The simple title tag that appears in search results can have a huge impact on your site traffic and click-through rate. This small character string of text should always be carefully thought out and optimized to get the attention of searchers.

Interestingly, if you have attention grabbing title tags and your click through rate increases, in some circumstances your rank will improve as well. Bonus! The humble title tag is your first impression to searchers and here are the best tips to incorporate into your SEO strategy that have been proven to resonate with users.

Questions

A great way to spark interest is by using questions in your title tag. For example, if you are an SEO company and your content subject is ‘SEO Marketing,’ turning your keyword into the form of a question such as ‘What Are the Best SEO Marketing Strategies’ creates curiosity and gives people an incentive to click and find out.

Length

The optimal length for a title tag is 50-60 characters. If it is too short, like ‘SEO Marketing’, the title is too broad for the average searcher and does not provide enough details. When made more descriptive and specific, you can quickly generate interest. Try also incorporating other top keywords by using a keyword research tool to see what are the most popular phrases that people are using when they search for ‘SEO Marketing.’ If you find something that matches what your content is about, use it to create an eye-catching title tag.

Dates

Using dates is another proven method that attracts visitors. Instead of using ‘SEO Marketing’ try incorporating a date into the title such as ‘Best SEO Marketing Tips for 2017.’ This helps position your subject matter as being current and relevant.

Numbers

Our brains are designed to scan for information and locate something that stands out and is specific. This is referred to as a cognitive bias and numbers are a great way to take advantage of it. Instead of saying ‘Ten Top SEO Marketing Tips’ use ‘10 Top SEO Marketing Tips.’

Action Words

Words help direct people and using action verbs in your title will get searchers clicking. Think of these as a modified call to action, in a less direct way. Incorporate action words like:

  • Find
  • Download
  • Listen
  • Watch
  • Learn
  • Buy
  • Search

Synonyms and Variants

You need to research how users are searching for a particular keyword. Sometimes the results may not be what you expected and by using a variant of your term, you can capture more impressions and clicks. For example, if your focus keyword is ‘cheap insurance’ you may find that a more popular search term is ‘low-cost insurance’ or ‘affordable insurance.’ You can try to use several variants within the title tag so that it is optimized for more than one search phrase, such as ‘Low-Cost Insurance & Cheap Insurance: What is the Difference?’

It is also important to tweak your title tags as part of your SEO plan. If your website is currently ranked on the first page of Google, try modifying your title tag and measure to see if your click through rate increases as a result. Keep in mind that the update is not instant, it usually takes Google one to two weeks to re-crawl the site and adjusts the SERP display.

In the end, when writing title tags you should be thinking of what will motivate a user to click. Avoid spammy keyword stuffed titles and instead opt for a keyword-rich description that is engaging and enticing. Always write it for the user and not the search engine – after all a search engine is not what is clicking on your site and making a purchase.

To learn more about what you can do to get the most out of your SEO, get a free SEO analysis today.