Title Tag Optimization Tutorial

Title Tag

The title tag is one of the oldest attributes there is to a webpage’s layout. Title Tags have been existent since websites came to being. Title tags are also one of the most important attributes that you will ever get to use in your on site optimization. This is a Tutorial to Title Tags.

As a user, you see the title tag in the top-leftmost part of your internet browser. It is also used in the search engine results page as indicated in the illustration:

Title Tag SERP

It doesn’t take a genius to create a title tag. You can always see how title tags are created in the source code of an internet browser. For example, if you’re using firefox, type in CTR+U and you’ll see the source code of this page. Press CTR+F and look for <title> and you immediately see the title I used for this entry.

I would say title tags have a very valuable usage. It holds really good weight as an on site optimization factor – giving you a good foundation for your desired keyword, it also lets users know what your page is all about in the search engines and in your website itself. Don’t take the title tag for granted. But don’t stuff in too much of your keywords in it too.

Title Tag browser

Count your words

The title tag is good for 70 characters. More than that, and the search engines will show an ellipsis (…) to indicate that the excess characters in the title tag has not been included anymore.

It is also advised that the keywords in the title tag should be found in the body of the content for a higher rank. It would be great if your title tag is also an on-page H1 title tag. For example: This article’s H1 title is the same as the page’s title tag (Title tag optimization guide).

Title Tag Screenshot

The Important Things go First

Another good strategy for the title tag is that you should place the keywords that you want to rank for in front. Put it as the first words of your 70 character title tag – this way, they would be more helpful for ranking and they would have better impact on a user as a relevant result.

Brand Leveraging

You can optimize your title tags for branding as well. As you can see, I use “SEO in simple terms” as my brand because that’s what this blog is all about. I help people understand SEO in simple, easy to understand ways. I don’t get technical, but if and when I do, I explicitly outline every step and every shortcut to it. Putting your brand in the title tag leverages your brand both in the SERPs and in your website. And that’s a good thing.

SEO Hacker Title Tag

Create Compelling Headlines

A great title is what it is – great. It should attract people to click the moment that they see it in the SERPs. It should compel them to read what your article is all about because they were lured in by your title. People don’t read your body unless they like your title. Statistics say that you have 2 seconds for people to shrug off what you have to say because you did not intrigue them with your title.

People are emotional beings. Whether they are male or female, their decision making abilities are impacted by their emotional pull. You have to capitalize on that and make your title alluring to what tugs people emotionally. The title tag is the first thing people will see in the SERPs about your website/webpage. Make it good so that you will have a positive first impression.

Tips for Keeps: Stick to the basic rules here about title tags and a big chunk of your on site optimization would already have been solved.

This entry is part of the SEO Hacker School series: Complete On Site Optimization Tutorial

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  • With my experience i would recur using your main keyword in title tag is very important and would defintely improve your search querry

  • Hello, could this practice should be still be followed. We know that google has changed their algorithm..what can you say about that??

    • Hello Algie,
      Yes I think that title tags still hold good weight in light of your on-site optimization. Google has updated their algorithm against content farms. That has almost nothing to do with this entry. Check out the Google Panda update entries to know more about what I have to say regarding the algorithm update.

  • Hi Sean! It seems that xrumer profiles was also guarded by google…he he he..although it is was used by many SEO many sites owner are upset because their presence in SERP is gone… :P

    • Really?
      I don’t use xrumer – and I honestly haven’t heard of it. Will check it out. I’m sure a lot of people found the new update sucky – but it’s for the better.

  • Title tag must be optimized as title and excerpt should contain the most keywords..

  • well for me , title tag really matters and its up to us on how we create our title tag that will be the most relevant to our site. :) by the way Sean have you heard about the SEnuke? or have you ever tried to use that? if does is it ok? i mean does SEnuke do a lot better than to any other SEO software out there? thanks..:)

    • Hey Rosemae,
      Yes I’ve heard of SEONuke – good feedbacks too. My take on it is that, if it’s a software (and I did try to look at how it works on a free-trial basis) it helps you artificially. I personally don’t recommend it. I don’t really like SEO automation tools because there’s a certain amount of risk tied to it. Better stick to white hat or a bit of grey if you could.

  • Hi, Sean.
    For those people that just started (like myself) it’s a very productive article. I understand what you mean and it’s time to put it in prectice.
    Maybe you can take a look at my website and give some advices or tips.
    Thank you so much for this website and all your “sharings”

    • Hey Gerardo,
      I’m glad you found this article helpful to you. And yes do apply it and see how it turns out for you. It’s my pleasure and privilege to share :)

  • Is it ok for SEO if the title tag is dynamic? Ie if the title chages once a week.

    1. 51 Green Mugs for Sale In Local Market

    2. 72 Green Mugs for Sale In Local Market

    3. 93 Green Mugs for Sale In Local Market

    • Nope. And I know that would be found out easier nowadays – with Rankbrain doing it’s machine learning and all.