on January 3, 2022

On Page SEO: The Power of the Title Tag

Leigh Trask

The seo title tag is one of the most important factors in your site's search engine optimization. Title tags can be used to attract more visitors, and they are also a great way to incorporate keywords that you want your website to rank for. It may seem like just another small detail, but it could make or break how well your site performs on Google. In this blog post, we'll discuss what title tags are and why they matter, whether length matters, how to incorporate modifier keywords, and how to duplicate main phrase keywords within title tags.

What is a title tag?

The title tag is an HTML title element critical to both SEO and user experience that is used to briefly and accurately describe the topic and theme of an online document. within the HTML page source, it will look like this:

<title>On Page SEO: The Power of the Title Tag</title>


Now, this is important to know because the title tag is displayed to searchers in two different areas:

Internet Browser Tab

If the searcher lands on a specific URL, whether typing in the URL directly, getting there through your site's navigational elements, or finding the URL in Google or Bings Search Results, if you hover over the current tab the URL is searched within with your mouse, you will see the title tag element.

Search Results Page

When a searcher searches for a keyword phrase or keyword query, the search engines will display the title tag in their results as a blue clickable element, that will look like this:

Optimizing your title's length for search engines

When it comes to optimizing your content for search engines, one of the most important factors is the length of your title. In order to get the most bang for your buck, you want to make sure that your title is as long as possible while still being readable and interesting.

There are a few things to keep in mind when writing titles:

  1. Make sure each word matters
  2. Use keywords where possible without sacrificing readability
  3. Keep it short enough that people will actually want to click on it.

If you can hit all three of those marks, you’re guaranteed to see an increase in traffic from search engines.

How do you incorporate modifier keywords within your title tag?

Modifier keywords refer to the words that modify your main keyword.

For example, if your main keyword is "dog," a possible modifier keyword would be "poodle."

But how do you determine which modifier keywords to include in your title tag?

It's a good idea to include the modifier keywords within your title tag that are most relevant to the page you're currently working on. This means if your site is about a certain type of product – let's say it's all about, oh, I don't know – "dog toys," then you would want to include words like ball, rope, squeaky, or treat within your title tag. However, there are those modifier keywords that should always be included, no matter what type of content you're talking about. These include:

1. The main keyword

2. Other important long-tail keywords that describe your page's contents

3. Brand names and product names (if they apply)

4. Names of certain types of content or products (e.g., "news," "tutorial," "comparison chart," "discount," etc.)

Should you duplicate the main phrase in your title tag?

There is a lot of debate over whether or not to duplicate the main phrase in your title tag. Some people believe that it will help you rank higher in search engines, while others think that it could hurt your ranking because it looks like you’re trying too hard. Still, others believe that it doesn’t make much of a difference either way.

At the end of the day, it's not something that you want to risk with your SEO if you can avoid it. Duplicating your main phrase is known as keyword stuffing, and Google has said that they may give lower rankings to sites that do this.

There are several instances where duplicating the main phrase within your title tag is part of the natural flow of writing, such as for lyrics. For example, if you go to Google and type in “I want it that way Backstreet Boys” you will get all sorts of sites with this title tag. This makes sense because it follows through on what the searcher is looking for and how they phrased their search.

We generally recommend against duplicating the main phrase in your title tag, but we do realize that there are exceptions to this rule and sometimes you just can’t avoid it. As long as you keep the instances of such minimal, you should be okay.

What should you do next?

To learn more about how they can help your site rank better in search engines, check out these additional resources from Google Webmaster Guidelines below:

Google Webmaster Guidelines: The Title Tag Element

Google Webmaster Guidelines: How we Generate Web Page Titles

Your content marketing strategy is critical if you want to rank high for upper-funnel search queries where your industry's audience is searching for informational results. If you do not target upper funnel keywords, your industry will not regard you as trustworthy when they are ready to buy and click on your product or services page. What good is it to rank high for lower-funnel phrases if you're going to have low conversion rates? Traffic is great, but traffic that converts is ultimately what we are all looking for.

We hope this helps, and if you would like to inquire about SEO consulting, please do not hesitate to reach out to SEMhawaii for expert SEO consulting.

Contact us today for a free consultation.
About the author
SEO Specialist at SEMHAWAII

Leigh Trask

Our custom SEO services solution is laser-focused on driving organic visitors and growing revenue. We merge keyword-driven, long-form content, custom graphics, video, and SEO-friendly link building. In short, we provide complete, end-to-end managed SEO work with exemplary results

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