How to write a longread that will be read to the end

Team TeachWiki

The main thing that distinguishes a good longread is a deep immersion into the topic. Often the author has to thoroughly study many different sources and conduct his own research.

Let's say you have a great copywriter who writes lively, interesting posts for social networks and short articles for your blog. Users read them with pleasure, activity and involvement are high. Are these skills enough to write a longread? What should you consider when creating content in this format? We'll talk about everything below.

What is longread

Long read literally means “to read for a long time.” Does this mean that any lengthy article will be considered a longread? And how many characters should it contain - 5, 10 or 30 thousand?

In reality, volume is not that important. The main thing for a longread is structure and full disclosure of the topic. A text of 20–30 thousand characters may not be a longread if it contains a lot of water and useless information. The main thing that distinguishes a good longread is a deep immersion into the topic. Often the author has to thoroughly study many different sources and conduct his own research. And now we come to the point that creating a longread is a rather labor-intensive task.

Do you need it?

This format is not suitable for everyone, and often it is simply not necessary, because the scope of the company’s activities and the interests of the target audience may be limited to short posts or video format.

But this does not mean that a long article will not be useful. Most people feel the need for information and are happy to read voluminous articles on areas that interest them.

In what cases will a longread be useful to you:

  1. If you have a complex technical product or a product that requires disclosure of functional features. In this case, you can publish the review in longread format.

  2. If you have an information resource and an audience hungry for new information.

  3. If you have expertise and can share your own analytics, research, or simply useful facts related to your field of activity.

  4. If you want to tell a story: cover an event or introduce the reader to a representative of your company or a person associated with your business.

If you want to get more results from SEO promotion . Among search engine ranking factors, text length occupies one of the key positions.

What are the longread formats?


This could be an expert analysis, a description of the results of experiments or surveys. Often this type of article is used in the field of marketing, real estate and business consulting. In such articles, graphs, tables and diagrams are very useful for better perception of information.


The ideal thing for this format is to immerse the reader in a specific event or story. Not just talk about what happened, but convey emotions and give the opportunity to feel the story.

Such a project was created by the Al Jazeera channel , where the stories of Syrian refugees were told using video reports from different people. Great attention was paid to interactivity: each slide is a separate story, video and photo reports from journalists.


It is often used to present media personalities and build a personal brand. This format can be used in any business if you want to tell about the success story of one of the company’s representatives. The material will allow clients to better understand the values ​​of the people who built this business and will bring you closer to the audience.

A stunning example of such a longread is an article about fashion photographer Newton Hellmuth.

Commercial longread

This is a kind of review of your product. Promotes sales growth by revealing the properties of a product or the features of a service. For inspiration, we recommend the Xbox review on Polygon: detailed photos, nice design and structured text with an emphasis on key points.

Here the authors used one cool feature: “We were not able to completely deplete the charge on our controllers after a week and a half of constant play , ” instead of the boring “retains charge for 10 days with active play.”

Interactive format

Longread is not only text. You can take infographics, videos, colorful photographs as a basis and create material based on them, as NYTimes did . Journalists followed the climbers who climbed the 900-meter-high El Capitan rock.

How to choose a topic for a longread

Of course, the topic should be relevant and interesting to your target audience. But there is no point in writing simply to reflect a popular agenda or to harp on well-worn issues because they are “hype.”

Our advice is that when choosing a topic for a longread, focus on what you are good at and can share your expertise with. If you write about something that interests you, then you put more inspiration into it, and the reader certainly feels it.

And don’t forget about the purpose for which you are creating a longread. The title of the article and the topic itself should be clear to the reader - do not use too general formulations like “Tips for a beginning investor.” Even if the content of the article is super useful, many simply will not know about it.

How to think through the structure

The most effective method for creating a successful longread structure that takes into account search engine optimization is to collect a cluster of keywords and expand each query. At the same time, remember that you don’t need to try to fit all thematic queries into one article and make a hodgepodge out of a longread. Follow the rule: “One article - one topic,” but let it be revealed to the smallest detail. The reader should not have any questions left - that’s what the longread is created for.

There is another simple way: while thinking through the structure, assemble a children's pyramid. Its basis is your topic, the rings are those directions that make the article complete and reveal details. The pyramid should not be assembled chaotically, go from the largest ring to the smaller one, so that the reader does not have to jump from thought to thought, and he systematically moves towards a full understanding of the topic.

An example of the detailed structure of an article about creating a website:

How to keep the reader's attention until the end

Let's share a few techniques that will keep the audience's interest and prevent them from getting bored while reading:

  1. Use visuals. Continuous text looks boring, and even upon first viewing, many people do not want to read it. If you add interesting graphics, funny illustrations, videos or gifs, it will attract attention. In addition, they will dilute the text, making it easier for the reader to perceive the material.

  2. To create infographics and illustrations, you don’t have to hire a designer—you can use ready-made templates and designers, such as and Creately .

  3. Break the text into blocks. This is another feature that helps not to bore the reader. Short text is easier to comprehend, and when you format your article in small paragraphs, the likelihood that it will be read to the end is higher.

  4. Convey emotions. It’s like with an interesting book - when the reader is immersed in the plot, is in it, he can no longer be torn away from reading. Therefore, even if your material is based on facts, present them as a picture from life - with examples, metaphors, etc. This way, your head will not contain dry text, but images and pictures. Illustrations and photographs can also add emotional coloring.

  5. Come up with a hero. Let's say you want to write a commercial longread and talk about different characteristics of a product. It will be much clearer and more interesting to read the story of Petya Ivanov, who spent a long time choosing, say, the ideal SaaS service, trying to understand how they differ.

  6. Prepare your article. If you are hosted on third-party resources, find out what features the site has. You can beautifully design a longread using ReadyMag or Stampsy .

How to evaluate the effectiveness of a longread

It all depends on where you publish the material and what your goal is. In general, the effectiveness of a longread is assessed in the same way as any other article - by the number of clicks on links, if they are in the text, the amount of time spent on the page, the number of leads and other conversions. To track performance, use utm tags, Google analytics or Yandex.Metrica.


Creating a longread is not an easy task. To keep the reader's attention until the very end, you need to do a lot of work - collect enough material, analyze many sources and study different opinions, and then put the information into a format that is not boring and understandable for the audience. This is a resource-intensive process, but with a good result, these costs are fully justified.

You don’t have to do everything yourself; you can turn to specialists who work with different content formats. Content Writers has extensive experience in creating longreads for many business sectors. Contact them and they will figure out which format is best for your company and how to implement it.