In the last week several readers requested to write an article about how to create good titles and snippets in search results. They said that we have searched this topic on search engines, but most of the articles was not clear as they want to be. So therefore, we decided to clear this issue of our respected audience and prepare a good article about this topic.
Most of the peoples think that titles tags are very straightforward. But the reality is, titles have more potential in SEO perspective than most people realize it. It is, therefore, there is no way you can mess them up. In this article, we’ll cover everything that you need to know about good SEO title and Snippet in search results. We’ll also run you through a few-step process for creating good titles & snippet that work every time in search results.
Remember that Google’s generation of page titles & description (collectively called “Snippet”) is totally automated process and take into account both the content of a page as well as references to it that appear on the web. It is, therefore, necessary that the goal of the snippet & title should be to represent and describe in a best way each result and also explain how it relates to the queries of users.
To get information about the title page and description of a website, Google uses different sources of information, which consist of descriptive information in the title and Meta tags for each page. Google says that for this purpose “we may use publicly available necessary information, or create rich results that are based on markup on the page.
Here we are going to clear one point that Google does not manually change any page or post titles or snippets for each and every individual sites. Google is trying and working to make the title and snippets as more relevant as possible. If you do not create your title and snippet then Google automatically take this information from the important parts of your content and create them. However, you can also help to improve the quality of the title and snippet shown for your pages. What you need is just to follow the easy, simple and general guidelines provided below.
How to Create descriptive page titles
In this section of blog post we will focus on how to create descriptive page titles for your site. Titles are playing a key role in giving users a quick understandings into the content of a result and why it is related to their questions. You may have searched for somethings on Google and when type your search query and then press the enter button. You will see the results with different titles and basic information provided. In fact, it is the content title who often provide the basic information and that is used to decide which results to click on.
It is, therefore, very necessary to use high-quality titles on your web pages. It is well accepted that when your title is attractive and of high-quality it will attract more peoples to click on your result pages. In the below paragraphs we have provided some basic tips for creating and managing your titles.
Page Title Should be Descriptive & Concise
It is very important that your page title should be descriptive and concise. A descriptive and concise page title will largely help to attract more audience and then get more organic traffic. People often click on those page titles which are concise and descriptive. We also suggest to avoid vague descriptors such as “Home” for your site hope page. In the same way, you have to avoid using words like “Profile” just for using a profile of a specific person. Instead of using these simple words you have to choose more attractive words that have potential of attracting your visitors. To add quality to your page title, it is necessary that you also have to avoid unnecessary wordy and long titles. Those page titles which are long and verbose, will likely be shorten when they are shown up in the search results.
Every Page Title Must be Specified In The <title> tag
For higher rankings in search engines you have to make it sure that every page on your blog or website has a title and that the page title must be specified in the <title> tag. This kind of practice can be easily accomplished in an easy in a simple blog or site. However, if you are running a large site there are more chances that you may have forgotten a title somewhere. But you have to don’t worry about that because a very useful tool of Google called HTML Suggestions page in Google Search Console will help you and list you all the missing or potentially problematic <title> tags on your site. With the help of this page you can identify all the missing title tags. Furthermore, it will also help you to find out others that can create problems for your site.
Keyword Stuffing Must be Avoided
While creating your page titles you must care about and avoid keyword stuffing. Keyword stuffing is the practice of using keywords multiple times in a content, for the purpose of getting higher ranking in search engines. During this practice the webpage is loaded with keywords with the purpose of attempting to manipulate a website ranking in search engines like Google and Bing. Keyword stuffing is sometimes helpful to have a few descriptive words in the title. However, there is no valid reason of using the same terms or phrases to be appeared again and again.
Most often these keywords appear in a list or group. Similarly, they also appear out of context and not in a natural flow. Remember that filling site or blog pages with keywords or numbers creates very bad and negative user experience. Keyword stuffing practice can also harm your site ranking in Google search engine. We therefore advise to always focus on creating information-rich and useful content. While creating your content you have to make sure to use keywords appropriately and in content.
Examples of keyword stuffing
Google consider the following practice as keyword stuffing,
If you fill a page with a list of phone number without any substantial added value.
Using the same words or phrases again and again so that it looks and sounds unnatural. Let suppose, we deals in Solar Fans. Our product of Solar Fans are made of latest technology. If you want to buy Solar Fans, you can contact our Solar Fans products specialist at email@example.com
In the above example, it is trying to fill the content with the keyword solar fans. And this keyword is used again and again to rank higher ranking in search engines. But suck kind of practice is harmful for your business and website as well. Most popular search engines, especially Google, consider this kind of keyword stuffing practice as spam activity.
Blocks of text that are listing states & cities a web page is trying to rank for.
Also Avoid Repeated or Boilerplate Page Titles
It is another important SEO factor that should be followed. If you want to get higher ranking in search engines then your page title and snippet must avoid repeated or boilerplate titles. For this purpose it is very necessary that each page on your site must have distinctive and descriptive titles.
If you use distinctive and descriptive page title for every page on your site will make it possible for your users to distinguish one page from another. On the other hand, if you use the same title for every page on a e-Commerce website like “Cheap Clothes For Sale”, so this kind of titles will make it impossible for users to distinguish one page from another.
While creating your page title and snippet you should also take into consideration that your page title is not too much long that vary by only a single piece of information. This kind of practice is also very bad in SEO perspective. Remember that Google doesn’t like boilerplate titles for pages in a site. Boilerplate titles are “long titles that vary by only a single piece of information in a page”.
To better explain this point it is needed to present an example here. Let suppose, a page has a title like “<band name> – See Videos, lyrics, posters, albums, reviews & concerts”. If you look at this example, you will find that it contains a lot of identical text. Now one option is to dynamically update the title in order to better reflect the actual content of the page. For instance, include the terms “video”, “lyrics”, etc., only if that specific page consist of video or lyrics.
There is also another solution and that is just to use “<band name>” as a concise title and use the Meta description to better describe your site’s content. A popular tool of Google, called HTML Suggestions page, in Google Search Console can easily lists any kind of duplicate titles that Google detect on your site pages.
Making Brand Titles
To be considered and ranked higher in search results, you have to brand your title pages of yours site. But be concise, while making your titles branded. One of the best and reasonable place to include additional information about your site is really the title of your site’s home page. You can add here additional information about your site. For instance, if you are running a site related to blogging then “BloggingExplained, a place for peoples to learn about the basics of blogging”.
Now if you start showing up this kind of text in the title of every single page on your website, so it will really hurt and unhappy your readers. It will also look repetitive in case several pages from your site are returned for the same query. In this situation, you have to consider including just your site name at the start or end of each page title, which should be separated from the rest of the title with a delimiter like a hyphen, colon and pipe like <title>ExampleBloggingSite: Sign Up for a New Account.</title>.
Must be Careful about Disallowing Search Engine
While creating your page title and snippet, you must care about disallowing Search Engines from crawling your site pages. You can use the robot.txt protocol file, which contains directives for search engines, on your site to stop and prevent search engines like Google from crawling specific parts of your site or pages of your site to provide search engines helpful tips on how they can best crawl your site.
The usage of robots.txt protocol file on your site can stop Google from crawling your site pages.
Remember that robot.txt protocol file plays a very big role in SEO and it may not always prevent them from being indexed. For instance, Google may index your site page if it discover it by following a link form someone else’s website. Now to show up it in search results, Google will require to show a title of some kind. As Google won’t have access to any of your page content, therefore, they mostly rely on off-page content like anchor text from other websites. You can also permanently and truly block a URL form being indexed, for this purpose you have to use the Meta Tags option.
Now if Google have identified that a specific result has one of the above mentioned issues with its title, then Google will may try to create a better title from anchors, on-page text, or other available sources. But this is not always the same in every case, because sometimes pages that are well-formulated, well-concise and have very good descriptive titles will end up with different titles in the Google search results in order to better indicate their relevancy to the user’s queries. This is because, the title tag which is specified by webmaster is limited to being static, fixed regardless of the search queries.
When users type text for their search queries, the search engines, especially Google, often find other alternative text from a page that is in the position to better explain and provide more relevant information why that result is relevant to the query. This feature, of Google search engine, of using alternative text as a title not only helps the user, but it also can help your site as well. As it is clear that when users enter their desired searching keywords or keyphrases in search engines so they are looking for finding signs of relevance in the results, and a title that is tailored for the query. This kind of activity can really boost and improve the click through rate chances of your website. When they find the relevant search results and relevant title there are more chances that they will click through on that search results.
Now what about your website? Are your site pages appear in modified form or according to your desired format? If you are seeing that your site pages appears in the search results with modified titles, you have to check whether your titles have one of the above mentioned problem with your site. If that is not the case with your site, you have to also consider whether the alternate title is properly fit for the query. However, if you think that the original title would be better for your site title page, you can also contact and ask it in Google Webmaster Help Forum.
Important Points Before Using The Robots.txt Protocol File
While using the robots.txt, you have to keep some important points in mind.
The robotz.txt file is playing a key role in SEO, therefore, it should reside in the root of your blog or website (e.g. https://www.yoursite.com/robots.txt).
When you are making some changes to your robots.txt file, you have to be very careful about this, because this file has really the potential of making big parts of your site inaccessible for search engines.
Remember that that robots.txt file is valid only for full domain it resides on, consisting of the protocol, http or https.
Another important point you should keep in mind that you should avoid using the crawl-delay directive for search engines as much as possible.
On the internet, there different search engines that differently interpret directives. And by default, the first matching directive always wins. But in case of Bing and Google, which are the most popular search engines, specificity wins.
How to Create Good Meta Description?
Creating a good Meta description is very important for a website or blog in SEO point of views. A good Meta description can drive more traffic and conversion for your site. A site without proper Meta description is nothing and automatically will have very low click-through-rate. The Meta description attribute within the <meta> tag is really a very good method. In this way, you can provide a human-readable, relevant and concise summary of each page content. If you look at the Google Search Results Page, you will find that with most website, Meta Description have been used in search result snippets. In fact this is the Meta description that most search engines display in search results, which can influence the click-through rates.
The Meta description gives users a more relevant and accurate description than would be possible purely from the on-page content. It is, therefore, that most SEO experts stress on using accurate meta description because they think it can help improve your click-through-rate.
To improve your site ranking, we have developed some important and necessary guidelines for proper usage of Meta description. These are given below,
Your Meta description cannot be more than 155 characters
There is no right length that really exist, however, while creating your Meta description, you have to keep one important point that it shouldn’t be more than 155 characters. Your Meta description will be okay if you restrict it with in specified limit. Just make it sure that you know you are writing and doing it.
During creating your Meta description you have to use and take the full space to get the message across. But also remember to keep your description short and within the given limit. It is because that Google search results mostly display the snippet of 120 – 156 characters.
Focus On Your Readers/Customers
During creating your Meta description it is necessary to make it sure that description for your product pages need to more focus on this product or service could make the life of your customer better. Similarly, if you are content marketer, you have to more focus on that how your content pages could make the life of your reader’s life. Or how your readers can take more benefit from your content pages.
It is very important that the home page description should sell the way your brand matches the customers/reader’s demand and needs. You have to summarize your content description in a few words that necessarily meet the requirements and wants of your valued readers or customers.
Convey Clear Message in Your Description
Try to convey clear message, to your readers, in your Meta description. A clear message will help your readers/customers to easily understand your message. During creating your Meta description, you have to make it sure that every phrase and word choice conveys the message.
Make it sure that every page on your blog or website has a Meta description.
In order to get higher ranking in search engines, you have to make it sure that each and every page on your site or blog has a good Meta description, you have to. For this purpose you can also take help from HTML Suggestions page in Google Search Console. This page lists pages where Google has identified and detected missing or problematic Meta description. HTML Suggestion is really a good tool where you can easily find which page are missing Meta description.
Each Page on your site must have different description on your site.
If you add similar descriptions on every page of a website so it will not be helpful, especially in those cases, when individual pages appear in the search engine results pages (SERP). Now in such type of cases, you have to less likely to show up the boilerplate text. For better ranking in search results, we highly suggest to create description, wherever possible, that accurately describe a specific page. For better Meta description SEO practices we also advice to use site-level description on the main home page of your site or other aggregation pages, and use page-level descriptions everywhere else.
We know that creating Meta description is a time-consuming process and take too much time to create proper Meta description. However, if you do not have enough time to create a description for every single page on your site, you have to prioritize your site content. We mean that due to shortage of time, at very least, you can create a description for your important URLs such as your home page and other most popular pages, on your site.
High Quality Meta Description is very necessary.
For higher ranking in search results, you have to provide high quality of Meta description on every single page on your site. While creating Meta description, make it sure that is really descriptive. As the Meta descriptions are not displayed in the pages that users sees, therefore, it is very simple and easy to let this content slide. However, remember that high quality Meta description can be displayed in the search engine result pages of Google. Also remember that high-quality description can work for a long time and will really not only improve the quality but also the quantity of your search traffic.
Met description Should Comprised of Clearly Tagged Facts
To get more higher ranking in search engines like Google and Bing, your Meta description needs to be comprised of clearly tagged facts. It is not necessary that Meta description to be always just in sentence format. You can also add structured data about the page. For instance, you are a blogger or running a website that is all about News, so in this case you can list the author, date of publication, or byline info.
If you add this kind of structured data, it will give too much relevant information, to the potential visitors that might not be shown up in the snippet otherwise. On the other hand, of you are running a product page, it might have the key bits of information such as manufacturer, price and age etc. that need to be scattered throughout a page. A Meta description is considered a good Meta description that bring all this type of data organized. As we have stated above that the Meta description doesn’t just have to be in sentence format. Now to support our article, this whole process can be explained, with an example, in a simple way. The following Meta description gives detailed information about a
- <meta name=”Description” content=”Author: A.S. Author,
- Illustrator: P. Picture, Category: Books, Price: $24.99,
Length: 875 pages”>
Now if you look at this example, you will see that all information is clearly tagged and separated.
Programmatically Generate Description for Larger Sites
Generating an accurate and proper description, for each page, for some websites such as news sites is very easy. As in this case, each article is hand-written, and therefore take less efforts to add single-page description for every page. However, for larger sites, which are data-base driven, like products sites, it is very difficult and sometime impossible to add hand-written descriptions.
It is, therefore, that most SEO experts advice and encourage to add your description programmatically and thus it will be appropriate for it. Most SEO consider good description to be human-readable and diverse. The page-specific data is considered very well for programmatic generation. Keep notice that those Meta description that consist of long-strings of keywords do not provide users a clear idea about the page’s content. And it probably it is the main reason that they are less likely to be displayed in place of regular snippet.
Hope this blog post helped in learning how to create good titles & snippets in search results. If you like this post, don’t forget to share it on social networks with your friends and colleagues.
Also read about Basic Considerations during Keyword Research