Definition and what is the ideal number of words for each page?

What is Thin Content in SEO? Should we care about word count when optimizing a web page for natural referral (SEO)? What is the ideal number of words to produce for a news article, feature article, product paper, or product category? If Google doesn’t communicate regularly on this topic, two recent interventions give us some answers.

What is “thin content”?

The ” poor content‘, or ‘thin content’, is a term used to refer to Pages that add little value to the Internet users who access them.

“Poor content”

Pages affected by thin content are not necessarily pages with a few words, they are above all pages that do not provide an adequate (or sufficient quality and detailed) response to the Internet user.

Of course, as a general rule, the lower the total word size on the page, the more likely the content is incomplete or deceptive (except for queries associated with search intents of the “instant answer” type: ex: translation, definition, weather, …).

Thus, Google often highlights pages that contain very few words, but fully meet the search objective of the Internet user. Here is an example of such a query that, at the time of writing, places a page with less than 80 words in the first position (Wiktionary.org) of a query with a relatively large average monthly search volume (>3000).

Google’s definition of thin content

“One of the most important steps to improving your site’s ranking in Google search results is to make sure it contains plenty of rich information, including relevant, appropriately used keywords that indicate what your content is about. However, some site owners are trying to improve Rank their pages and attract visitors by creating pages with lots of words but little or no original content. Google will take action against domains that try to rank higher by showing you plagiarized pages or other pages that don’t add intrinsic value to users.”

Source: Google

5 Examples of Thin Content According to Google

Thus, for Google, a site or page that meets the definition of “lean content” would be a site:

  1. display non-original content fetched from third party websites (via data scraping);
  2. publish automatically generated content (by artificial intelligence, via content rotation and automatic translation for example);
  3. Its sole purpose is to redirect Internet users to affiliate links, without providing good information to readers;
  4. Displays duplicate content from another website on its website;
  5. It uses the technology of “portal pages” which consists of creating many pages that are very similar to each other to redirect the Internet user to a home page at a later stage.

What are Google’s official recommendations for word count (and thin content)?

If historically a search engine recommended a minimum of 80 words per news article, Google no longer recommends a minimum word count for each article (Dedicated section removed from Webmaster Quality Guidelines).

At the same time, after updating the useful content, Danny Sullivan and John Mueller also answered certain questions from the webmasters (including ours) by providing some clarification on the subject:

  • Danny Sullivan, Google Representative He also said on Twitter It wasn’t It is not recommended to add content just to reach the theoretical target word count. In other words, Google recommends simply creating the number of words necessary to add value to the reader.
  • John Mueller On the other hand, he indicated That word count is not a sign of thin content. According to him, content should only be useful, no matter how many words are needed to make it useful.
  • John Mueller also pointed out These articles, even old and in a few words, could still be relevant today, and so weren’t necessarily relevant to being deleted/redirected in 301 to the main category.

And therefore, Thus, Google useful content can count 100 words as 5000 words depending on the target query and search intent of the internet user.

For example, we can easily define a term in 100 words for a request of type “Define thin content”, and conversely, it would be difficult to respond qualitatively to “How to get a good reference on Google” with 100-word content because the number of concepts to be explained Important.

How many words should you ideally write for each type of page?

I understood that, if there is no official word size recommended in SEO, depending on the type of page, the Internet user’s search intent, the level of detail an Internet user can wait at their request, and the size of text to be typed to satisfy both the user and the search engine will vary.

In this section we present Some keys to help you perfectly determine the number of words to type according to the type of page in question.

These volumes, which are intended to be indicative, will be adapted to competition, SERP, and level of difficulty in locating them on demand.

Here is a summary of what is recommended in this section by page type:

  • Main article: between 800 and 4000 words;
  • News article (Google News / Google Discover): between 100 and 800 words;
  • Product Sheet: Between 200 and 2000 words;
  • E-Commerce Category: Between 100 and 3000 words.

How many words should ideally be written for each featured article?

to Article featurewhich is aimed at a fairly detailed research intent, on a somewhat competitive topic, with many elements to be addressed, The fixed target word size is often between 800 and 4000 words.

How many words should you ideally write for a news article (or Google Discover)?

to News article or Google Discover, which are aimed at objective research, there is no minimum recommended word size (although it was 80 initially). So you can position yourself very well, according to the processed news, with articles Between 100 and 800 words.

Articles with more words will of course be able to position themselves very well on Google News and Google Discover.

How many words should you ideally write for a product sheet?

for one product sheet, the ideal number of words will depend above all on the complexity of the product in question. The more complex the product, the more possible explanations it will require about its use or composition, the higher the ideal word count accordingly. Thus, Consistent target word size can be 200 or 2000 words from one product sheet to another.

How many words should you ideally write for a category?

In SEO, it is often advised to add “SEO text” in product categories. But in reality, this content rarely adds value to category pages, and Google knows that.

In order to achieve real added value, we advise you to prefer Short marketing content (reassuring, optimized for conversion) above the visible line (eg: less than 100 words) and the Longest contents at the bottom of the product list To answer any questions a potential buyer may have regarding this product listing. This type of Thus the content of the FAQ can range from 500 to 3000 words depending on the number of questions covered.

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