Learn how great titles and meta description can easily outperform competing sites, even when outranked.
Bigger Than Just SEO
Titles, URLs and meta descriptions have an immense impact on how many people click through to your website when you show up in search results.
When writing a page title, make sure that it is compelling and stands out from other results for that keyword phrase. Also be sure that it communicates what the visitor will get from visiting the webpage, and how it will solve one of their important problems.
As a general rule, try to focus more on writing a great headline than starting the titles with keywords.
Do not try to stuff additional keyword phrases into the title at the expense of making it less compelling to potential visitors. Remember that the goal is to have a high search engine ranking with a good click-through rate.
When you are writing titles make sure to keep them to seventy characters or less. Most search engines only include the first 7 characters in the results displayed.
If you are using a content management system (CMS) such as WordPress, it will most likely provide the ability to modify individual links and the overall default URL structure. To improve search engine ranking you will want to use keyword rich URLS. This means that the URL for any given webpage is made up of the main keywords used for that page.
One of the most common approaches to search engine optimized URLs is to make them match the title of the webpage. However, it is important to note that you will want to drop the non-essence connecting words from the title. Words like “the,” “and” and “to” do not contain relevant keywords, as well as increase the complexity and length of a URL.
When crafting keyword-rich URLs, we recommend that you use hyphens between the words in your URL. This is one of many search engine friendly URL practices that also serves to improve the readability of the URL.
Lots of people remember URLs or tell friends about a website by sharing the URL with them. If your URL is optimized for keywords, as well as easy to read, ranking and direct visits should improve.
Meta descriptions are displayed with your title and URL in search engine results. With most search engines accepting up to 16 characters, meta descriptions can have a big impact on click-through rates and overall ranking.
Just like with titles and URLs, make sure to write compelling meta descriptions over just using the main keyword phrases. However, make sure to craft a persuasive description that drives click-through rates over stuffing additional keywords. If you make sure to include a call to action in the description, and communicate the value a visitor will receive from visiting, you can expect to receive a high click-through rate.
For more keyword and SEO advice, check out the Choosing Keywords for SEO series.