Simple headline best practices you can’t afford to overlook.
Don’t bury the message. Your headline should be clear, compelling and use terms visitors are looking for. All too often, authors borrow from older journalistic practices that were perfected for newspapers and magazines, which may use phrases and terms that human readers look for, but whose subtlety is lost on search engines and non-native readers of the language. This isn’t to say you can’t engage in some word play and cleverness, just don’t rely on that alone to entice readers to click and read more.
If your publishing format supports it, consider a sub-title or excerpt. This is where you can expand upon the initial title adding more detail, additional/secondary key words and even a short overview/teaser of what the readers can expect to see when they choose to check out your full-length article. From a technical point of view, sub-titles and excerpt content can even be encoded to make sure social networks and search engines give it priority when displaying your link to potential visitors.
Make the best use of the space and time you have to work with. Many social networks and search engines have a maximum length they will display when integrating your content. Be aware of these “hard stops” (they may vary from site to site) and make sure you get all or at least most of your message across before that limit. Beyond the technical limits, make sure your title hits the “human mark” too. Read it aloud. Do you find yourself stumbling over phrasing or running out of breath before it makes its full impact? If so, might be a good idea to do some fine-tuning until it flows better.
I'm the front-man of It's WordPress. I come from a diverse array of backgrounds, enjoying the opportunity to expand my knowledge base and skill set by re-inventing myself. I enjoy environments that focus on emerging information, technology and concepts. I put on the technical hat in my early 20s and never really looked back. I'm love technology and the internet, as well as the outdoors and avidly hike, kayak and camp every chance I get.
We can take you from concept, through design, development and deployment in one seamless process. Whether you choose a self-managed web site or need a continuing support relationship; we've got you covered.