Page Titles are one of the simplest attributes that you will manage on your website, however it is crucial that you take the time to optimise them correctly in order to improve your search engine rankings and your click-through-rates from organic search results.
It is surprising how often this attribute is overlooked. Every website out there should have page titles optimised for results. Three important functions for your page titles are as follows:
Search Engine Optimisation
The first and obvious reason to optimise your page titles is for SEO. One of the longest standing attributes that a search engine takes into account is your page title. After conducting the appropriate keyword research and identifying the target terms that you wish to optimise for, you need to ensure that your pages have appropriate titles. This will indicate to the search engine that this is what your page is about. If you combine this title with a relative H1 heading tag on the page, then you are strongly identifying that this is what your page should be ranking for.
Click Through Rates
It is great to rank for a specific term, but as the most predominantly seen aspect of organic search results, it is essential that your page title generates click-throughs from users. By targeting the exact terms that you wish to be seen in the results pages for, you are also identifying to a user that this page is 100% relevant to the term they are searching for. This will in turn increase your click-through rates and website traffic, which will generate more significant results from your SEO activities.
One benefit of page title optimisation is the branding benefits that it can deliver. By including your brand name in your page titles, you can ensure that it is shown in organic search results. The benefit of this is that users will more than likely run multiple searches on a similar topic as they look to find sites that provide what they’re looking for. By including your brand in your page title, a user will come across your brand multiple times in the same way that they might when you are running an outdoor advertising campaign on bus stops or billboards. This positions yourself as an authority on the topic that a user is searching for and will build your brand equity as well as assist in the improvement of click-through rates.
Page titles should be no longer than 65 characters. This will ensure that your complete title will be displayed in most search engines so that you achieve the outcome you are looking for.
Here are some good example formats for your page titles. Once you decide on a format, keep it consistent throughout your site:
- Primary Keyword, Secondary Keyword | Brand Name
- Primary Keyword – Secondary Keyword | Brand Name
- Primary Keyword, Secondary Keyword – Brand Name
Personally I like to use the first format, but either will be of benefit to your site.