There is one thing that you should learn about search engine optimization as a website owner, and that’s the little power that you have. Most of what determines where your web pages will appear in raking are beyond your control. However, these limitations show the importance of doing your best with the areas that you can control.
As a website owner, you should ensure that you practice on-site page optimization. This is a relatively easy and cheap way to give your site an upper hand over the other websites that don’t bother with that. Together with on-page optimization and met-descriptions, the title tag is one of the most essential on-page ranking factors that you can control.
What’s a title tag?
Now, on a search engine results page, the title is the key part of a website’s listing. The title appears in blue and bigger font than every other detail on the page, and it has a hyperlink back to the site. When it comes to your site, the title appears in the tab on the top of your browser—even though it’s normal for most of it to be trimmed off from view.
A title tag allows you to define what appears in these places in your site’s HTML. Generally, you will need to insert it to the HTML in the header section of the page, and its tag looks like this: <title> Title of Your Page </title>.
When using WordPress with an SEO plugin, you don’t have to insert the HTML since you can add your page’s title tag by filling in the area that’s marked “Title tag” or “Title” in your plugin.
Why are title tags important?
Google’s main objective is to deliver relevant and useful search results. For Google to do that, it must identify all the web pages on the internet, and know what they discuss. The search engine discovers such information by looking at the words on these pages. However, it also emphasizes on particular areas of the page more than others when it comes to determining the contents of the page.
The page’s title tag is one of the parts of a web page that search engine algorithms emphasize when determining what the page is all about. The main reason behind this is that title tags are a simple and short way for web designers to show what’s on the page. Because of this, title tags have become one of the most essential ranking factors for on-page SEO.
However, apart from the role that title tags play in ranking, they are also important for making users click on the link when it appears in their search results. The website’s title is the first thing that they will see—it has a big font, blue in color, and users expect it to give them the primary information that they need about what’s on the web page that is behind the link.
At the end of the day, title tags are not all about boosting rankings, but they are about getting users to click once your page appears in search engine results page—and this is what most website owners care about.
Interestingly, title tags do make lots of difference when it comes to that. A case study conducted by Ahrefs revealed that improving a page’s title tag caused a 37% increase to the page’s web traffic. This shows that you are missing a massive opportunity if you are not optimizing your title tags.
How to write compelling title tags
Here are 5 tips that will assist you to utilize the space provided when writing title tags.
Every page should have a unique title
Since each page on your site is unique, your title tags should also be unique. Therefore, ensure that you customize each page’s title tag for it to accurately describe what is on that page. Here, you need the title tag to tell search engines what that individual web page is about.
In addition to this, creating a clear and accurate title tag will be more useful to any searcher who comes across that page in SERPs.
Pay attention to the characters
All search engines, including Google, normally show 50 to 60 characters of a title tag in their search results before trimming it off. Therefore, you should target for title tags with a maximum of 50 characters. Always make sure that you insert the most descriptive, keywords, or important words at the beginning of the title tag to reduce the possibility of them being cut off.
If you’d like to include your brand name in your title tags—which is a good idea for popular brands—insert it at the end, after the words that describe the contents of the web page.
Include your target keyword, but avoid keyword stuffing on your title tag
Every web page on your website should be able to answer a particular search query or give valuable information that a user will be looking for. Your site will be more valuable and useful to searchers if it appears in search results for the right search term. That is when people are searching for the information that the page provides. Therefore, you need to have a target keyword(s) for every page on your site.
Because search engine’s algorithms use title tags as a primary way of determining the contents of a web page, it’s advisable for you to make sure that you include the primary keyword(s) that you are targeting for that web page. This helps Google to determine whether the page is relevant for people searching for that particular term. However, you should avoid keyword stuffing at all costs.
Describe what’s on the web page
When your page appears in search engines, most people decide whether to click or not depending on your title tag. If they click on the page and then come to a page that doesn’t give them the information that they expected, they will leave that page immediately and search for another page.
Therefore, you should make sure that your title tag provides an accurate description of what users will see when they visit your page. When the content on your page matches the title tag description, your page will have a reduced bounce rate, and users will spend more time on your page. These metrics signal Google that your page is valuable, and it’s offering useful information, which means it should continue ranking high.
Moreover, this creates a better user experience. Your main goal here is your visitors to like what they see on your page, and come back for more information. However, this is less likely to happen in case your title tag isn’t clear.
Let the users know what’s the page is offering
Well, you will not have enough space to do this, but use it to let people know what makes your page great and betters from all other pages. Mostly, you can accomplish this by inserting an adjective before the descriptive keyword or an additional description after the keyword. For articles and blog posts, a good title tag will look like a good headline, which means you can use the headline that you’ve already written.
Ensure that you think about the most valuable or important thing on your page that your target audience will like. Your title tag should show stress the value the web page provides to your target audience.
Title tags are short but very powerful
Although title tags are short, they are powerful and deceptively simple parts of search engine optimization. However, since they don’t need you to write much, never assume that they are something that you should treat as simple and quick to do. Always take your time when choosing the best words that can signal Google what the web page is all about, and also let people understand the value of the page. A good title tag should do both at once. Getting your title tag right can boost your rankings, as well as increase your CTR.