7 Days to Better Your SEO | Day 1: Title Tags

7 Days to Better Your SEO
(Search Engine Optimization)

Day 1: Title Tags

Over the next week I am going to write about some key concepts any Agent should be thinking about if they want to enhance their website for the search engines.  Commonly known as SEO (Search Engine Optimization) a process by which you tailor your content, links, and images to maximize your exposure to the search engine indexing bots to gain better positioning.

The first concept I want to go over is the Meta Title Tag.

The Title Tag is required in all HTML and XHTML documents and specifically is used in the following 3 ways;

  1. Defines the title in your web browser
  2. Displays the title in certain search engine results
  3. Displays the title when you add a favorite

These simple words are one of the most important factors in any good SEO plan.  Even merely fixing the title tags on your web page could generate a comparable difference in your search engine rankings. When creating title tags you want to keep in mind the “main ideas” throughout the content of your website.

So many people will just put “Home”,  “Buying”, etc. as a title tag.  This is a waste of a good oppurtunity to get keywords to your viewers.  I also see people overloading the keywords in a title tag for example;  real estate, homes, MLS search, nj, bergen county REALTOR.  The first phrase “real estate” yields 487,000,000 results.  Maybe 1% is your target market and getting to even the top 50 might be a difficult task.  When considering a title put a location qualfier in your title for example;  Bergen County New Jersey Real Estate or Find homes in Leonia New Jersey.

Don’t forget the titles are also ad copy for the search engines, they are the bolded results that appear when you search so good and well thought our titles are critical.

So lets see an example:

You have a Real Estate company – we’ll call it “Green Realty”.
They specialize in condo foreclosures in Northern New Jersey

A title tag you may want to use would look like this:
“Green Realty Northern New Jersey Condo Foreclosures”

This way potential clients that are interested enough to search any one of those words or phrases will come across your web page resulting in higher search engine rankings and a better chance in marketing their property. You DO want to stay away from “copy and pasting” content from your website into your title tags; especially avoiding too many words like “the”, “and” and any other filler words.  An acceptable amount of words per title tag would be around 10 – 15.  Putting too many words really specifies the title your web page and it will be over looked by the search engines because a simple search for “Northern New Jersey Homes” may not match “Homes in Bergen, Passaic, Hudson and Sussex Counties”. This also applies to the contrary – a search for “Northern New Jersey Homes” may not pull up a web page with a title tag “NJ Homes” that is not high enough in its results for a potential client to see.

If you really want to get more specific on the title tag length, lets look at Google and Yahoo who are the most prominent search engines around.  Google will only display the first 66 characters of your title, while Yahoo will display 120.  When writing your titles, consider where your titles will be cropped and try to make the most sense out of the lengths above.  If you are really going to get granular you should consider your first 64 characters for Google and put your first set of keywords there and then your next 54 characters for a secondary set of keywords for Yahoo.  Here is a another spin on the above title using character length.

Green Realty Northern New Jersey Condo Foreclosures Specialists – Get a free New Jersey Relocation Packet

Up to the hyphen is 65 characters so in Google the title will appear like this

Green Realty Northern New Jersey Condos Foreclosures Specialists -…

However in Yahoo your title would appear like this

Green Realty Northern New Jersey Condos Foreclosures Specialists – Get a free New Jersey Relocation Packet

By designing around these limits you can not only gain some more space for additional keyword content but also control what appears on the results and ultimately what people will see.

My next post will about Anchor Text and how to make the best use out of them.

7 thoughts on “7 Days to Better Your SEO | Day 1: Title Tags

  1. Hi,

    Just Found this blogpost from my Technorati upcomming news event Story section. really interesting post , that’s why subscribed your RSS feeder, Hope you will add more usefull posts soon.

    Keep it Up.


  2. Interesting article about title tags; I’ve heard both sides of this seo debate concerning whether the search engines use titles tags for any authority juice. Most seo’ers say “no” for big G, but others seem to think it is an essential part of the ranking formula for the smaller guys. Best to be on the safe side and get them on there and in order.


  3. Hey Mark, interesting post. I subscribed as this is the sort of useful info I like.

    I am wondering if these title tags are the same thing as the description so far as Google search results are concerned. I’ve seen some descriptions have actual links in them and am also wondering what impact this has on rankings. Thanks!


    1. Google does use the meta title and description. If the site has no description Google will scan the page. I suspect the links come from that. I am not sure how relevant adding a link in the description would be in terms of SEO. Relevant content is much better.


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