Like most bloggers, I’m always interested in increasing the quality and quantity of comments and inbound links to my posts. I decided to do some analysis to see if I could find any patterns or trends by looking at some of my existing posts.
I started by breaking them down into 3 classifications:
- List posts (primarily links to other resources)
- Articles under 1,000 words
- Articles over 1,000 words.
I tend to write longer posts than many bloggers and I was curious to see if this had any effect on the links and comments that were received. My thought was that maybe some readers tend to ignore longer posts, which would lead to fewer comments and links.
For this experiment I analyzed posts that were published between August 1 and September 13 (I didn’t use more recent posts because they still have comments and links coming in). During this time period I had 4 list posts (101 Ways to Monetize Your Website of Blog, 89 Community Sites for Webmasters, 31 Sources of Quality, Free Icons, and 77 Resources to Simplify Your Life as a Web Designer), 14 posts under 1,000 words, and 8 posts over 1,000 words.
This is what I found:
- List posts averaged 24.3 comments and 19.8 links
- Posts under 1,000 words averaged 11.6 comments and 3.6 links
- Posts over 1,000 words averaged 10.8 comments and 3.5 links
(Note: When counting the links, I ignored internal links from this blog as well as links from blog carnivals that I submitted to.)
As you can see, the difference between short posts and long posts was very minimal, but there was a huge jump for list posts (these numbers have actually increased since I counted as new comments and links are still coming to these posts). That is not surprising since those posts have received much more traffic than many of the others.
So, after seeing that there has been virtually no difference in the number of comments and links due to the length of the post, I decided to look at one more factor. During this time period I published 5 posts (excluding the 4 lists posts mentioned above) that included a number in the title (30 Keyword Tools to Use for Your Website, Top 10 SEO-Related WordPress Plugins, 9 Essential Tools for Bloggers, 8 Tools to Help You Find the Right Domain Name, and 10 Tips for Making Your Blog Posts More del.icio.us).
These posts didn’t fall into the list category because they provide a significant amount of written content as opposed to just links to other resources. However, having a number in the title seemed to draw more attention from readers as these posts averaged 16 comments and 5.8 links. The list posts also all included a number in the title, so it seems that using numbers in titles can affect the success of the post.
If you want to prove me wrong you can leave a lot of comments and links to this post since it doesn’t have a number in the title.
What factors have you found to increase comments and links on your own blog?