How to Write a Better Web Page Title

Titles are everywhere. Some people are defined by titles, some people loathe titles, and others like giving titles. Why do we do this? With so much information getting processed by our minds everyday, we need a way to categorize these groups of associated content in a quick referencing way.

This is the same methodology a search engine applies when it crawls a page. When you title a page, you are telling a search engine or user what the page is supposed to be about. We've all seen the one sentence summaries of television shows on the T.V. Guide. It allows for quick referencing and decision making by telling us what the show is going to be about.

This is part of the reason why naming your page titles is so critical to getting your site ranked. I can't tell you how many times I have seen a site that had one of the following two titles throughout the entire site:"untitled" or "company name".

While having the company name on all the pages could be a potential branding strategy, chances are, most visitors to your site don't know your brand name yet and are looking for the product or service that you're selling. You could incorporate the company name into the title, but it should be placed after the main message you want to convey about that particular page.

Every page should have a unique title. While you may have a subject that needs to be explained over a few pages, you should use the page title as an index of information for the reader. Sites that sell multiple products should have a unique title for every product. If you can't make the time to make each page stand out, why would you expect that page to ever appear in a search engine?

If possible, you should try to place your keywords in the title, since this will help the search engine determine where your page should be ranked. Remember, the search engines rank each page individually, that's why it's so important to use proper naming methods.

When you determine which keywords to use, go for a 4 to 6 word title when possible. After 58 characters, the title in the search engine results page will be truncated and will not be visible to the reader. Also, the longer the title, the less weight is given to each word.

The entire time you are conjuring up titles, always keep the reader in mind first. While some phrases may rank well in the search engines, a reader may never enter that phrase and you'll lose that targeted traffic you were trying to reach. Sometimes the phrases work out well for both the user and search engine, and in those cases success is usually quick to follow.

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