Optimising Page Titles
Page Titles and Meta Tag Optimisation
Linda from ready4life.co.uk, who offers life skill training courses for young adults, writes: I am working on optimising my page titles and meta tags, and after looking at the title tags on your pages and reading several articles on how to choose keywords to use in my page titles and meta tags, I’m not confident that I’ve got it right yet. At present it is “Courses and Workshops for Young Adults, building the confidence to succeed”. Can you offer any pointers?
Thanks for writing Linda. It’s serendipity that you should write at the moment, as I intended to write an article on optimising head tags today, following on from yesterday’s article on CSS Divisional Layers instead of tables.
Optimising Page Titles Advice
When putting together Page titles, use only words that people will type into a search engine to find your service and ensure those words appear on the page that they are attached to. For example, in the page title for this page, I have used the search term, Optimising page titles, because I want this article to be found for that key term.
If the term, or the words did not appear on the page, as well as the page title, the effectiveness would be reduced to the point that it would be a waste of time using it. I have therefor used the key term as an H2 tag in this paragraph, and the words and the keyphrase also appear on the page several times.
Ideally, your page title should be 72 characters or under, but if you must go over that figure, try not to exceed 75 characters, including spaces.
Your example: Courses and Workshops for Young Adults, building the confidence to succeed”, includes words and phrases that will rarely be entered into a search engine search box, by people looking for your services.
I would suggest that you change it to something like:
Summer life skills training course Cambridge, young adults, teenager skills
Use the same content in all of the head tags.
Then rewrite your index page to ensure that these keyterms feature somewhere in the content.
Optimising Meta Tags Tips
The important meta tags are the title and the description tag. The keyword and meta title are rarely used by search engines these days, but we include them as best practice, (and the search engines could change their minds and start using them again in the future!) The description Meta Tag can be longer than your Page Title, but for now, use the same keyword string for each tag.
Once you have optimised your page titles and meta tags on your index page, go through the site, a page at a time and individually optimise the head tags and content on your other pages ensuring that the individual page content matches the Page Title that you have crafted You should aim at less than a handful of keyphrases on each page of your website.
Thanks again for your question Linda, I hope that this advice has been of some use to you. Good luck with your venture.
It was my intention to offer tips on optimising Page Content today, as well, but I have run out of time, so I’ll publish those tips tomorrow. In the meantime, if you have any comments or questions, please don’t hesitate to get in touch.