Title Tags are Less Important: SEO for Your Site Text

Posted on March 14, 2011 • Written by Brad Anderson

It seems that our HTML title tags are being used as snippets and page titles in the results of a Google search with decreasing frequency. This can be maddening to site owners who are trying to boot their SEO by optimizing their title and page tags. But title and page tags are an easy target. That is, it’s easy for any site to put whatever it wants in the title tags, hoping that Google will place it in the search results. For example, a great black-hat SEO.

trick to use is to include page and title tags that have no bearing whatsoever on the actual content of the site in attempt to lure unsuspecting users into coming to their site.

Keyword Tags are Ignored by Google

Google recognizes this fact and has continually placed a diminishing amount of importance on top-level site tags. This can be seen in the way that keywords tags are almost virtually ignored today, when they were once extremely important in search engine ranking. Today, Google is much more interested in your site content than the tags that you have placed on your content.

This means that relying on your title tags and page tags to help out your SEO in any way is a futile attempt. Thus, you need to refocus your attention on your site content.

Focus SEO on Content

Content is king, and Google knows that it is much harder to fake your site content than it is to fake your title tags. Thus, Google has increasingly been using snippets from elsewhere on your page to display in search results. This may mean that your site is coming up in more searches that are unrelated to your site content.

Check Your Stats

That’s why it’s always a good idea to check your Google or Alexa stats, so you will have a good idea of the words that people are using to find your site. Analyze your results and see if you are showing up in searches that are unrelated to your site content (or not showing up in searches that are related), and adjust the content of your site accordingly.

The key to all this is SEO through analysis. Instead of just throwing together a few keywords you think are cool and focusing on them throughout your site, make sure you get a firm understanding on the language people use to search for content that is similar to yours. Make sure you use that language on your site, so you can target the audience you are going after.

All Snippets Are Good

All in all, you can use search engine optimization principles to really focus your content toward your specific audience and the language they are using. If you are being diligent about provioing good, focused content, it shouldn’t matter that Google is using snippets that aren’t from your title tags—because all the text on your site will be optimized.

Brad Anderson

Written by Brad Anderson

Brad Anderson is the Executive Director and Founder of Fruition. Brad’s focus is supporting Fruition’s team to enable sustainable growth and excellent client satisfaction (EBITDA growth). With a strong statistical background, Brad built Fruition’s in-house software that is used to manage client success.

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