Why indeed…let’s talk about that a little bit today.
Descriptive, persuasive titles and descriptions start with – you guessed it – keyword research. Yep, that’s always going to be the case. Let’s assume you’ve done that and you’re ready to start optimizing a web page. Why not begin with the meta tags? And keep in mind, compelling titles and descriptions also apply to blogging and optimized press releases, so don’t just limit your writing and optimizing skills to static web pages!
What’s most important for you to absorb is you’re writing them to get people to come to your website. It’s that simple. For the most part, the search engines use your web page/site title and description in their results. But first you have to figure out a great keyword phrase to use, that makes sense, AND accurately sets the theme of the page you’re optimizing.
So, for lack of a better term, it doesn’t hurt to get in the mindset of “come hither, my dear” when you’re writing these. I mean, think about yourself for a minute…
You do a keyword search for your favorite running shoes that the local store doesn’t carry anymore, how dare them! Ugh! And you need those darn things NOW, because you have a big race in a month. So, you plug in a keyword term that makes sense to you, and…
You scan the results on page 1. About halfway down, you read something that grabs you by the throat and eyeballs. There it is – a site that has your very favorite running shoes, and shipping’s free! Whoo hoo!
See what I mean? Somebody wrote a rather compelling (to you, anyways) description and threw in something none of us can resist – free shipping!
Titles and descriptions are meant to encourage the web searcher to click to your site, to get valuable, useful information to solve the problem she has. If you can’t convince her in search engine listings, you’re not going to make money. It’s that simple.
And not only do you need to creatively write these things, but you also need to optimize them with the chosen keyword phrase for the page. And… much like Twitter, there are character counts and limits for what search engines will show in the snippet. So every word has to count, you need to grab her attention, and most importantly, when she lands on your page, you need to convince her with the very first words and verbs that she should stay for awhile on your site, browse your pages, and heed your call to action!
It’s a tall order, but it can be done. So brainstorm, think big and really write good titles and descriptions that convince your reader to visit your site, not your competitions. By the way, Search Engine Academy can show you how to write butt-kicking, compelling, descriptive and very accurate titles and descriptions, so let us know when you’re ready to learn!
Until next time…go forth and SEO!