Guide: How to calculate reading time

Reading Time: 4 minutes 30 seconds

As a content creator, blogger, or marketer, you know that creating engaging content is crucial for building an audience. However, with so much content available online, people tend to scroll through an article to see how much time it takes to finish before they start reading.

To prevent unnecessary scrolling, you can include average reading time information in the header of your article. This way, you can inform readers right at the start of how much time they should prepare.

In this article, we will cover how to calculate reading time and how to include it in your blog posts with plugins or manually.

Reading time calculator

How to calculate reading time manually

If you want to calculate reading time manually, you need to know some numbers.

The first number is how much text your article has. We need to find your total word count. If you don't know it, you can use a word counter tool for that.

The second one is the average reading speed of your reader. This number could vary a lot depending on many factors such as the user's experience with reading, their age, and what they are trying to read. But generally speaking, the average reading speed for an English-speaking adult person is around 238 words per minute when reading silently.

So the process for counting reading time is as follows:

  • 1. Get the word count of your article, let's say 2600 words.
  • 2. Get the average reading speed, which is 238 words per minute.
  • 3. Divide the words in your article by the average reading speed: 2600 / 238 = 10.9 (10.9 minutes to read).
  • 4. Take the decimal points and multiply them by 60: 0.9 * 60 = 54 seconds.
  • 5. Replace the decimal value with the seconds: 10.9 -> 10 minutes and 54 seconds.
  • 6. The average reading time for a 2600-word long article is 10 minutes and 54 seconds.

That wasn't that hard, right? Simply remember to take the total word count and divide it by 238. Then fix the decimals by multiplying them by 60 and replacing the decimal value with the seconds. And that's it.

However, counting this way can be time-consuming, and when you have dozens of articles to finish, you don't need to waste time manually counting the average reading time. That's where our reading time calculator comes in handy.

How to calculate reading time with tools

We have shown how to calculate reading time manually, but as mentioned earlier, this can be time-consuming. That's why we have created a mini tool for that. With our reading time calculator, all you need to do is copy and paste your text into our tool, and the average reading time will appear immediately.

So, go to our tool and paste your text into the input bar. After pasting, you will see the stats on the right side of our tool. Our tool will automatically count the number of characters, words, and provide reading time estimations for you. Our tool calculates reading time for silent reading as well as reading out loud, and you are free to customize the reading speed as well.

If you know that your article is challenging to read, you can drag the slider for silent reading down to 200 words per minute. You can also do this for reading out loud. Isn't this tool great?

Reading time estimator

Popular plugins for CMS

Of course, you can use our tool very easily. If you bookmark it in your browser, it will take just a few seconds to get the reading time. However, there are also plugins available for most popular content management systems out there, and we will cover them below.

Reading time calculators for Wordpress

For WordPress there are tons of plugins out there. If you want to find them all simply go to plugins section of your WordPress administration and type "reading time" to search.

But if you want our recommendation, two good plugins are Reading Time WP and Read Meter.

Reading time calculators for Shopify

Shopify is an amazing eshop + cms platform all in one, with the ability to add plugins to your projects. If you are looking for some, check out Read Time or the paid option, Time 2 Read.

Reading time calculators for Joomla

Joomla is another CMS where you can install plugins on your own. If you are looking for reading time estimator check out this one Estimated reading time

Reading time calculators for Drupal

For drupal there is Read time which can help you with your estimations.

Reading time calculators for Wix

For Wix, well, you should have enabled reading time estimation by default. But if it is not showing, try to follow these steps:

  • Click the Wix Blog app in your Editor.
  • Click Settings.
  • Click the Display tab.
  • Select the Date and reading time checkbox.


We have demonstrated several ways to estimate reading time, including calculating it manually, using online tools for quicker estimation, and using plugins on the most popular CMS platforms out there. So, why not include reading time estimation in your blog posts? This simple addition can greatly benefit your readers by letting them know how much time they need to invest in reading your content. Moreover, it can help you attract and retain readers by providing a more convenient and user-friendly experience. So, go ahead and add reading time estimation to your posts today!