Our free online word counter will automatically count how many words, characters, and paragraphs are in your text. We’ll even calculate how long it would take to read or speak your word count. Just type or paste your text below to get started!
Word Counter Tool Instructions
- Enter your text into the textbox above.
- Our tool will automatically count the number of words and characters in your text.
- That’s it! Use the word or character count wherever you need.
Why Word Count Is Important
Sometimes you as a writer may be required to write within in a certain word or character limit. College essays are a classic example of where this is the case where students have to write 250-, 500-, or 1000-word essays.
Some people may write more than the expected length of the material, while others fall short of the words. Whether writers have trouble writing too few works or too many, a word counter can help. So why do you need to worry about word count?
Keeping a strict word count not only benefits writers but the publishers and agents as well. Readers also benefit from word count limits since they can often read more efficiently and aren’t just trying to wade through a list of details. Regardless of what kind of writer you are, you should keep word count in mind as you’re writing.
What Is Word Count?
To understand how to count words, we need to know what a word actually is. A word is made of characters that are separated by punctuation marks or spaces. In computer science, even emojis are considered words since they meet the definition of characters being separated by spaces. The total number of these “words” in a document or piece of content is called word count.
Word count may be applied when a piece of text is needed to stay within a certain number of words. Sometimes this is dictated by outside forces, such as a professor or lawyer, but other times it is done simply to make the text easier to read.
Teachers may require students to write essays with a certain word limit. Sometimes a teacher may assign a page or paragraph limit instead, but these can then be translated to word counts. A paragraph typically contains around 100 to 200 words while a page typically contains 250 to 500 words depending on whether it’s single or double spaced.
There are a lot of word counter tools online and included within word processors, such as Microsoft Word, but we hope that you enjoy ours.
Social Media Word Counts
Various social media channels have word and character limits for the content you post to their sites. Below are the word count limits for various social media platforms.
Twitter Character Count
Twitter allows up to 280 characters in regular Tweets and 10,000 characters in DMs (Direct Messages). The ideal length of a Tweet is 71-100 Characters.
Facebook Post Character Limits
Facebook has very generous character limits of up to 63,206 characters per post. However, the ideal length of a Facebook post is 40-80 characters.
Instagram Character Limits
The limit for an Instagram caption is 2,200 characters, but the ideal length is 138-150 characters. The maximum length of an Instagram bio is 150 characters.
Importance of Word Count for Readers
Before you begin writing content, whether it’s a book or article, consider the purpose of the content. Whether you aim to inform, to persuade, or to entertain, you have to make sure that your article will be engaging to the readers. Knowing your purpose will inform your word count.
Word count is an important factor for readers. You need to balance the right amount of detail while maintaining your audience’s attention. Readers may be able to quickly read a 150 words article, but they may not have all of the details they need. However, if you expanded it to 4,000 words, your readers may get bored.
The average attention span of a reader is eight seconds so keep your content succinct, but detailed enough for comprehension. Some readers skim efficiently while others will need to read more. You should also know the reading level of your audience. The Flesch-Kincaid Readability Test is a good starting point.
If you’re writing a novel, then the rules as stated beforehand might not apply. The word count for novels that readers would definitely be interested in would be over 40,000 words. The average length would depend on the genre of the novel. For instance, a romance novel would range from 50,000 to 90,000 words. A science fiction novel, on the other hand, would range from 90,000 to 125,000 words.
Why is there a word limit for novels? This is because readers have a certain expectation as to the what they are going to read. For readers of fantasy novels, for instance, they will expect a longer word count because they are more than willing to immerse themselves in a new and unknown world. Readers of romance novels, on the other hand, would like to delve themselves in the lives of two people, hence the length of the story.
Overall, since the readers are the clients of the article or novel, their interests should be taken into consideration.
Why Word Count Is Important for SEO
As mentioned earlier, word count is essential in academic writing and novel writing, each with their own reasons. But for digital marketing, say using Search Engine Optimization (SEO), would word count still be vital? Of course. Word count for SEO is vital and longer-form content with a higher word count tend to perform better.
In fact, a study by SERPIQ shows why word count is so important for SEO.
What Word Count Should You Use for SEO?
The answer really depends on the nature of your article. For FAQ articles, a word count of at least 500 words work best. For reviews and editorial content, we recommend at least 1,500 words.
There is no direct effect of word count in ranking above your competition. However, it is a common knowledge that longer pieces often outshine articles with shorter lengths. This is because people assume that articles with higher word count have a higher authority and engagement, and in turn, success. Hence, they will click these articles rather than the shorter ones. Furthermore, longer content (which consists of at least a thousand words) tends to allow websites to show up in search results.
At present, more and more content writers are advocating for substance rather than the number of words. Relevance to a user’s query matter more. This is because such articles which contain relevant information are more beneficial to them. But that reason does not imply that we lessen the number of words in our articles. For SEO articles, considering the word count still matters as the content. Hence, make sure that there is a balance between these two factors.
In a specific number of words, you should have discussed all the essential things that you want your reader to know. You should have also included the tips and tricks to make your article more SEO-friendly. These include placing links, ensuring the keyword density, and increasing the readability levels. Once you are done, make sure that the word count is not thin. Thin content could end up being flagged and would not rank as highly in search engines.
Whatever your purpose be when writing – to entertain, to persuade, or to inform – you should consider the length of your article. Also, you will have a better chance at ranking in various search engines. So go ahead, count your words with our free word counter above.