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Why Place * At Beginning Of Page Titles


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#1 seostudent

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Posted 28 June 2013 - 07:30 AM

I've seen a site that has recently been SEO'd and an asterisk (*) has been inserted at front of most page title tags. Examples: * Expert advice on [product name] and * Looking for [product name] and * [product name].

 

I've been watching SEO for a few years and never seen this before. What does the asterisk do?



#2 chrishirst

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Posted 28 June 2013 - 08:07 AM

ABSOLUTELY NOTHING AT ALL.

 

It's just one more SEO "expert" myth / fallacy / lie / flight of fancy that it will make that URL title "stand out" when viewed in the results.

 

There has been many such "tricks" using various ASCII or Unicode characters and/or HTML entities in document titles over the years. All have died out once people realised it was just more bull poo.gif and writing a really good document title still worked best of all.

 

 



#3 seostudent

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Posted 28 June 2013 - 08:15 AM

Thanks chrishirst. I guess the spaces taken up by the * and spaces around it also waste spaces that could be used for keywords (getting them to the front of the title). Another question: Would losing the first few spaces to the asterisk actually have a detrimental impact versus having a keyword as the very first characters in the title?



#4 Jill

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Posted 28 June 2013 - 09:05 AM

 

Would losing the first few spaces to the asterisk actually have a detrimental impact versus having a keyword as the very first characters in the title?

 

 

 

IMO - no.



#5 bobmeetin

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Posted 28 June 2013 - 09:14 AM

If you are really curious you could try googling the exact phrase in quotes to see if it gets you any special results. The asterisk may be ignored.

 

When I see things like this it makes me think that it is some sort of substitution function that the CMS software is planting in the pages according to its logic. Maybe that's a longshot, but I know for a fact that zencart does something of this nature and I think joomla (if you ignore managing titles and descriptions yourself).



#6 chrishirst

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Posted 28 June 2013 - 02:11 PM

I guess the spaces taken up by the * and spaces around it also waste spaces that could be used for keywords (getting them to the front of the title

)

And that gets another No



#7 seostudent

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Posted 03 July 2013 - 07:54 AM

Thanks all for your feedback. That clears it up for me. Bobmeetin I cant access the CMS but not all pages have the *, and some have missed spaces around the *, so it looks like a manual add to me.



#8 bobmeetin

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Posted 03 July 2013 - 09:50 AM

Can't access the CMS? That's a problem in itself. Gotta figure that out if you're going to oversee/manage the site or you have to rely on others to do it as you want. Bob






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