Tweaking the Title Tag
In the flurry of activity leading up to and directly following the announcement of the Complete Blogging Package contest (by the way, we’re up to about 30 entries at last count), I completely forgot one fairly critical step. The rules of the contest stipulate that entrants must link to the home page of this blog with the anchor text of “make money blogging” or something along those lines. However, until a few days ago, I hadn’t included my target phrase anywhere on my site! Now, as I’ve mentioned before, my background is in SEO so you can imagine my surprise when a non-SEO friend of mine pointed out my mistake. I’m not sure whether I just mentally filed it away and forgot to come back to it or what but the fact was, my site was not set up to make the most of the contest.
As you can now see, I’ve tweaked the title of this blog from “the site title + site description” (in this case it was Blogging Experiment – $0 to a full time income in only one year and every step in between) to “Target Phrase with Site Title” (in this case Make Money Blogging with Blogging Experiment). This accomplishes two things. First and foremost, it gets the search phrase I’m targeting to the front of the Title tag. This basically alerts the search engines that my site is indeed about making money blogging. The second benefit of this change is that the title tag is now much shorter, giving more emphasis to the words that are left. Rather than diluting the power of my title tag, I’m condensing it into one short, powerful phrase. Think of it like your memory; if you’re asked to remember a long phrase chances are you’ll get the first few words right every time, but towards the middle it will be tougher to recall. By cutting down the length of my title tag I’m making sure I don’t confuse any search engines.
So, what effects has this change had? Luckily for us, it appears that Google is moving uncharacteristically fast this week as I’ve shot up to #73 in their rankings for the term make money blogging. Prior to making the change to the title, the incoming links from the contest were likely seen as an attempt to Googlebomb the site. With this one small change, I’ve basically let them know that this site does indeed cover that topic. As side note, while doing a bit of searching in preparation for this post I noticed I’m now in the top spot on Google for the term blogging experiment. Sure that’s the title of this blog and it’s hardly a competitive term but hey, #1 rankings are always nice.
If you’d like more information on Search Engine Optimization (SEO) I strongly recommend the SEO Book by Aaron Wall. It’s worth every penny whether you’re an experienced SEO or a blogger with a budget just trying to get the most out of your site.