On-Page SEO: Website Title Tag

Before meta tags, the more important portion of a website’s header tag is the title element. This defines a web page in one quick glance, which is essential for overall user experience.

The title of a web page is displayed on the topmost part or on the page tab of a browser (Google Chrome in this example). Content management softwares like WordPress automatically formats this useful header element. But if you want to get down and dirty, you may manually edit the HTML document.

<meta name="keywords" content="keyword1, keyword2, keyword3" />
<title>On-Page SEO: Website Title Tag</title>

Title element, aka the “Title Tag”

Optimizing the title tag is an important step when doing on-page SEO because it is the first thing that search engines display in the results page. This is one way of measuring a web page’s relevancy to the search keyword.

Searched for keywords are shown in bold (or strong) font in the SERPs, in this case “places to get social traffic”:

Without a title, search engines will not have anything to display. Well, technically the browser will display “Untitled Document” as a default, but nobody’s gonna want to click on something that seems to lack information. Besides, the webpage may not even make it to the results even at page 100!

SEO-friendly title

A well-written title can do wonders to a website’s search engine ranking and click-through rate. As a rule of thumb, it should be concise but still carries your target keywords.

Sure, it would be fun to create vague titles like “Ink stabbers in LA” but from the SEO point of view, “Tattoo artists in Los Angeles” would be more appropriate because the terms in it are more likely to be used in search engines.

Keywords in the title tag

Many SEO experts advise to place keywords close together within the beginning of the title phrase. This keyword positioning technique helps search engine crawlers to easily pick up your target keywords.

Doing multiple keyword combinations may also work, but don’t overdo it because the focus will be lost.

So, If I’m going for the keywords “Tattoo artists Los Angeles”, the title “List of Tattoo artists with a studio in downtown Los Angeles” could be written better as “Tattoo artists in Los Angeles area, listed”

Doing just the keywords in themselves won’t do because the whole phrase wouldn’t make sense. We want to create a title that is simple, yet informative at the same time.

Branding in the title

There only one thing you need to keep in mind when faced with a decision of branding versus keyword. If you think users will search for your brand (are you popular enough in your field?), then go ahead and position your brand name at the start of the web page title. Otherwise, you’re better off with using well-researched keywords in there.

Creating the perfect web page title requires a little bit of attention but the effort is worth it. This is one of those website SEO techniques you should pass on.

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