Your blog title is the first thing that a reader sees, so it’s important to make sure that it is well-written and catches their attention! Even if you come up with the catchiest title, your audience will never get to see it if you ignore SEO (Search Engine Optimization) – So, how do you optimize SEO friendly blog titles?
Here are some tips to help you understand title tags and blogging best practices so that you can connect with your readers and have a shot at ranking for target terms.
First off, What is a Title Tag?:
A title tag is a piece of HTML code, and it looks like this:
<title>Your Title Goes Here</title>
This code is an HTML tag that specifies the title of the web page and is usually automatically handled by your content management system (CMS). It generally matches the title that is on your page.
The title is the first thing a user generally sees in google and the other search engines when they are considering going to your site.
Best Practices for SEO Friendly Blog Titles
Now that you have an understanding of what a title tag is – let’s dive into the reason you’re still reading this: how to write effective titles tags.
1. Inspire a User to Click
When looking to rank for a keyword, as you rise through the ranks, the search engines give you opportunities to place near the top of the rankings. This is where inspiring a user to click becomes a very important component of ranking.
The search engines are in the business of providing answers to people’s questions. Your job is to write content that answers that user’s question. When a user searches on Google or any other search engine, they look through the list for something that has the best chance of answering their question. Ultimately, you need to inspire that user to click. This means:
- Catch an eye
- Generate interest
- Inspire a user to click
2. Know the type of content
Is your post a factual piece of content? Is it a recap of an event or something timely? Does it answer a specific question a user might be looking for?
All of these factors come into play when determining what your title tag should be. If you are answering a question, you may want that question to be a starting place for your title. Factual piece? Try terms like “guide,” “complete,” “comprehensive.” How about a timely piece of content? Timely content has a short shelf-life; this is where you can try being a bit more edgy and creative with your writing.
3. Know the user’s mindset, what is the keyword intent
Are they researching? Looking to be entertained? In the process of making a purchase decision? Users will more likely click on the title in Google that aligns with the intent of their search.
4. No One Ranks #1 Consistently when Writing SEO Friendly Blog Titles the First Time
You have to evolve your title tag as time goes on. Leverage Google Search Console to see what your Click Through Rate (CTR) when your content is ranked. If you are ranked first, you want to be targeting somewhere between 10-35% CTR (depending on the term). If you are on the first page, but not first, you want to be targeting a CTR of between 3% and 8%. Don’t be afraid to change things, if you are monitoring your site and you have a good SEO foundation you can always roll it back. The key is to keep on learning.
Example title tag modifications:
- Writing Effective Title Tags – Inspiring a User to Click
- Writing Inspiring and Effective Title Tags
- Inspiring a User to Click – Writing Effective Title Tags
- Title Tag Writing – Effective ways to Inspire a user to Click
5. Use Keywords
If SEO is a core focus, you should have a single core keyword that is the main focus, this keyword should be at the beginning of the title, along with any other supporting terms that make sense to include.
Be concise, straight forward, and to the point. Space is limited, 60 characters max. When in doubt, use a preview tool that will give you an idea of how things will look.