Blog post headlines are a tricky animal. While you may be tempted to write a clever headline, it’s not going to draw a reader to your page. Why? Because keywords, not puns or wittiness, drive search engines.
Let’s explain, with this example:
You’ve just written your best-ever blog post, topped by a headline so clever your heart nearly burst with pride. Once potential customers read that catchy headline, so many will click through to your website that the server may go down. Conversion rates will be through the roof. You’ll probably need to hire more people to handle all the new business.
Yet a week after posting it, there has been no response. Nothing. Nada.
What went wrong?
You wrote an informative article to promote your dog-grooming business by explaining how grooming the family dog cuts down on allergens in the home. But your oh-so-punny headline was: “Doggone: The dog days of allergies are over!”
Clever? Maybe. But when it comes to writing for the web, that headline is a dog. (Sorry, couldn’t resist.) Your potential customers searching online for dog grooming services or ways to curb allergens are not going to type your headline words into the search field.
Your keyword phrase should be “dog grooming reduces allergens.” An effective headline for readers and search engines would be “How grooming your dog reduces allergens.”
Search engines look first at the headline to determine if it matches any keywords people are using in their search. That’s why our newsletter articles always have a different headline when posted to our blog.
Clever headlines fit the style and tone of our newsletter, which has loyal fans who enjoy consuming information delivered in an offbeat, amusing way. But when we offer up these same articles to be found in a search, we rewrite the blog post headlines to follow these rules:
- DO include keywords. They help the post rank higher in search, increasing the likelihood it will be found by readers who want information on your topic.
- DON’T be too clever. Simple, straightforward headlines are search-friendly. If you want kudos for clever wordplay, share the punny headline you didn’t use with your mother, friend or coworker.
- DO be concise. People browsing online are making split-second decisions to stay or click away. The quicker you can hook them with your headline, the better.
Need help with writing or editing content for your website, blog, email newsletter or brochure? Call Kim Landry at 484-829-0021 or email [email protected].