Pumping Up Your Title Tags

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Every ecommerce website has title tags, but are yours working as hard as they can? Title tags can be an important part of search engine optimization because they tell search engine bots what your website is about. Writing good tags is an important part of designing your ecommerce website for success, but what makes a tag ‘good’? Here are a few tips:

  1. Use them. A surprising number of ecommerce websites do not use title tags, or more commonly, do not use them wisely. This is unfortunate because titles are an opportunity to tell both search engine bots and customers what your pages are all about.
  2. Place keywords. Titles tags are a good place to use targeted keywords, especially long tail keyword phrases that often do not fit well into text and other areas of your website. Because title tags ‘count’ more than regular text, placing top keywords here can make a huge difference in your ranking.
  3. Use keywords in the correct places. The wording at the beginning of your title tags generally ‘counts’ more than than wording placed later on. Use your keywords in the first half of your title tags for better search engine ranking. If you are using descriptive or branded page titles, place them after the keywords to ensure that the keywords are seen as the most important phrases.
  4. Be brief. There is significant discussion about whether long or short title tags are best, but one thing is clear: extraneous information can lower your search engine ranking. In addition, most search engines will only show the first seventy characters, so anything beyond that is useless. Choose your keywords wisely and choose the one or two that are most important and most relevant to your website.
  5. Use your website name or other branded language. As your ecommerce website grows, people may begin to search for your name or other brand-related phrases. For this reason, your title tags should include some brand-related language. This will also help to build a website brand because customers will see your name in multiple parts of your website.
  6. Leave out special characters. With Google and other search engines changing the rules for SEO on an almost daily basis, many ecommerce websites are unsure of whether special characters, such as ampersands, hash marks and dollar signs, belong in title tags. In some cases, they make sense, because they are common abbreviations and also can help you stay under that seventy character limit. However, the top ranked sites usually omit these characters, a fact that indicates that there is a good reason not to include them.

The basic rule for title tags is that you should make them as relevant and short as possible. Give your website pages titles that are relevant to your brand and include top keywords, but limit titles to these elements. These strategies will bring you a whole lot closer to that coveted first page of search engine results while increasing the chances that customers will click on your links.