Saturday, April 17, 2010

How to Make the Best Title Tag Possible


  1. Brand your traffic

    Use the title of your site or brand at the beginning or end of every title tag to help searchers know where they're going and to increase return visits. If you're struggling to find justification for this component, think of all the ad studies showing that consumers are willing to pay more for a "brand name" product than an off-brand or store brand item of the same type - apply this logic to the SERPs and you'll find that users will go further down the rankings to click on a "trusted" brand.


  2. Limit length to 65 characters (including spaces) or less

    There's no reason to cut off the last word and have it replaced with a "..." Note that the engines have fluctuated recently and Google, in particular, is now supporting up to 70 characters in some cases.


  3. Incorporate keyword phrases

    This one may seem obvious, but it's critical that whatever your keyword research shows as being the most valuable for capturing searches gets prominently included in your title tag. It doesn't have to be the first words, but it should be the semantic and logical center of attention.


  4. Target longer phrases if they're relevant

    When choosing what keywords to include in a title tag, I often like to use as many as are completely relevant to the page at hand, while remaining accurate and descriptive. Thus, it can be much more valuable to have a title tag like "Blogspot | Google Seo Rules with Algorithm" rather than simply "Blogspot | Google Seo Rules" - including those additional terms that are both relevant to the page and receive significant search traffic can bolster your page's value. However, if you have a separate landing page for "Skiing accessories" than for "equipment," then you shouldn't include one term in the other's title - you'll be cannibalizing your rankings by forcing the engines to choose which page on your site is more relevant.


  5. Use a divider

    When splitting up the brand from the descriptive, I like to use the "|" symbol (aka the pipe bar). Others choose the arrow ">" or hyphen "-" and both work well. At times, however, I've found it useful to use the arrow or hyphen inside a title tag, as with a title like "blogspot | Articles > Keyword Research - A Beginner's Guide" hence my love of the pipe bar.

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