6-tips-writing-blog-titlesA few weeks ago, we posted an article on our blog entitled What kind of Facebook user are you?

So far this year, it has been the second biggest traffic driver to our website and is still driving traffic on a daily basis (which means that it is still making its journey across the social space!).

Why was that title so effective?

As with all of the content that we publish, we spent quite a bit of time thinking about the title of that blog post. We’ll discuss our keywords, what people are searching for on Google, all the usual stuff, but often we come back to this:

We just want to entice people to click through – simple as that.

Sure, we have SEO on our radar but it doesn’t dictate our titles as we know that, if the people like it, the search engines will, as a result.

So, here are 6 tips to ensure that your blog titles get as many click-throughs as possible:

1. Always spend 5/10 minutes thinking about your title

Whether you decide on your title before your main content or at the end, it’s absolutely worth spending 5 or 10 minutes thinking about your title before you commit to ‘publish’. I’ll often ask other people in the office if it would entice them to click-through and sometimes the ones I think will work just don’t resonate with others.

2. Use an intriguing adjective

An exciting adjective can transform a bog-standard blog title to one that creates intrigue and encourages click-through. Think ‘awesome’, ‘surprising’, ‘disputable’, ‘astounding’, ‘questionable’, ‘shocking’, ‘sure-fire’, ‘boring’, ‘cool’ and so on. This leads readers to believing that they are about to discover something new which they simply can’t pass up on!

3. Define the number of ‘golden nuggets’

You generally can’t go wrong with titles such as “5 ways to increase brand awareness”, “10 killer social media tips”. People are naturally drawn to titles like that as they know they are likely to be presented with some practical tips in quick-fire fashion – that endless desire to consume information as quickly as physically possible!

Check to see if anything has already been written on the topic – maybe your competitors have written on the subject – and take a look at the titles of the articles which have been shared the most. Here is a useful tool to check how many times a particular URL has been shared Linktally.com

This super-handy tool allows you to see how competitive certain words are in search engines (low competition is better), which ones are enjoying upwards trends and also which searches are ‘hot’ right now. Ubersuggest is also great for getting keyword ideas from real-user queries based on ‘Google Suggest’ (@ubersuggest on Twitter).

6. Write for humans, not robots

Like I said, whilst it’s good to have SEO on your radar, at the end of the day, write your headlines for your readers, not the search engines. If a keyword fits nicely, use it. If it doesn’t, don’t. If the humans like your title, the search engines will like it by default.