Click-through rate (CTR) isn’t a topic that gets many people fired up… but we can’t emphasize enough just how important a metric CTR is. Clicks lead to sales and conversions, and earning that click, whether through paid social advertising or content marketing, is one of the toughest hurdles to overcome. Once you figure out the formulas that work on your audience, you’ve pushed past one of your biggest obstacles to selling online.

If you’re looking to improve your organic click-through rate, don’t miss this new infographic from Louis Foong (posted in full at the bottom of this blog).

  1. Identify your lowest CTR content. Grab your search analytics from Google and plot your organic search CTR against your organic ranking in Excel. Use this graph to identify your top 10% and bottom 10% keyword/pages. Don’t mess with the “unicorns” (your top 10%). Work on improving the “donkeys” (bottom 10%). Doing this can increase clicks by 6x.
  2. Dump “keyword heavy” title templates. You know what inspires a click? Titles that aren’t blatantly keyword-stuffed! Stop this practice.
  3. Get emotional. Emotional hooks drive clicks. You might think SEO is all science, but in actuality there are strong elements of both science and artistry in search engine optimization.
  4. Get relatable. It’s time to start writing like a human, not an SEO robot. Maybe your SEO-heavy title will get better rankings than a “non-SEO” title, but will it get clicks? Is it relatable? If not, then a high ranking doesn’t do you much good. Instead, write from a specific perspective. Foong gives the examples of The Comedian, The Feel Good Friend, The Hero or Villain, and The Bearer of Bad News.
  5. Use a numbered list. They boost CTR by 36%. (There’s a reason why we have a number in the title of this post, right?)
  6. Use a proven headline template. The most engaging articles on the internet use a title format like this: number + adjective + content type + subject.
  7. Use “power words” in your description tag. Words like “amazing,” “instant,” and “premium” can go a long way toward earning that click.
  8. Use descriptive URLs. Microsoft found that descriptive URLs get 25% more clicks than generic URLs. If you’re using WordPress or any other similar website builder, there should be a setting to do this automatically for new pages and blog posts you write.
  9. Experiment with different headlines. Play with capitalization, ellipses, punctuation, emojis and other options.
  10. Test out headline ideas on AdWords. If you have a really important piece of content in the works, test it out with different headlines on AdWords.
  11. Change and test the headline on Facebook. The same emotional appeals that work on Facebook will work in Google search. Facebook is a great free way to test out your titles.

Check out the full infographic below, and feel free to share some tips of your own with the community in the comments section.