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Wednesday, November 24, 2010

How to write blog post titles while keeping SEO in mind

How many times do you happen upon a post written by a fellow blogger whose title makes you wonder what the post will actually end up being about? Note that many times that you do run across these posts, they do not have a high PageRank or get very much traffic unless they have been Dugg, etc. And even if they do, could they get more traffic if their post title was optimized?

When I first starting writing for my blog in March of this year, I didn’t even know what the term SEO meant and hence wrote post titles that would make a seasoned blogger cringe! Even though I have read it over 100 thousand times, it seems that a lot of bloggers out there still don’t understand how important it is to write a good title for each post.

And what’s more baffling is that everyone intrinsically knows how important titles are because each person reads a newspaper on a daily basis. For example, if you were to whip open the New York Times web site right now, the top headline is as follows:

New Stem Cell Method Could Ease Ethical Concerns
Now that title makes sense! It’s also very search engine friendly since it’s short, yet has enough keywords that it would show up in a long tail search. Now consider what you would think if you were to read the following headline:

“Medical Ethics”

If that were the title for the above article, do you think it would be as easily searchable through Google as the first title? HELL NO. And you may read this and laugh and say that “Awww come on man, that’s retarded, that title is not even close to being a short form of the original title, it’s not close at all!” Well I would agree with you, but that’s a major problem with many blog post titles, they have nothing to do with the content!
As a technology blogger myself, I find this issue to be even worse among our niche because most bloggers are writing about software, computers, technology, and other items whose names don’t have anything to do with their ultimate purpose. 

For example, here’s a couple of blog posts that I feel are really bad post titles because they lack keywords, do not describe anything, and are just plain useless to the search engines.

Bad Post Titles

Unlocker for Windows” – This blogger is writing about a piece of software that you can use in Windows to get past errors like “Access is Denied” when trying to delete or move files. Does anyone search on Google for UNLOCKER FOR WINDOWS? Of course not, someone is searching for “cannot move file” and “access is denied”. A better title for this would be “How to unlock a process for access is denied errors in Windows” or something similar. 

“iConcertCal”This article was Dugg, but still who is ever going to find this product with this kind of title? The software monitors your iTunes library and lets you find concerts in your local area. A good title would be “iConcertCal – Find local concerts in your city via your iTunes libarary”.  At least write something!

HeatEatReview” – This is a great site that reviews all kinds of frozen dinners, etc so that you can buy the best stuff from the store. But who the hell is going to search HeatEatReview! Even some simple text after the name of the site will be much better.

Joox.net – Can you guess what this site is all about? No idea? Well obviously since Joox is not even a word! This site allows you to watch some old and new movies in DivX quality. Would it not be better to write something like “Joox.net – Watch Hollywood DivX movies online for free”???
So what is considered a good title? Well, you’ve probably seen most of those already, but I thought I would mention a few anyway.

Good Post Titles

Stage6 – Upload video clips, share, watch, download videos” – This site is similar to the Joox.net site mentioned above, but look at how much more descriptive the title is. It has all the keywords that it wants to rank on included in the title. No one knows what Stage6 means and nor do the search engines!

Photojojo – The best photo tips, DIY projects, and gear in the whole wide world’Can anyone possibly be confused by what this site is all about? Not even a search engine! Good keywords and pretty straight forward.

“Dealing With Website Plagiarism: When Someone Copies Your Blog Content”If someone were to steal your blog content, what would you search for first? Probably something like “blog plagiarism” or “blog content stolen”, etc. This article will probably show up higher since the keywords will match in the title.


So when writing post titles, always try to think from a searchers perspective and what they would type in if they were looking for this product or service. Yes, backlinks and the content of the post matter a lot and I’m not denying that, I’m just saying that if ALL OTHER FACTORS WERE EQUAL, the post with the better title would win out.

Also, I’ve noticed that if someone is not paying attention to writing correct post titles, they are probably also missing important keywords in the body of the content. If you’re not sure what keywords to use, check out keywords tools such as Google’s Adwords tool or Keyword Discovery.

Any comments or thoughts? Post a comment! Thanks! 




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1 comment:

  1. Uploading a video clip is very good practice. My publications with video is more visited than others according to google analytics