Monday, May 29, 2006

Web Page Titles - simply unique and targeted.

It never fails to surprise me to find the following in page titles on search engines like Google:



"Untitled Document"

Have a look here at Google:

Google allintitle "Untitled Document" results

"Results 1 - 10 of about 42,300,000 for allintitle:Untitled Document. (0.42 seconds) "

Why are title tags missing from these pages? Each HTML Document has been left untitled and is missing the opportunity to use keyword phrases to accurately describe the content on the page.

Without relevant keywords in your title tag it is likely a search engine will rank your website on a lower basis. This can then lead to lower levels of traffic. Something you're going to need to avoid if you have a commercial site you want to see doing well on the web!

Based on my own experience and research most search engines seem to prefer between 10 to 15 words in the title tag, uniquely targeted to the great content you have in the page.

Its no point just stuffing the Title tag to the hilt with keywords, as thats considered a spamming attempt and will likely hinder your website's progress.

If you really, really have to have more keywords in the title then ensure those keywords form part of an actual sentence (with a call to action if possible) rather than just a list of keywords. When a searcher see's your title tag on a search engines results page then ensure the tag identifies exactly what it is they are looking for. Together with an obvious call to action this can enhance the clickthrough rate to your website from a search engine's organic results.

When it comes to Google the maximum number of characters displayed in a title tag is 67 (that I have seen on an Amazon result).

Other search engines such as Yahoo and MSN I have not looked currently explored in full but I believe that Yahoo may be upto twice as many characters. (I am not too concerned with Yahoo and MSN as of this moment)

Oh and don't put your company name at the start of the Title Tag UNLESS you have a VERY well known brand name.
Place the important keyword phrases at the beginning of a tag and your company name at the end.

You can get round this if your product name is in your company name already.

I.e. you have a product called Widget X and your company name is Widget X Limited... you get the picture...

Write unique and individual Title tags at the beginning of EVERY page and ensure the keyword phrases used in them are also applicable to the content on your page.

For a good example check out and see where I have crafted unique and individual titles in each web page targetting the actual content I have created on each web page.

To prove a point if you carry out this search on Google

allintitle:business website marketing

At present the All Things Web site sits currently 4th.... this site is new and will not show for this search in the first 10 page with the command allintitle: removed - I'm just waiting for Google's bots to start (I am seeing them in the stats)