There is often a tug of war going on in the battle between optimizing your SEO title tags and the need to craft a killer headline that gets massive amounts of clicks. This is a genuine concern, and often the answer lies in what your main objective is for the page in the first place.
It’s important to know that you need both title tags and headlines, right? While you need it to rank well in search, you also need the headline to entice as many clicks as possible. Each is important, but is there a way to feed Google and still attract the hungry hordes?
Let’s look at each, and find out if there’s way to satisfy the needs of both sufficiently.
What makes a good SEO title tag?
The properly SEO’d title tag will be around 64 characters, and also have the page’s primary keyword near the beginning if possible. That’s not a lot of space to work with, so we’ve got work to do right from the start.
What’s also important to Google these days is the intent of the search query. What’s the searcher actually searching for? Google is getting better and better at reading this, and you need to write with this in mind.
It’s fine if you can squeeze in another keyword without it becoming unreadable, but your words will need to reflect what the searcher has in mind.
What makes a good page headline?
Conversely, your page headline has to entice the reader to read on, to yearn for more information. A lot of great headlines will invoke curiosity, promise solutions, and inject emotions.
“How to write a novel in 30 days and stay married.” This title make a bold promise, has a time element and gets a smile. (From those of us who are married)
Making the Two become One
Many times it’s a decision you have to make: is this piece designed to rank well for the ages, or is it something that you may be using socially, or driving paid traffic to. It’s not that you can’t have both, but sometimes the intersect between SEO and enticing titles is quite small. Knowing your purpose for the piece can help you decide which route to take.