Opinion

What makes a blog different from an article?

Asheen Raven
15th Feb 2017
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The advent of the internet era has brought about a sea change in how we read. While verbose literature ruled the roost in the past, it is now falling behind to quick, snappy writing that gets the point across using less words, while taking up less of the reader’s time.

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This is a very important lesson to keep in mind if you are writing for an internet audience. Blog writing is the order of the day when it comes to online writing, with even successful entrepreneurs reaching out through the medium. But it can be easily confused with article writing, which is a different ballgame altogether. Writers may end up confusing the two, and as a result, your work might just fail to appeal to your core audience the way you want it to.

It is crucial to understand the differences between blogs and articles as the two can often be confused. Here’s a quick guide that aims to help you distinguish the two.

SEO keywords

Search Engine Optimisation helps content reach a wider audience and is a key factor behind blogs and write-ups going viral. Blogs are built around SEO keywords and the writing is often changed to incorporate the same. For example, in a blog about Manchester United Football Club, the author will have to include key terms such as ‘Red Devils’, ‘Mourinho’ or ‘Man Utd’ for the piece to have better traction on the internet.

On the other hand, putting in SEO keywords isn’t necessary in an article. Even if the article is published on the internet, there isn’t too much of an emphasis on putting in SEO keywords.

Personal opinion

The vast majority of articles, besides op-ed pieces, look to steer clear of personal opinion. They are based more on reportage, information, and statistics. However, blogs often describe things from a personal perspective, with a lesser reliance on reportage and data.

For example, an article on the new Union Budget of India will contain comparisons to previous budgets, statistical data and reactions from a wide variety of people. However, a blog on the budget can consist solely of the views of the author and his opinions on the new budget.

Editing

Articles are usually written for large publications and go through a thorough editing cycle to make sure that there aren’t any errors. On the other hand, blogs are usually self-published or go through minimal editing.

This may not be the case for much longer, with editing being a crucial step in the process of publication and blogs constantly evolving. However, the internet presents a free-for-all platform, and as things stand, the lack of scrutiny and editing is a key feature of blog writing.

Length and style

The most noticeable difference between a blog and an article is the difference in writing style and the length of the piece. Blogs can range anywhere from 300 to 1000 words, but articles are often much lengthier. Depending on the publication, the standard length of an article can vary from 1500 to 5000 words.

The writing style for blogs has a very casual tone to it. It’s often short and doesn’t include too many words that are hard to grasp. Articles aim to emulate literature in a journalistic style while blogs aim to get the point across in commonly used language and terminology.

The different nuances to writing a blog and an article will help writers to target their audience better. There is a need for both and the sets of people that they cater to can even overlap, however the fact remains that understanding which kind of content to offer goes a long way in ensuring that your writing makes the desired impact. The key here is to make sure that the reader’s expectations are met.

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