Why Bother With Web Page Titles?

The simple answer to the question “Why Bother With Web Page Titles?” is because they are probably the single most important element on your pages if you want to get traffic from the search engines.

Web page titlesTake a look at the image on the right – which page title would you click on? Which one is most likely to give you help with your web page titles?

My guess is that you chose one of the first two links. The third one looks a bit techy but would probably also do the job. As for the 4th and 5th ones, I’m pretty sure you’d scroll right past them.

Your web page titles are your headlines

As far as the search results go, that’s true.

Google will bold the keywords you searched for so that you’ve got an “at a glance” affirmation that they delivered the results you were looking for.

After that, it’s your choice which web page title you’ll click on first.

If Google and the site owner have done their job well, it’s the first title. If it’s not that (and assuming you’re not clicking on the sponsored results) then one of the next couple will likely do the job.

So you need to pay attention to your web page titles.

And, since – short of banning the search engines from your site – you can’t control which page(s) from your site show up in the search results, this applies to every single page on your website that isn’t specifically blocked in your robots.txt file.

Treat every single one of your web page titles as special. Because they have the potential of being found in the search results. Maybe not for a keyword phrase you’re specifically targeting but they could appear on someone’s search results.

And when that happens, you want your web page titles to have maximum impact so you increase their chance of getting clicked on.

You’ve got approximately 65 characters to play with.

Any more than that and the search engines will cut your title off at the nearest word less than that number of characters and put in an ellipsis (these three full stops …) to show what’s happened.

It follows that if your web page titles are likely to end up longer than 65 characters for whatever reason, your most important keywords should be in that first section.

Because computers know that in the Western world we read from left to right, they’ve also been taught that words closer to the start of your web page titles are more important than ones found later on.

So keep that in mind when you’re crafting your web page titles!