There are a lot of myths about SEO that are actually hurting your website’s search rankings, and one of the most prominent is that you don’t need to worry about the title tags on each post. This couldn’t be farther from the truth. The title tag is your chance to upsell users and convince them to click through on your link from Google’s search engine results pages (SERP). And just like any other marketing tactic, you want to use it correctly to be successful.
The title tag is your chance to upsell users and convince them to click through on your link from Google’s search engine results pages (SERP). And just like any other marketing tactic, you want to use it correctly to be successful.
What Is a Title Tag?
A title tag is a text that appears in the “title” or “heading” section of an HTML or XHTML web page’s source code. It typically has between 50-70 characters and is used like any other sentence, but when viewed on Google’s SERP, it should have a call-to-action text for your users (i.e. “click here”).
Why title tags are important
Google’s search engine uses the content of your title tag to determine how relevant your page is to the keyword or phrase that was searched for. Therefore, it’s an important factor in establishing your presence on Google and in giving you a greater chance of people clicking through your link. If you don’t have a call to action in your title tag, or don’t have one that is compelling enough for users, they won’t click on it.
Here are a couple more reasons why title tags are important:
First impressions count: Having the right text in your title tag is important because the first thing that users see when they search Google is the title. In addition, if they click through your link, they’ll be taken to a page that doesn’t have much content. So if you want to get them to click through on your link, they’re going to have a very hard time understanding what it’s all about or coming back to it.
User engagement: Users are fickle creatures who can become distracted by something else very quickly. They’re looking for something that’s relevant and will keep them engaged until they do what you need them to do (click on your link)
Brand leverage: If you have a strong brand, your users will be more likely to click through on your link even if they don’t know what it’s all about. This is why it’s important to take the time to create a powerful title that has an impact on your user’s mind.
How To Create A Title Tag
Although it used to be that you had to use HTML or XHTML, now with the advent of WordPress, Joomla!, and other content management systems (CMS), you can just as easily do this in WordPress without learning HTML or XHTML.
How to Craft the Perfect Title Tag
There are a few key factors to crafting the perfect title tag for every post. The first thing you’ll want is a call-to-action text that will encourage users to click through on your link. For example, if you’re blogging about interior design, your title tag might read “How To Create A Chic Living Room On A Budget.”
Another important factor is including your keyword in the title tag as close to the beginning as possible—but without overstuffing. It should be clear what topic you’re writing about from just the title tag and not include unnecessary filler words like “how to,” “and,” or “is.
Pay attention to length
A title tag should be between 50-70 characters. Any shorter and your users might not see what you’re trying to say, and any longer and they may become annoyed.
Also, keep in mind that there’s no need to include the keyword in your title tag every time you write about it. You’ll want to focus on a few key areas instead, such as how the topic relates to your niche or what parts of it were most important. This is called keyword repetition and helps drive more attention from users searching for similar terms.
Lastly, make sure that the call-to-action text doesn’t run over two lines of text because Google will cut off your search results for queries too long to fit on one line.
Use your target keyword
When you’re optimizing the title tag, use your target keyword (the one you’re trying to rank for) once per post and as close to the beginning of your title tag as possible. It should be clear what topic you’re writing about from just the title tag and not include unnecessary filler words like “how to,” “and,” or “is.”
For example, if my target keyword was “how to paint kitchen cabinets,” I might write:
“How To Paint Kitchen Cabinets Like A Pro – 7 Tips For Painting Your Home’s Most-Used Room”
Your search results will only show up when people search for this specific term, so try to use it as often as possible in your content.
Powerful, but Short: Title Tags
Title tags are hard to get right. They’re short and simple, yet people still make mistakes. But now you know how to create the perfect title tag with a good call-to-action text that will help you upsell your users and drive traffic back to your site. If you want more tips on improving your search rankings with better optimization techniques and effective content distribution methods, check out Content Marketing Institute’s FREE ebook.
Now that you know how to create the perfect title tag, it’s time for you to put that knowledge into action. You don’t want to be “that guy” who didn’t do his homework and tried doing this without writing a content strategy or any original text. The better your original text, the better your optimization will be and the higher your chance of getting traffic from your target keyword.
This is important because once you start getting traffic from search engines like Google, Yahoo!, or Bing, it’s basically free traffic forever (or at least until somebody ranks above you). And once that happens, all it takes is some simple optimization techniques to regain that lost search engine traffic.