Page titles, the most important on page optimisation

It is undeniable that page titles are the most important on page optimisation as well as the easiest to implement. Unfortunately, a lot of webmasters tend to forget the existent of such a tag in their html, hence completely forgetting to alter it to something other than the dreaded default “Untitled”.

Fortunately, the majority of web masters give a little love to their page titles by changing them from the default to their website name / description. This may be good on the homepage of the website, however having identical page titles throughout the website will trigger negative filters on search engines that ultimately puts your website in a lower ranking than your competitors. The reason behind this is that search engines (Google in particular) believes that if your page title is the same, then your page content is probably the same.

Now we all know what happens when Google believes that your pages are identical, they start penalizing you and throwing your pages in supplementary (aka, right off the face of the earth). To prevent this from happening, all you really need to do is give your page titles a little love, give it the attention it needs by changing them to reflect what the page is about.

Remember to use the keywords you are trying to target on your page title and treat it like a sales pitch where possible. Remember that Google uses your page title as the anchor text on the SERPs, it is your sales copy on Google and your first point of contact with potential visitors. It is also extremely important as Google tend to display results with the searched keywords in the page title.

google_screenie_money.jpg

As you can see, a search for “Making Money Online” brings back results with websites which has page titles that match the keywords I searched for. This is what makes Page Titles one of the most important on page optimisation technique you can easily apply. Ofcourse, Google also takes into consideration a whole host of of other factors into consideration whilst ranking a page of a website, however doing this will take you one step closer to better rankings.

Tips on writing good Page Titles

  • Use the main keywords you are trying to target for that specific page
  • Keep it to one specific topic where possible
  • Brand it by having your abbreviated website name at the end of the title – eg “Some keyword targeted title here – Company name here
  • Keep your page title within 66 characters if you are trying to target Google and 120 characters if you wish to target Yahoo as well. These are their internal limits, which is not set by me.
  • Write the title like a sales copy, and pretend you are pitching to a potential customer by using only 66 characters (or 120 for yahoo) . If need be, read your competitor’s link to see how they do it, and if they are ahead in traffic wise, emulate them.
  • Take note of what paid advertisers write, they aim at getting extremely good ROI by writing near perfect sales copy within their title and body description. As they pay for their ads, they tend to care a lot more about what they write and fine tune it for the best results.
  • Give each and every page on your website a different page titles to avoid duplicate content filter
  • Attract attention to your title by adding “*” and “(“, “)” around it. Assuming you don’t use up your 66 character limit, you can do the following to attract attention – **Something something title** – or – (I have a secret something).

Remember, this is the same as marketing offline, take in the same marketing concepts and apply it to your title. Now go and make create page titles, by spreading this knowledge, I hope that the the SERPs will contain more useful information making my searches for certain niches a lot more efficient and easier.

4 comments:

  1. Al, 18. April 2009, 23:30

    Hi Just found ur blog. I launched my site about a year ago with some success getting traffic. Im new at SEO n HTML (no experience) and Im trying different words in my page titles. Thanks for the “Tip” about same words on pages. I am changing page titles as you suggest excited and waiting for results. I have a problem with a company having a similar name (1 letter off). When a user searches for us their name appears before ours. Google beleives our name is spelled incorrectly. Any ideas, Ive already tried talking with the other company and all they said was thanks for getting them exposure. BTW Im in East Los Angeles, Southern California

     
  2.  

    […] to the fact that I am actually blogging again. Many of my old entries, such as my post on SEO Page Titles, Competitive Analysis and even How to restart your iPod are picking up traffic again as Google […]

     
  3. Francis Lee, 21. April 2009, 17:48

    Believe it or not, this is a very common problem and I have a few clients who has a very similar problem. From my understanding, Google is likely giving the other website a boost in rankings due to the age of their Domain giving them extra credibility. As your website is new, it may take a little more time for your website to rank about their website. Your rankings will improve as you get more links and build quality content (which in turn gets you more links). Its cliche but thats the best and fastest way to get higher rankings.

     
  4. jacksan, 4. August 2009, 16:59

    Thanks for the helpful info! You have provided worthy stuff for on-page optimization and your every word has a important meaning for understand. perfect information very detailed

     

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