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Title Anomoly

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10 replies to this topic

#1 dzinerbear


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Posted 18 August 2003 - 09:00 AM

Hi all,

We're told time and again how important the title tag is. But I'm confused by this one. When I type in "my keyword" into Google, the number one site has title "brand name keyword." The second site is "untitled document". And then a bunch of other sites with "my keyword" in the title follow those two. My site is number 10.

How is that happening?

#2 deborah2002


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Posted 18 August 2003 - 09:15 AM

Good Morning!
Well, first thing is....the title tag is important but it isnt THE most important. You need to have your keyword(s) in your text as well. Don't rely on any 1 tag to get you to #1--sprinkle it around your page (as long as it still makes sense to the reader!).
Do you have ALT tags on your images? Don't try to stuff 'em, make them relevant but this can help with keyword density. How's your description tag looking? This is what usually shows up in the SERPs too. How 'bout a site map? That helps the spiders move around and find all your pages a little easier.
Lastly, content is king. Writing good keyword rich copy will get you movin' on up.

Have you tried a keyword density analyzer? Try this one (you can cut/paste the code you want to analyze):

Hope this helps--good luck! :aloha:

#3 mcanerin


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Posted 18 August 2003 - 10:55 AM

I'd like to add that sometimes as SEO's we lose track of why we want to be at the top of SE's. It's so people will find the site and *gasp* actually click on the link and go to it :)

Imagine a 2 sites, ranked 3 and 4. Rank 3 site is called "Untitled Document" with no description, or a vague one. Rank 4 is called "Your Keyword Specialists" and describes itself as the best place to go for all things your keyword. Which would you click on? In your head, you've just ranked number 4 above number 3, regardless of what G has to say about it.

There are (IMHO) 3 types of SE users: Neophyte, Serial Clicker, and Sniper (my terms, though I'm not the first to notice this).

The Neophyte is scared of "breaking something" and is very likely to type in a keyword and trust the first thing that pops up. Often, if they don't find what they are looking for, they don't hit the back arrow, they do a totally different search, or give up.

The Serial Clicker, is a little more confident. They are "sure it's in here somewhere" and typically start with number one and go down the list. Once they are tired of looking, they usually go back to one of the ones they previously went to. This is the online equivalent to window shopping or comparitive shopping.

The 3rd, and most experienced group, are the Snipers. They type in a keyword phrase then look at the results, judging them by what they consider to be most likely to be a good result. They will look at domain names, description, titles, etc. Then they will zero in on the one or 2 that are most likely to give good results. It doesn't matter if they are numbers 4 and 8, or 1 and 2. This group is also likely to be most comfortable at actually *buying* something online.

So your title tag is very important, not only for the SE, but also for the users. Get a great Title and be in the top 10, and you may find yourself clicked on by users more often than those above you. That's the whole point, right? :)


#4 HitProf


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Posted 18 August 2003 - 12:54 PM

I recently changed a home page title by added one word. This was the only change I made. The site gained 15 places in Google for a particular search containing that extra word in a competitive area. So title tags are important but not everything.

#5 darciusrex


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Posted 18 August 2003 - 02:44 PM

Are there any guidelines to the number of words or characters a title tag should have? It seems like the pages on the site I'm working on that get left out of Google have longer names. Coincidence? :)

#6 qwerty


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Posted 18 August 2003 - 02:58 PM

No coincidence. I think your title should be concentrated. Keep it succinct, get your kw phrase in there, and try to keep it below a count of 50 characters. The longer you make it, the lower the keyword density within it will be. It also helps to have the kw at the beginning of the title.

#7 Vermont


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Posted 18 August 2003 - 02:59 PM

Probably no more than 70-characters for a title tag

#8 Jill


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Posted 19 August 2003 - 11:47 AM

This may sound cryptic, but imo, the Title tag should be as long or as short as it needs to be.

I recommend optimizing for two or three keyword phrases per page, and when you do that, you need to make sure all of those phrases are represented in the Title tag, for best results.


#9 bwelford


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Posted 19 August 2003 - 12:05 PM

BTW current wisdom seems to be that Google no longer uses the Description metatag in its ranking algorithm. However the Description text may be used in the SERP in describing the link.

The Description metatag is used by other Search Engines so it's always worth doing.

Barry Welford

#10 dzinerbear


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Posted 21 August 2003 - 12:30 AM

Hi all,

I don't think my original question was addressed, so I'll try again.

How does a site with no title end up getting a number 2 ranking for "my keyword." And I'll add more puzzling information to the pot:

It has one paragraph of text and mentions the keyword once.

It employees graphic navigation buttons, with Javascript rollovers.

It's got no alt tags.

It has no keyword or description tags.

Essentially, anything you could do wrong, this site is doing it.

I don't get it.

#11 qwerty


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Posted 21 August 2003 - 12:36 AM

How many backlinks does it have, and how many of those backlinks have the keyword in the anchor text?

The title is very important, but there are plenty of other factors at work. I think that if a given page is way out ahead of its competition on one of those factors it can jump ahead in the SERPs.

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