The Art of Writing Effective Title Tags
One of the most basic SEO practices that can go a long way in helping your site gain in Search Engine Rankings and add validity is the use of effective title tags. Chances are, one of the first things you learned about SEO was how to write a title tag, and then you quickly moved onto more advanced practices but we're encouraging you to take a step back. Go back to the basics and hone in on your title tag writing skills.
The first thing to remember is that every page on your site needs to have a unique title tag. Next, consider the character length. It is generally suggested that title tags contain around 65 characters (with spaces). Often, Google will only display about 66 characters and everything after that is cut off and the tag will end with (…). At times, additional characters will be displayed depending on the search query and how relevant Google feels the site and tags are.
Make sure to place your target keywords at the beginning, middle and end of the title tag, as long as they don’t come off as spammy. Spammy title tags are those with nothing but back to back keywords with no discernible meaning. Example: Dallas Used Cheap Bikes | Dallas Cheap Used Bikes | Cheap Bikes Dallas.
If your company is a location-based business, make sure you incorporate the city you are targeting along with the keyword phrase. Use modifiers such as ‘Luxury’ or ‘Boutique’ if they describe your business well and try to fit keyword phrases right next to each other. For example, if you’re a Lawn Mowing Service in Dallas, Texas then you will want those words to be next to each other. Dallas Texas Lawn Mowing Service is better than Lawn Mowing Service Located in Dallas, Texas. Both of these examples could be used within Title Tags, but the first one is stronger than the second.
Always remember to incorporate your brand or business name in every title tag. This will add validity to your site and signals to the searcher that this site is the official site of your business. If you don’t feel that your brand name is very strong, don’t just leave it out, it will build relevance over time. Consumers love brands and are more likely to click on titles that contain brand names.
Lastly, I suggest using the “Pipe” character | to divide keyword phrases. This helps the searcher recognize where the phrase break is and prevents him or her from reading your tag as one weird run-on sentences. This is not a rule by any means, and many talented SEOs use commas or hyphens instead, but the pipes look nicer in my opinion. Here’s an example of how these characters can break up a phrase and your company name: Dallas Texas Lawn Service | Gus Johnson Mowers Inc.
Now that you have a better understanding of how to implement title tags, the next step to Search Engine Optimization is to create Meta Descriptions. I will give full detail of creating meta descriptions on the next blog post.