SEO title tags are one of the most important aspects of on-page SEO.
When done correctly, they can help improve your website ranking by signaling to Google what your page is about.
In this blog post, we’ll be looking at 9 tips for writing SEO title tags that will help you rank higher. In addition, we’ll be discussing 6 things to avoid if you want to stay out of Google’s penalty box.
Packed with real-world examples and invaluable resources, this blog post will equip you with the know-how to implement these tips and transform your SEO game without delay!
What are SEO title tags?
SEO titles are the title tags that appear in the search engine results pages (SERPs). The title tag is the HTML element that specifies the title of a web page.
Title tags are meant to give search queries and users a quick snapshot of what your page is about. They should be unique to each page, accurate, and descriptive.
Unfortunately, many website owners don’t put enough thought into their title tags, resulting in SEO titles that are either inaccurate or unhelpful. This can lead to a lower website ranking, as Google may view your site as being less relevant to a user’s search query.
Now that you know what SEO titles are and why they matter, it’s time to learn how to write them.
9 tips to make your title tags stand out
There are many factors to consider when writing a good title tag. If you want your title tags to be both SEO-friendly and eye-catching, follow these tips:
1. Make your title tag descriptive and keyword-rich
One of the most important things to keep in mind when writing SEO titles is to make sure that they are both descriptive and keyword-rich.
Your title tags should accurately describe what your web page is about so that search engine crawlers can understand it. At the same time, you want to include relevant keywords so that you can improve your website ranking for those terms.
For example, let’s say you have a blog post about healthy breakfast recipes. A good SEO title for this post might be “Healthy Breakfast Recipes: 50+ Ideas for Quick and nutritious morning meals.”
In this title, we’ve included the keyword “healthy breakfast recipes” as well as other relevant keywords like “quick” and “nutritious.” We’ve also made the title tag descriptive so that users and search engines will know exactly what to expect from the blog post.
2. Include your primary keyword in your title tag
When writing SEO titles, you want to make sure to include your primary keyword. Your primary keyword is the main keyword that you’re targeting for a particular web page or blog post.
The best way to determine your primary keyword is to think about what you want your web page or blog post to be ranked for. What is the main topic that you’re trying to target?
Once you’ve determined your main topic, you can start including relevant keywords in your title tag and other on-page SEO factors. For example, if we go back to our healthy breakfast recipes blog post, the primary keyword might be “healthy breakfast recipes.”
3. Keep your title tags under 70 characters
While there’s no hard and fast rule about the length of SEO titles, it’s generally recommended to keep them under 70 characters.
This is because title tags that are too long can get cut off in the search result, which can cause confusion for users. It can also make your title tag look spammy, which can hurt your website’s ranking.
So, when writing SEO title tags, aim for around 50-60 characters. This will give you enough room to include your primary keyword and other relevant keywords while still keeping your title tag short and sweet.
4. Write with the reader in mind
In addition to keeping search engine crawlers in mind, you also want to write SEO titles that are for the reader. This means making your title tag descriptive and easy to understand.
Remember, your title is often the first thing that people will see when they find your web page or blog post in the SERPs. So, you want to make sure it’s clear and concise so that readers know what they can expect from your content.
A good way to do this is to think about what questions your target audience might have about the topic of your web page or blog post. Then, answer those questions in your title tag.
For example, going back to our healthy breakfast recipes blog post, some questions that our target audience might have include “What are some healthy breakfast recipes?” and “What are some quick and easy breakfast recipes?”
By answering these questions in our SEO title, we can give readers a better idea of what they can expect from our blog post.
5. Use SEO title generator tools
If you’re struggling to come up with SEO titles that are both descriptive and keyword-rich, there are a few tools that can help.
One of the most popular SEO title generator tools is HubSpot’s Blog Topic Generator. All you have to do is enter a few keywords related to your topic, and the tool will generate a list of potential blog post ideas.
Another great tool is Portent’s Content Idea Generator. This tool works similarly to HubSpot’s Blog Topic Generator, but it also gives you a catchy title for your blog post idea.
Both of these tools can give you some great ideas for SEO titles that are both keyword-rich and descriptive.
So, if you’re struggling to come up with SEO titles on your own, definitely give them a try.
6. Use power words
Power words are attention-grabbing words that evoke strong emotions or reactions from the reader. Incorporating power words into your title can make it more enticing, which can lead to increased click-through rates (CTRs) from search engine results pages (SERPs).
Examples of power words include “amazing,” “incredible,” “stunning,” “shocking,” “proven,” and “secret.” By using these words strategically, you can create a more compelling and captivating title that draws readers in.
7. Place your keyword at the beginning of the title
Positioning your primary keyword toward the beginning of your title can improve your SEO ranking.
This is because search engines tend to give more weight to the words that appear at the beginning of the title. By placing your keyword at the front, you’re signaling its importance and relevance to the content.
For example, if your target keyword is “vegan recipes,” an optimized title might be “Vegan Recipes: 30 Delicious and Easy-to-Make Plant-Based Meals.”
8. Utilize numbers and lists
Including numbers and lists in your title can make it more attractive to readers, as people are naturally drawn to structured, easy-to-digest information.
For example, instead of using the title “Effective Time Management Tips,” try “7 Effective Time Management Tips for Busy Professionals.”
9. Leverage emotional language
Leveraging emotional language in your title can have a significant impact on the way readers engage with and respond to your content.
Emotional language taps into the reader’s feelings, making your title more compelling and enticing. By using powerful, emotion-evoking words, you can create a stronger connection with your audience and encourage them to click through to read your content.
Examples of emotional language include words like “jaw-dropping” “life-changing,” or “irresistible.” Including these words in your title not only piques the reader’s curiosity but also makes your content stand out among the competition in search engine results pages (SERPs).
However, it’s essential to use emotional language genuinely and ensure that your content delivers on the promises made in your title to avoid disappointing your readers. That means carrying on visceral language into your content and having a cohesive writing style throughout.
6 things to avoid when creating title tags
While there are a few things you should do when writing SEO titles, there are also a few things you should avoid. These include:
1. Avoid using stop words
When it comes to SEO titles, stop words are words like “a,” “an,” “the,” and “of.” While they’re important in grammar, they don’t actually add any value to your title from an SEO perspective.
In fact, including too many stop words in your title can actually hurt your SEO because it makes your title less focused and keyword-rich.
So, when writing SEO titles, try to avoid using stop words whenever possible. If you absolutely have to use them, make sure they’re toward the end of your title so they don’t take up valuable real estate that could be used for keywords.
2. Avoid using too many special characters
Special characters are symbols like *, &, $, and %. While they can add visual interest to your SEO titles, they don’t actually do anything for your SEO.
In fact, including too many special characters in your title can actually hurt your SEO because it makes your title look spammy and can confuse search engine crawlers.
So, when writing SEO titles, stick to letters and numbers and make sure not to overuse any special characters.
3. Avoid keyword stuffing
Keyword stuffing is the practice of cramming as many keywords into your title as possible in an attempt to improve your SEO title tag. However, this technique is no longer effective and can actually hurt your SEO.
In addition to being ineffective, keyword stuffing can also make your title look spammy and can confuse search engine crawlers. Having the correct keyword density in your posts is important, but be sure to make the title sound natural and not like it was written in a robotic way.
4. Avoid writing clickbait titles
Clickbait is a type of content that’s designed to entice people to click on it without actually providing any valuable information. While clickbait titles can be effective in getting people to click on your content, they don’t actually do anything for your SEO.
In reality, clickbait headlines might harm your SEO since they seldom correspond with the actual content of your blog article. This can lead to people quickly bouncing off of your website, which is something that search engines frown upon.
So, when writing SEO titles, avoid using clickbait tactics and make sure that your title accurately reflects the content of your blog post.
5. Avoid being too long or too short
While there’s no perfect length for an SEO title, you do want to avoid making them too long or too short. Remember, you should aim for 50-60 characters in your title.
If your SEO title is too long, it will be cut off in the search results, which can make it difficult for people to understand what your blog post is about. On the other hand, if your SEO title is too short, it might not be descriptive enough and could end up hurting your SEO.
6. Avoid duplicate title tags
Duplicate title tags can hurt your SEO efforts because search engines may view your content as repetitive or low-quality. Each page on your website should have a unique title that accurately reflects the content of that specific page.
By creating distinct title tags for each page, you signal to search engines that your content is valuable and diverse, which can lead to better rankings in the SERPs.
To identify duplicate title tags, you can use tools like Google Search Console or a dedicated SEO tool like SEMrush. These tools can help you spot and fix any duplicate titles on your website, ensuring that each page has a unique and optimized title tag.
Examples of great page titles
Now that you know what not to do, let’s take a look at some examples of a great page titles and why they work.
Home workout website
For instance, consider a fitness website that published an article about home workout routines. The writer will want to make sure their title tag stands out by creating a unique page title.
By crafting an SEO title such as “10 Best Home Workouts: Burn Fat & Build Muscle Without a Gym,” the website seamlessly integrates relevant keywords like “home workouts,” “burn fat,” and “build muscle” into the title.
This optimized title not only accurately reflects the content but also appeals to readers searching for specific workout solutions. Moreover, the use of a number (10) and the promise of achieving fitness goals without a gym make the title more enticing, increasing click-through rates and boosting the page’s search engine rankings.
Another example is a travel blog that published an article about the best beach destinations in the world.
The title tag “25 Ultimate Beach Vacations: A Bucket List of Paradise Getaways” also includes relevant keywords like “beach vacations” and “bucket list,” making it easily discoverable through search engines. Furthermore, the use of a number and the promise of paradise getaways make this title attractive to readers, increasing engagement with the content.
These examples show how creative titles can be both SEO-friendly and captivating for readers.
The same techniques can be used to create SEO titles for any type of website. Just make sure to avoid keyword stuffing, Clickbait tactics, and duplicate title tags while crafting your perfect SEO title tag as discussed above.
Creating SEO-friendly titles is essential for improving your website ranking and driving organic traffic to your site. By following the tips discussed in this blog post, you can create effective and eye-catching titles that will entice users to click on your content while also providing search engines with the necessary information to rank your pages.
Remember, the key to success is making sure your title tags are descriptive, keyword-rich, and tailored to your target audience. Avoid common pitfalls like keyword stuffing, clickbait titles, and using too many special characters, as these can have a negative impact on your SEO efforts.
By investing time and effort into crafting the perfect page title, you can significantly improve your website’s visibility and achieve higher rankings in search engine results pages. Happy optimizing!
Frequently Asked Questions
What are page titles?
A page title is the name of a web page. It is what appears in the search engine results pages (SERP) as the clickable headline for a given result, and it is also what displays at the top of a browser when someone visits a website.
The title of a web page is important for SEO because it helps search engines understand what the page is about and whether or not it’s relevant to a user’s search query.
It’s also important for users because it can help them decide whether or not to click on a result. A descriptive, keyword-rich title can be the difference between someone clicking on your result or choosing a different title and blog.
What is Google Search Console?
Google Search Console is a free service offered by Google that helps you monitor and troubleshoot your website’s SEO.
It provides you with data about your website’s search traffic, including which keywords are driving traffic to your site and how often your site appears in the search results.
Google Search Console also allows you to submit your website to Google for indexing and track any issues that Google has with your site.
What is a meta description?
A meta description is a brief description of a web page. It is typically between 150-160 characters long and appears under the title in the search engine results pages (SERP).
A meta description are important for SEO because they give search engines additional information about your website. They can also help persuade users to click on your result over another one.
While meta descriptions don’t directly impact your SEO, they are an important part of creating SEO title tags that are both keyword-rich and persuasive.
What is a target keyword vs a primary keyword?
A target keyword is a specific word or phrase that you want your website to rank for in the search results. A primary keyword is a more general word or phrase that describes the main topic of your website.
For example, if you are a real estate agent in Los Angeles, your target keywords might be “real estate agent Los Angeles” or “Los Angeles real estate.” Your primary keyword would be something like “real estate.”
When optimizing your website, it’s crucial to focus on title tag optimization. This includes using your primary and target keywords strategically within your title tags, ensuring each page has a unique and descriptive title. Additionally, it’s important to identify and fix any missing title tags or duplicate title tags on your website.
By doing so, you can improve your website’s visibility in Google’s search results and create a better user experience for your visitors.
What is an HTML title tag?
An HTML title tag is an HTML element that specifies the title of a web page. It appears in the browser tab as well as in the search engine results pages (SERP). It’s important for SEO because it gives search engines additional information about what your page is about.
When creating an HTML title tag, make sure to include your target keyword and keep it under 65 characters. Additionally, make sure to give each page a unique title tag that accurately describes its content. By doing so, you can help Google understand what your page is about and increase your website’s visibility in the search results.