Even if you have an optimized website, the best keywords, and a perfect content strategy, you might be missing these two crucial things for your business’ success! If you don’t have an enticing SEO title or engaging meta description accompanying your content, the chances of your website being seen (let alone ranking on search engines) falls drastically.
Imagine you are looking at a Google Search Engine page. Each result you see has a blue headline and black subtext underneath. That blue headline is your SEO title and the black text underneath is called your meta description. Each and every page on your website has it’s very own SEO title and meta description. And yes, you should absolutely be writing this yourself not letting your website provider automate this. The automations are great when set up correctly, but what we usually find is that these titles and descriptions will end up being way too long.
Your title is the first thing your audience will see, so it needs to be eye-catching! If you don’t know how or struggle to write compelling SEO titles and meta descriptions, look no further! We’re here to help make it happen.
What is an SEO Title?
Think of your SEO title like a paid ad. How can this headline entice a click? An SEO title is one of the most important aspects of your website content, so it needs to be attention-grabbing to draw in your audience.
When you type in “duo collective blog” into Google, you’ll get a result like this. Here, you can see that our SEO title is specific and entices readers to click. The meta description isn’t too repetitive, either. It specifies what our business is, what we offer, and who might be looking for our services.
We suggest writing your SEO title to be 50-60 characters so your entire title will show up on the SERP. As you compose your SEO title, make sure to incorporate keywords about your business and the services you offer as early as possible. Relevant keywords ensure that your title answers what people are searching for. It also helps your website rank on search engines.
Your SEO title needs to be readable, which means using title case to stand out. It should have proper grammar, spelling, and capitalization. Error-riddled SEO titles aren’t inviting because they aren’t readable or credible to your audience or search engines.
Quick Tip: Leverage characters like the vertical line and ampersand to help save space!
Another question we get all the time is when to use your brand name in an SEO title. The answer is definitely not everywhere. We suggest only using it on your home page because it’s likely people aren’t searching for your brand name. They want the solution you provide! For blogs, don’t use your brand name at all; focus on the question you’re answering with the content.
Our favorite SEO title “equation” is: Keywords + Context / Urgency + Brand
SEO titles are just one thing you need to include for your content to be successful. Don’t forget the meta description! It’s just as essential as the title.
What is a Meta Description?
Your meta description should elaborate on your title or provide more context to what’s on the webpage. Meta descriptions that represent your content well encourage your audience to click on the search result, which will help boost your website’s ranking. Your SEO title should grab your audience’s attention, and the meta description should get them to click on the result.
Here, you can see the circled part is the meta description for our website. We formulated it to include important keywords detailing our services and what we can do for our target audience.
Don’t treat meta descriptions like a social media caption or intro to a blog post. There isn’t much space for the description when it shows up on a SERP, so every word counts! Make sure you include keywords about your business/services, who you are, or where you’re located. Meta description should be 155-160 characters, which can fit almost everything you need on those two lines of the SERP.
Our favorite meta description “equation” is: Keywords + Pain Point / Benefit + Call to Action
Your SEO title and meta description should complement each other, but they shouldn’t be repetitive! If both contain relevant (but different) information about your business and website, then it will drive traffic and engagement to your website.
How to Write the Best SEO Title and Meta Description
It might seem like there are a lot of rules to master when writing great SEO titles and meta descriptions, but it isn’t too hard! This is something I want you to remember because this is going to take all the stress away from this little SEO optimization.
SEO titles are a ranking factor.
Meta descriptions are NOT a ranking factor.
This has actually been confirmed by the head of search at Google! Although it’s best practice to use keywords in your meta description it’s not going to affect where you rank on the page.
Here are a few best practices we use when we write our own.
Utilize Online Tools
These are some of my favorite tools to use when writing these two things for my clients.
- MRS Digital when I am writing this myself
- AI tools. Ubersuggest has a brand new one under their Labs tab and you can get a personalized writer for things like SEO titles, meta descriptions, headlines and more.
- I also love to use ChatGPT. I ask it to give me 5 options of meta descriptions for a web page in this industry, using this keyword. Be specific!
We’ve touched a bit on this already, but we can’t stress enough how important it is to use keywords in your titles and descriptions. A LOT of SEO success depends on the keywords used to drive traffic and build online visibility.
The best way to incorporate keywords into your titles and descriptions is to research some relevant to your business. These keywords should ideally have a high search volume and low to medium competition. These types of keywords help your website compete and rank on search engines.
Level of Detail
Next, your titles and descriptions should hit the right balance of simple and descriptive. A nonexistent title or description will do nothing (or possibly hurt) your business’ search rankings. SEO titles and meta descriptions that are too simple aren’t compelling enough to pull in your audience because it lacks context and relevance. An SEO title and meta description with too much detail usually have more information than the character limits allow.
If titles are too long, they’ll trail off into ellipses. Ellipses aren’t always a bad thing, but your audience is less inclined to click on the search result of your business if the title or description doesn’t address their search inquiry right off the bat.
A well-written SEO title has keywords, context, or urgency to click on your website and your brand. An effective meta description should have keywords, an audience pain point you’re resolving or a benefit they get from your content, and a call to action to encourage them to click on the result.
If you have to take away one lesson, let it be this: Keywords take priority! So much of your SEO success hinges on the keywords you use, so make sure they’re relevant to your business.
You don’t have to stop at the basics to craft an amazing SEO title and meta description. Did you know that we offer an SEO coaching program? Learning about SEO is one of the best ways to increase your website’s organic traffic and improve your business’s online presence. We know how important SEO is for digital marketing, so we created this program to help you build this skillset!
Over the course of this 6-week program, you’ll learn SEO basics and beyond (yes, this includes SEO titles and meta descriptions!) We get into keyword searching, website optimization, best design and copy practices, SEO on social media, and more! Also, you’ll have access to SEO help through your coaches and peers who join the program.
Ready to hop in the program? Join the waitlist (or if you’re lucky and the program is open, join today!) We’d love to have you join us! Fair warning, these spots fill up fast, so you’ll want to sign up as soon as you can.
One final piece of advice: If you update any of these, be sure to request a manual recrawl in Google search console. This helps Google index your new data and serve it to people faster.
We can’t stress enough how crucial compelling SEO titles and meta descriptions are for your business’s online visibility and organic traffic. We hope these tips and tricks gave you some guidance on crafting the best titles and descriptions! If you need SEO help beyond SEO titles and meta descriptions, let’s work together! We love helping entrepreneurs and businesses improve their SEO and reach their goals. Contact us today to get started on crafting your personalized SEO strategy today!