Today is the first day of Spring, and what better way to welcome the season than with some tips for heating up your website’s search engine optimization and marketing results.
The page title is a very important on-page SEO factor. Whatever text you place in the title tag will appear in the reverse bar of someone’s browser when they view the web page. For instance, within the title tag of this page that you are reading is this text:
5 Tips For Creating Perfect Page Titles
The title is used by the major search engines as the most important piece of information available in order to help them determine the topic of your page, and thus to determine the ranking of your page in their search results. The title is actually the link you click in the search engine results after conducting a query, so it’s important to use Calls-to-Action as well.
It’s rare to rank highly for a primary term (2-3 words) without that term being part of the page title. The perfect title will meet the 5 technical guidelines explored below:
- All titles should be typed in Title Case (or Proper Case). This is the most often overlooked error we’ve found when using the web. By the way, your headers should be using Title Case as well. There are exceptions to the Title Case or Proper Case rule. In the case of FAQ pages, it is allowable to use the original question as the title to the page. In that case, title case is not necessary.
- For business websites marketing/selling products and services, titles should be written to clearly indicate what specifically is available on the page. If you’re selling sneakers on your site, you should use unique keyphrases in the page title that are specific to the product. For example, high-top basketball sneakers, low-top tennis sneakers, and wide/narrow sneakers.
- Every page must have a unique title. Do not put the same title on every page of your website or duplicate titles (be careful when copying a page to create a new page). Search engines can actually penalize you for repetitive page titles by showing your website’s results further down, so be sure to keep them relevant and unique.
- The title must be able to stand on its own and clearly communicate the contents of the page to the reader. You must give the reader context. A title like “Home” or “About Us” when displayed in search results or bookmarks tells the reader nothing about the contents of the page. Remember, the reader is simply seeing a list of titles. When a visitor bookmarks your site or adds your site to their favorites menu, the title of your page becomes the title of their bookmark. Think about your own bookmarks. How many times have you had to edit the titles so that you would know what your bookmark contained?
- Home page titles present unique requirements. The home page introduces your organization and is almost always your best contender in a search engine optimization contest. Home page titles should clearly indicate what is available on the page, AND for the purpose of web credibility they should clearly indicate what organization is represented on the page. In other words, you need to include the name of your organization in the title tag of your home page! Not doing so can significantly lower your Web credibility.
What other things have you done to make your page titles stand out? Let us know in the comments below.