ticket for better Google rankings. There has long been this understanding that longer blog posts tended to rank better on Google because Google deemed them as more valuable because there’s more content.

However, I think ChatGPT changed the game since it can just keep spitting out more and more content. Now, Google knows word count is not necessarily the end all be all when it comes to how valuable a blog post is (and Google has many kinds of ranking factors). However, it is still true (at least in my experience) that a 200 word blog post is not going to rank for most things. We still need to create some sort of substantial content even if we are not aiming for 4,000 words anymore. That being said, let’s get into my tips!

how to make blog posts longer

1. Add a Frequently Asked Questions Section at The End

For example, how are you going to beef up your blog content, if your content is 300 words, without going to every section and pretending there’s more to say about it when there isn’t. Add a FAQs section at the end! You can ask ChatGPT for inspiration. Sometimes, I will copy and paste a blog post I wrote into ChatGPT and prompt it with “based on this content, what questions do you think people will have about it?” Then I’ll use those questions as inspiration to add to the end of a blog post to get a longer word count on a shorter topic.

2. Introduce The Topic Better

Take a step back to break down the topic before getting into the content. For example, if were turning this into a blog, I could create a section to explain “what is SEO” and “why is the length of a blog post important”. Kind of like I already did 😂

Let me add a caveat to this, we still do need to get to the point in our blog posts. Yes, introducing the topic better is a great way to add length and value to your blog posts, but that doesn’t mean we bury the lead. We want to make it very obvious where they can skim to get the answer they are looking for.

3. Explain Why It’s Important

Lastly, Include reasons why your topic is important. If your blog post is about “Instagram hashtags” for example, talk about why they are important (social media is a free marketing tool, we want to reach new audiences, we want to get in front of other people’s audiences, etc). Consider busting any myths people have about the topic too! That can be a great (and helpful way) to make blog posts longer.

Bonus Tip: Add More Points

My last bonus tip for to make blog posts longer? Add more points. Let me explain what I mean. For example, if I am writing for a sustainable fashion brand, it is going to be hard for me to hit a substantial word count. If the topic is “3 sustainable fashion brands to follow in 2024”, it will be a lot easier to get a higher word count if I wrote “15 sustainable fashion brands to follow in 2024” instead. Adding more points can be great.

However, if you are writing using ChatGPT, it will often include an introduction and outro for every section, please just keep the middle part of it that’s valuable. Don’t create an intro and outro for every single point on your blog post, people (and Google) will hate it. That’s not the way to make blog posts longer!

Is SEO Dead in 2024?

I have heard so many things about the Google algorithm. Someone posted something on threads that really upset me. They were saying “SEO is dead”, “SEO doesn’t work anymore” and “everyone selling SEO services must be so panicked because Google is so terrible”, and “it’s time to diversify our marketing strategies” (which I always think we need to do this anyway!).

This person who posted has a high traffic website, and maybe Google isn’t the same for those high traffic websites, I can’t speak to that because I mostly deal with small businesses, specifically a lot of service-based businesses. Because we don’t need 500,000 views from Google to get a strong ROI, SEO is certainly not dead for us.

But what bothers me is she’s giving this advice out and (from what I can see) is still optimizing for SEO. So she’s saying it’s not important, but she’s still optimizing for herself. So clearly she DOES still think it’s important. It’s scare tactics. If you are getting these messages and wondering if SEO is dead, just remember, people are not always following all the advice their dishing out and we have to be so vigilant. It’s upsetting that out algorithms have created such an all or nothing mentality that is just leading to really bad marketing advice.

Google Algorithm Updates in March 2024

Here’s the truth: Google is rolling out a new algorithm update. They are testing things to create a better platform. If you are getting traffic from easy answers that can be replaced with their Google AI answer, I think those sites MAY see a more dramatic dip. For example, if I Google “what should I feed my 2-year-old for dinner”, it’s going to auto-populate an answer for me using AI that I might get my answer from. However, if I am Googling “how to start a luxury brand,” I don’t want a generic AI answer, I want to read a blog post from a branding designer.

To piggy back on last weeks episode with Mariah Magazine where she focuses on breaking down SEO, we have to think about search intent. And be mindful that we don’t need million page views to run a profitable business.

Traffic from my Love at First Travel business has only continued to rise regardless of algorithm updates. Google and SEO is so good and worth it. I would say in the first 12 months when you are putting a lot into it and not seeing the results right now, it can be really easy to fall prey to these messages and stop. And maybe it isn’t possible to get to a million page views anymore, but for the people listening to this podcast, SEO is not dead and it’s not that hard and it really just requires consistency and some tweaking.

If Google makes a huge shift, so for example, I would say a huge shift was when it started prioritizing people putting answers at the beginning. It’s not that hard to adapt to it. All the blog posts you’ve written are not gone overnight, you might need to make little tweaks to the content. But it’s so worth it in the end.

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Google Wants to Match Users to Better Content – Which is a GOOD Thing To Keep In Mind As You Make Blog Posts Longer

I hope these tips to make blog posts longer have been helpful. Remember, the changes Google wants to see is the same thing that people want to see. Their goal is to match people with the content they’re searching for. Right now, Google is dealing with a ton of garbage AI content to make blog posts longer that is flooding of the interweb, and they’re learning to navigate that. I really think it’s a problem that affects much larger information sites than it will ever your small business.

Remember episode 5 when Sarah Beau talked about how she ghosted her audience for a year and still gets a majority of her business from Google? That was THIS year. Keep that in mind and please keep blogging!

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I'm Kara - the voice behind some of the brands you know and love (I know because I love them too!). I'm results-driven and ambitious, just like YOU.

Meet Kara