This is a guest contribution from Jackson Nwachukwu, lead blogger at DailyTipsDiary.com.
You’ve just been inspired and you’re ready to write the blog post you hope will be a hit.
The title not might be the first step in your planning process but it’s fair to say that most people automatically start thinking about what they will call their hit post.
After all, you don’t just want any blog title. You want one of those blog titles that gets readers excited before they’ve opened your post.
An average of 8 readers out of 10 will read a blog post title, while less than 3 out of the same 10 readers will read the rest of the article. This simple statistic shows how your post title greatly affects the entire content of your post.
So you stop.
In order to quickly get a reader’s attention, you need to find smart ways of coming up with ckickable blog titles.
Imagine a reader typing a few keywords on Google search engine. Google returns a list of search results and your post title has emerged along side with other related blogs in your niche. What do you think your reader does first?
It’s very simple. He or she will scan through the list and choose for the best post title. Based on my “3E’s Blogging Rule – exposure, experience and expertise, here are 5 tips that will help you write irresistibly clickable blog post titles.
1. Let Passion in
Search engines aren’t the main audience you need to write for, so it’s important to let some passion into your post title.
I made passion first on the list because it can determine the mindset your readers has when they open your post.
You can’t do well at something you have no love for and the same applies to writing a blog post. The only way to breathe life into a post title is to let passion take control of your writing. Once there is passion every other ingredient needed to write a catchy post title will surface.
2. Keep it Short but Focused
Your primary reason for writing a blog post is getting people to read it. Right?
To help connect readers to your blog post, you need a post title that clearly spells out what the post is about. The era of writing super long titles is over. When writing your post title, try to keep it short but also informative and compelling.
These two titles can give you a heads up:
A post title like “5 Tips To Writing Irresistibly Clickable Blog Titles“ is much better compared to “Writing a Post Title: Top 5 Tips on How To Write A Post Title That is Clickable”.
3. Strike a Balance on Keywords Used in the Post Title
When it comes to thinking about SEO, using keywords in your blog title is advised But it’s important not to overdo it. A clickable post title should makes sense and be easy to read so don’t try to stuff awkward keywords into your title.
Looking at our two blog post titles again. The first title has eight words while the second has later has 17. In most cases, post titles with 10 words containing at least 2 keywords is considered SEO rich and will do better both in ranking and in attracting the attention of readers.
4. Make the Grammar look Good
Just because search engines don’t care about grammar doesn’t mean you shouldn’t. Today, every reader wants to read well-structured blog posts that includes good grammar!
It becomes even more important when writing your post title because that is the first thing a reader will read before deciding on whether to read further or not.
More than once I have skipped over an article because of the title. If you don’t pay attention to grammar, you never know how many readers click away without reading your posts.
5. Know Which Special Characters to Use on your Post Title
There are handful of special characters you can use on your post title and those that I consider a no use characters.
The following special characters can be added in post titles: single dash (-), colon (:), question mark (?), exclamation mark (!)
- The single dash (-) can be used to separate words in post headline
- The colon (:) same goes for the colon, it can be used to separate words in titles
- The question mark (?) this usually used when a title begs an answer, which means the title itself, is a question.
- The exclamation point (!) this character is used when a title is meant to make the reader excited about a thing.
The following special characters CANNOT and SHOULD NOT be added in post titles: Ampersands (&), Greater than/Less than Symbols (< and >), the Pound Sign or Hash (#) the “At” Symbol (@).
Here is a Breakdown of these NO USE special characters
Ampersands (&) : This makes your post title URL to error out because you had the web browser confused as to detecting where your HTML code either begins or ends
“At” Symbol (@): The “At” Symbol (@) is a commonly used character associated with email addresses. However, when it’s written as @ in post title URL, it confuses the web browser or RSS reader which interprets it as part of an email address rather than a web address.
Greater Than and Less Than Symbols (< and >): The two are used as tags to enclose HTML elements. This is usually used in text formatting, styling and other mark up languages and these characters, when used on your post title, cuts off your title URL.
Pound Sign or Hash (#): This character works specifically on links in certain sections of a webpage.
Let’s see how this works. When you look at the comments on each post written on ProBlogger, it has this Hash (#) symbol. So I picked this post:
Don’t Be Lazy: 9 Ways to Blog Smarter and Harder. When you click on the comment stats or icon on post pages, to access the comments on this post, you will see the link look like this http://www.problogger.net/archives/2013/06/18/9-ways-to-blog-smarter-and-harder/comment-page-1/#comment-5204560 .
Hope you have seen the Hash (#) attached to the suffix of the post link? Now imagine you added this tag on your post title. You will confuse the browser by directing you to the comment page!
In a nutshell, using any of these special characters (apart from the ones I specified earlier) on your post title kills your chances of getting your blog post translated properly by web browsers and above all confuses your readers.
There is no right way to write blog post titles. However, learning writing tips like these will put you ten steps ahead of your competitors.
Which other methods have you been using to write blog post titles that attract readers?
Jackson Nwachukwu is an entrepreneur, a freelance writer and the founder of Content Practical Media. Are you looking for a creative web content writer or copywriter to help grow your business website/blog’s traffic and increase sales? Hire Jackson to write for you.