Will a longer hub keep the reader around longer and achieve a higher google pagerank?
Yes, but there is a point at which more words are wasted.
Last year, one Hubber did extensive research and found that Hubs of 800 to 1,500 words did better.
However, once a Hub gets to around 1,500 words, readers are unlikely to continue scrolling down - their attention span is exhausted and they'll click on another link and leave.
So ideally, you should aim to split your subject into several 1,500 word Hubs.
That shouldn't be difficult - if you were writing a book, you'd split it into chapters, so why not split it into Hubs?
And for completeness, I should say there is a contrary view which says it's best to write Hubs of about 400 to 500 words and interlink them - more Hubs gives more pieces for Google to find.
It's extremely rare for readers of webpages to read long ones. The web tends to promote a "buffet table" style of reading where people browse and sample and move to another page quickly.
Keep them interested and / or give them an easy way to navigate. It's rare for readers to scroll, scroll, scrolling unless they are reading for entertainment (which isn't conducive to sales and ad clicks), not for information.
When looking for information, they search for pages that are narrowly focused on their topic and deliver what they're looking for quickly.
So write lots of short pieces covering different aspects of a subject, with an overview page that serves as a navigation hub.
Disclaimer: this is my experience from writing elsewhere on the web. I frequently violate this tenet because I have trouble adapting to the best writing style for a web audience. But if you're interested in traffic, views and reader interaction, it's best to rein in the urge to be comprehensive and aim to be useful and essential.
Having more Hub content doesn't automatically mean that readers will stay longer or that the Hub will rank higher with Google. That all depends on the usefulness and quality of the content.
I agree with Relache it has to be quality and if you make the hub to long, you will lose your readers. You should split it up into a series and make them only about 500-1000 words per hub.
Why will i lose my readers if the hub is twice as long as the usual max?
People get bored and stop reading before the end. Then you will find off the wall comments on your work and wonder why they never finished.
Typical internet readers are seldom interested in an encyclopedia. They are skimmers, coming to your hub for a specific piece of information. If they can't find it in just a very few minutes they are gone to someone else that can provide it quickly and easily.
I disagree slightly with AEvans in that a good length for what you are trying to do would be a little longer. 1000 words to 2000 or maybe 3000. It is difficult to cover even small subjects thoroughly in less than 1000 words.
By making a series of hubs you can also employ and make good use of additional keywords, drawing more visitors. You can interlink the hubs, providing at least a small SEO boost. Organic links coming can provide an even wider range of viewer interests, some of which would probably be interested in other in depth information on the same basic subject.
It depends on your topic. I have a few hubs in the 1500-2500 word range with lots of comments and page views.
In my opinion, that is too many words. It can be divided into 500-1000 word articles. Most readers on the internet do not read - they scan. If your content is too large they may be turned off and leave the page.
Of course, this depends on the topic and other factors, but I would say 500-1000 words are the best.
Quality is more important than quantity, but you still need some quantity.
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