The Data Is In: 47 Powerful Statistics for Writing Winning Blog Posts in 2020

Writing Winning Blog Posts

You can get a lot of advice from bloggers about how to write a good blog post, but there’s nothing better than statistics to bring a point home.

My blog focuses specifically on B2B copywriting and content creation, so I wanted to find important data specifically for those who write blog articles.

The information below will be helpful to any marketer, content creator, freelancer copywriter, or even small business owners who have blogging responsibilities. These statistics are also important for larger businesses that lack the in-house resources for a dedicated writer. Without knowing the how-to’s of writing your articles, it will be an uphill battle reach the key blogging goals: gaining credibility, developing a targeted, loyal audience, and driving website traffic and conversions.

Writing Blogs with Better Resuts

I spent hours searching for statistics that focus on the writing aspect of blogging, rather than on blog promotion, social media, and blog usage as part of a content marketing program (which seemed to be a bulk of the available data).  My results show that the right content, not just any content, is the key to success. You can post a blog everywhere, all the time, but bad content will be a stain on your reputation. Also, it’s likely to perform poorly. After all who will want to read, share, or subscribe to a worthless blog? 

As I did my research, certain topics rose to the top, appearing again and again, demonstrating their importance to blog analysts and digital marketing experts. I humbly agree with their assessments about what to hone in on when writing and planning your blogging content. You should note that there are some discrepancies within the data, depending on the particular study, when it was done, and the methodology (you can see this most clearly on the section on article length). In these cases, I took care to include the most recent data I could find from the most trustworthy sources.

For everyone reading this, I hope this is the best list out there to tell you the best way to write your blog articles. So here we go…

Article Title

Totle
The right title can increase clicks on your article.

The article’s title is the first thing a reader sees in Google search results, so bloggers shouldn’t take crafting their article titles lightly. A great title will draw the attention of your audience, engage them right from the start, and tell search engines what the story is about. Think of how often you blow right by a boring or generic title?

Part of what to consider includes keyword research, length, and wording. Here are some tips for determining your article titles:

  1. Listicles: 36% of readers prefer list-based titles.

2. Odd Numbers: Odd-numbered listicle headlines outperform even ones by 20%.

3. How-to: The “how-to” headline, similar to a listicle, is the third most popular headline preference at around 17%.

How-to articles rank highly.
How To” titles and articles rank highly.

4. Colons & Hyphens: Using a hyphen or colon in the headline increases click-through rates by 9%.

5. Word Count & Traffic: Titles with 6-13 words attract the highest and the most consistent amount of traffic.

6. Word Count & CTR: Making your headline 6-8 words can increase your CTR by 21%.

7. Testing: Positive headline changes have the power to provide a 10% increase in clicks from internet users.

Content, Format & SEO

Content and format are huge elements in determining how you will write your blog. Should you repost, repurpose, create new content, focus on keywords? Should you create lists or share the results of case studies? What should the article look like to the reader?

These are just a few of the answers that cover these key points:

8. Focus on SEO: Bloggers who focus on SEO report strong results at much higher than average rates.

9. Keyword Research: The more the blogger researches keywords, the more likely they are to report strong results.

Keyword research chart
Research keywords is part of a blogging strategy. (Source: Orbital Media)

10. Custom Content: According to Dragon Search Marketing, “61% of consumers are influenced by custom content.”

11. Importance of Original Content: 58% of marketers said that “original written content” is the most important type of content, outdoing visuals and videos.

12. More Original Content: Up to 81% of marketers plan to increase their use of original written content.

13. Repurposing: Almost 60% of marketers repurpose their content two to five times.

14. Blog Elements: Visual, scannable, credible, and collaborative blog posts are in general the best performing blog elements.

Important blog post elements
Placing various elements in your article engages readers. (Source: Orbital Media)

15. Chunking: 43% of people admit to skimming blog posts, rather than reading the entire article. Separating blog post content into easily digesting chunks can be done with visuals, subheads, bullets, and other features that give the eye a break.

16. Lists: 49% of successful blog posts contain at least one list item.

Length

I was amazed at just how many statistics there are about how long a blog post should be. Many of these statistics seem to conflict with each other, making this a confusing issue to nail down. Some of this depends on the type and methodology of the study, how up-to-date the study was, and other factors. The gist is that blog posts have gotten increasingly longer, which has been shown to lead to greater success.

I’ve tried winnowing down this list for as much “reality” as possible in the facts below:

Length of typical article
Longer articles performs better than short ones. (Source: Orbital Media)

17. Average Article length: The average blog post is 1236 words long…56% longer than in 2014.

18. Longer Articles: Bloggers who write articles of 2,000+ words are increasing and are far more likely to have what they describe as “strong results.”

19. Short Articles: short blog posts under 500 words have been declining.

20. Shorter Articles: 200 words content is labeled as thin content by Google; On average, only 18% of companies’ blog posts are over 750 words

21. Leads: Longer, in-depth blog posts generate 9x more leads than short ones.

22. Social Engagement: Many studies have found a correlation between long-form content with higher rankings, greater social engagement, and better results in general.

Social Sharing
Good writing can help social engagement and traffic.

23. Organic Traffic: Articles with a word count between 2,250 and 2,500 earned the most organic traffic:

24. Top-Ranked Posts: The average word count of a top-ranked post in Google is 1,890 words:

25. Shares: The longer content gets more shares. Posts in 3,000 to 10,000 words range perform best because they provide a better connection for long-tail keywords which have less competition.

26. Competition: Regular content could manage with around 1,000 words. For high competition keywords, the length should be between 2,200 and 2500 words per blog post. Some put this number even higher.

27. Links: Writing longer blog posts attracts more links, and those links are from a greater number of different sites, which helps increase search ranking.

28. 1,000 vs. 2,000+ Words: The ratio of blogs with 2,000 or more words versus those with less than 1,000 words is 16:1.

Credibility

Your blog post is worth very little if your reader questions your trustworthiness. You would think that credibility would be all about good, substantial, authoritative information—and much of it is. But other factors also count. For example, good content that reads well, including proper grammar, is seen as more trustworthy. So is providing well thought out content that is valuable to the reader, rather than quickly written fluff.

Well written, quality articles are perceived as credible
Well written, quality articles are perceived as more credible.

Quality is absolutely the main factor in having your audience spend time with your articles, building a following, and driving desirable traffic to your site.

Here is some more information about boosting the credible of blog articles:

29. Trusted Source: Blogs have been rated as the 5th most trusted source for accurate online information, but this only holds if the content is valuable to the reader. 

30. Quality Content: 23% of readers think bad content affects their trust in a blog.

31. Writing Time: The average blog post takes 3 hours and 57 minutes to write…up 65% from 2014, and the time invested has kept increasing every year.

Quality articles take more time to write
Take enough time to bring up the quality–and credibility. (Source: Orbital Media)

32, Multiple Authors: 62.96% of readers perceive blogs with multiple authors to be more credible.

33. Data: Using statistics in blog posts improves consumer trust. 

34. Guest Blogging: While some see having guest bloggers as highly credible blogging tool (and great for inbound links), many people also view it as too promotional, so it’s a mixed bag.

Images

According to studies, highly visual content and success are clearly correlated. The more images a blogger adds to a typical article, the more likely they are to engage readers. Video is the most engaging content and it also has value as being a great way to avoid having a big block of dense text.

Here are some compelling reasons why adding more images to your articles is an important blogging tactic:

Images in blogs improves results
Using engaging images boosts results. (Source: Orbital Media)

35. Many Images:  Just 3% of bloggers add 10+ images per article, but they are 2.5 times [AW1] more likely to report “strong results” than the average blogger.

36. Real People: Using photos of real people instead of stock photos can result in a 35% conversion increase.

37. Videos: 43% of consumers increasingly want video content from marketers.

38. Shares: Blog posts with images get 94% more shares as compared

39. Frequent Images: Articles with an image once every 75-100 words get shared twice as much as one without.

Publishing Frequency

Blogging seems to be effective when articles are posted regularly, at least once a week. The numbers below show that blogging frequently, at least daily, can achieve the best results, but only to a point. Traffic really soars when you increase the number of your articles.

Greater blog article frequency increases search ranking.
Post more frequently to improve search ranking. (Source: Orbital Media)

This is no surprise given that Google’s algorithm favors on “fresh content” and more website pages for higher search rankings. Write your blog well, for quality and SEO, and the jump is even higher.

Note these compelling reasons for increasingly how often you publish articles:

40. Posting Daily: Bloggers that post daily get 5 times more traffic compared to those that don’t.

41. Frequency & Results: The a relationship between publishing frequency is evident, with 67% of marketers determining that daily blogging gives strong result, but after that there seems to be a point of diminishing returns.

42. Diminishing Returns: Bloggers who write more (either in length or in frequency) are more likely to report strong results, but publishing more than daily shows diminishing returns.

43. 24-51 Blog Posts: When you publish 24-51 blog posts, blog traffic increases by up to 30%:

Posting frequently boosts results
Posting articles frequently boosts blogging results.

44. 52+ Blog Posts: Once you go past 51 blog posts, you can expect a further traffic increase of up to 77%

45. Quantity and Traffic: A 100% increase in your total blog posts, increases your traffic to 300%.

46. 16+ vs. Up to 4: Companies publishing 16+ blog posts per month secured 3.5 times more traffic than those with 4 or fewer posts per month.

47. Outsourcing Can Strengthen Your Position. One final statistic to note is that 64% of B2B marketers outsource the copywriting of their blog.

Use Your Marketing Resources Wisely.

Publishing frequent, quality, SEO-friendly blogging requires planning, thought, and your most precious resource: time. If yours is a small or medium-sized business, or if your larger company’s resources are stretched too thin, outsourcing your blog writing could be your best bet. Content specialists such as Boston-based Westebbe Marketing stand by, ready to supercharge your blog. Contact Amy Westebbe at (617) 699-4462 or amy@westebbemarketing.com.

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