Readers do not simply browse the internet for contents, they search. Around 80% of the time, internet sessions start in search engines. Search engines also give new sites 30% of their daily traffic. It is there important to consider SEO when writing for your website to improve your incoming traffic.
Most bloggers will tell you to write for your readers when considering your posts headline. They will tell you that your headline should grab the attention of your readers and that you should think about search engine optimization in the body of your post. However, some readers will not be able to see your witty headline if they are not presented in the first few pages of the search engine.
So why compensate SEO over a creative headline when you can consider both for your headlines? Here are some tips on how to optimize your headlines for both the search engines and readers.
- Use Google
Try to search for your keyword in Google. See those related search terms? Yes, those that are presented to you as you type in the search box. Those are the most popular words or phrases that are relevant to your keyword which also gains a lot of searches. Aside from using your keyword, you can also include these related terms in an interesting headline that can help you cater to a greater traffic.
- Learn to realize what is a good headline
Being a netizen, you should know what draws your attention to an article that you come across the web. Apply what you know or the things that you look for in a good headline in your next posts. Check your viewing history and try to determine why you clicked the link in the first place. You can also check popular blog posts or those that generates a lot of likes/shares and learn a thing or two on their headlines.
To help you checking your web history you can go to https://www.google.com/dashboard/ to easily review your history or past searches. You can track from here which are the headlines that you clicked and read.
- Make sure that you know your readers
Of course, you should have a clear idea for whom do you write your articles. You should know your readers attitude towards your posts. Check which of your post has the most views, most comments, most likes or most shares in social media. From these, you will be given an idea on how your readers respond to your headlines. Do they like those that are in the form of question? Or titles that are written in a more laid back manner?
- Practice writing your headlines
Most of you may just be practicing writing skills to improve the content of their article, besides it is already a lot of work to try and improve your article. But what if you pay the same attention and time in crafting your title? Yes, it is important to have a well-written article. But your title is the first thing that grabs the attention of your readers.
Try to make several titles before publishing your post. There is always a number of ways to write your title. Write from different angles and see which one will fit perfectly with your readers taste. You may also find a new topic for a different post while doing so.
- Split Test
How do you split test your title? Use social media. If you have a Twitter or Facebook account, use them to promote your post. Try to use two different titles and see which one will get more clicks, likes, shares, comments or retweets. Choose the one that participated better. You can further create another title and put it against the winner again for split testing.
If you have already published your article and don’t want to mess around with permalinking, you can just use your social media split testing to determine which headline works better in attracting readers.
It only takes a limited time of research, practice and testing to come up with a great headline that would cater to your readers and has the qualities for improved SEO.