I have several writers who write content for my websites. One of the things they constantly have is that they come up with page titles that are not good enough. Sometimes it’s trivial but sometimes it does pose a siginficant problem with regards to SEO.
For example, in this article: http://www.bintley.com/blog/the-comprehensive-guide-to-choosing-the-right-short-range-airsoft-gun/
The title is so long with primary keywords pushed far to the end that they may probably never show up in Google search results.
I then asked him to use very specific keywords at the beginning of the title and mentioned that people would never search for phrases such as “the importance of” or “the comprehensive guide to”, etc.
Here’s my follow-up letter to his doubts regarding why and how:
For example, change
“The Comprehensive Guide to Choosing the Right Short Range Airsoft Gun”
“Find the Right Short Range Airsoft Gun”
“Short Range Airsoft Guns – Which one is right for me?”
I just confirmed with Google adwords keyword tool that the monthly search volume for a broad phrase of “comprehensive guide to” is so low that they are pretty much worthless and more so when combined with other keywords at the end yet you are using it as the first few words in the title of this article.
Check out this ranking factors correlation: http://www.seomoz.org/article/search-ranking-factors#metrics-6
The first few words in the page title plays the largest role / has the most impact for ranking a specific phrase in SE. Therefore, writing a very very specific keywords-first title is crucial in writing for the SE and web visitors. A title that doesn’t correctly stand for the content of the article or one that is vague or pretentious is a disaster. For instance, this article is by no means a Comprehensive Guide, so just stick to smaller words such as “How to”, “My Advice on” etc. and better not too long as they are taking precious space in the title, especially the leading part.