How long does it take to read a newsletter?

How long does it take to read a newsletter?

People have been asking us how long it takes to read a newsletter-- and that answer depends on a combination of factors:

  • The type of writing: You read fiction faster than nonfiction
  • Your age: Kids and elderly folks tend to read slower than those in between

  • Your primary language: If you’re reading in a second language, it is likely to take longer.

  • If you’re reading out loud or in your head: Out loud takes longer, but most people are reading newsletters silently in their own heads.

  • Length of the newsletter: (obviously…)  If it’s longer, it’ll take you longer.

Let’s assume an “average” newsletter reader is: an adult, reading non-fiction in their primary language in their head.

This “average” reader will read 238 words per minute (wpm). And most adults will fall in the range of 175-300 wpm.

Based on the “length factor” of the newsletter, here is how long, on average, you would expect it to take to read...

[Note: If the newsletter were fiction (which most are not) on average you’d read 260 wpm, with a range of 200-320wpm]

We encourage writers to indicate how long their newsletters tend to be so that you have a sense for how long it will take to read them. We know that’s important info! 

Citation: Numbers came from this 2019 meta-analysis research publication by Marc Brysbaert in the Journal of Memory and Language.   


Sign up for our newsletter

Let us deliver intriguing, curated content straight to your inbox...

By signing up, you agree to our Terms of Service and Privacy Policy.