Using a web page's title

14 April 2009

After a website's domain name, the page title is the second most important part of a website used for search engine optimisation.

The title tag on a web page should contain keywords, but at the same time tell the user what the web page has to offer.

The web page's title is what is displayed on Google when carrying out a search. Any search words used will be made bold in the web page's link.

It is also a good idea to keep your website's name in the title tag as this indicates to people using search engines that this is your website - as an individual page name may be seen as quite random if found just on it's own.

Google reads imprtance from left to right and from top to bottom, and so the title tag should also be used in this way.

I personally use the title tag (and recommend you do the same) in the following format:

Page name - parent page name - website name

This will include the current web page's name and also the website's name - and a bonus is including the parent page's name as quite often keywords will be repeated as you work down through navigation and sub navigation.

For example look at the blue bar at the top of this page. It will look like this (depending on the web browser you're using):

Web page title

You will see that this page name is "Using a web page's title", this page's parent page name is "Blog" and the website name is "Peter Nichol".

As for the "Mozilla Firefox" at the end - this is because this is the name of the web browser that I'm currently using.

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Current comments:

Peter Nichol says:

Ant, I see what you're saying, maybe I should have rephrased that the web page title (to my knowledge) is the 2nd highest scoring piece of SEO after the domain name, but not necessarily the most important.

As for Microformats, I had never looked into these before, but it's something that I will definitely start to look into more.

15 April 2009 12:27pm

Ant Hodges says:

Whilst I agree that the title tag (the first variable tag that can be used for SEO on a web page) is important, I find it hard to believe that search engines are placing this as the 2nd most important part of a website, just after the URL. Search engines, the good ones anyway, will enable site to perform better with intelligent and researched keyword choices, well written ‘fat free’ source code and relevant content presented clearly to both the user and search engine alike - This is where the title and URL comes in I believe. I would also watch out for Microformats - They are going to revolutionise SEO.

14 April 2009 9:33am