SEO Page Titles – Why The Fuss?

Marketers find fault with the “wrong” page titles in search engine optimization.

I don’t understand why.

If your company sells a product – let’s call it baby clothing – you have a few choices for your page title.

1. Title:
baby clothing, baby clothing, baby clothing, baby clothing

Absolutely awful and search engine spamming by most any measure.

2. Title:
baby clothing

Near perfect. And yet marketers tear apart a simple title tag because it lacks a call to action.

But wait, what if the META description said:
baby clothing from Baby Clothing XYZ-Universe Co., offering free shipping through April 30, 2006.

3. Title:
Baby Clothing – get free shipping from Baby Clothing XYZ-Universe Co.

Marketers love #3 because it includes the search term, incentive and company name.

However, there is a big problem.

With #2, “baby clothing,” it may rank in the top 10 on Google. Once you add all of those extra words, there is a good chance the ranking will slip because of the way all of the words are factored by the search engines.

So how do you solve the problem of competing interests – getting that high ranking and giving visitors a reason to click?

The META description with #2 may not be the perfect solution because descriptions can get reduced with the results that appear, or ignored while a search engine uses actual page content for the description appearing with the results.

With that in mind, it’s best to get the ranking first and then worry about adding an offer.

Try to get a top 10 ranking with this title:

baby clothing


baby clothing from Baby Clothing XYZ-Universe Co.

Showcasing “baby clothing” twice in the title tag may pay off for the ranking.

Take the time to test different titles with different offers over time while closely monitoring the rankings. Every character is critical, but titles could be:

baby clothing – save 25%
baby clothing – deep discounts
baby clothing – deep discounts on baby clothing
baby clothing – get free shipping
baby clothing – save 25% at Baby Clothing XYZ-Universe Co.

Remember, you need the rankings before anything else. If you can’t be found on the search engines, what difference does your special offer make?

One Response to SEO Page Titles – Why The Fuss?

  1. Jamie says:

    Great point. I am always amazed at some of the titles I come across for clients. I remind them a title should be short and sweet – not a book report. 🙂