Having the same word-count as a top-ranking article isn't going to make your pages rank first, just like having a bunch of USB chargers isn't going to get you to the moon. But, I'm still tempted to buy some of those USB chargers...https://t.co/TIuJHwHufn
While it’s clear that there isn’t a specific, optimal number that guarantees high search results, does that mean word count really has no impact on your rankings?
Mueller said word count itself isn’t a ranking factor, but he didn’t say that word count doesn’t impact other ranking factors. Similar to how meta descriptions aren’t a ranking factor but can help influence the click-through rate from the SERP, which is a ranking factor.
This doesn’t come without a warning, though. Word count does not equate to quality content. Just because long-form content can provide you with the opportunity to write more doesn’t mean the additional content always needs to be written.
Roger Montti notes in a recent Search Engine Journal article that his publication’s “goal for being comprehensive or for reaching an arbitrary word count caused their content to become about something other than what they were targeting.”
If your long-form content is overwritten and goes off-topic, you could actually hurt your SEO because it doesn’t, in the end, relate to the relevancy of the user’s search.
“Don’t shoot for a particular word count — just make sure you cover a topic in full. Whether that takes 500 words or 10,000, the key is that you are creating the best resource available for your target keyword.”
Ultimately, you want to write to answer the user’s question or intent for their search.
If you’re looking for best practices in regards to a specific number, though, I always recommend aiming for at least 750 words for content that isn’t list or definition driven because it will provide you with enough room to answer questions thoroughly and include meaningful, appropriate links.
When you have list articles — like a how-to article — or articles defining terms or trends, you can go even shorter because getting to the point and providing the reader with the information they are looking for is the most important thing you should do.
When a topic calls for more information, you should provide it. The majority of the content my team reviews is between 1,200 and 3,000 words for blog articles and more than 8,000 words for pillar pages.
The number one piece of advice we always give is “write until you’re done.”