5 Tips For A Perfect Blog Headline — One That Gets Clicks
Whether you’re talking about building authority on your blog or crafting compelling posts for an SEO company client, you can make your it more powerful by creating strong headlines. What makes a headline strong? The perfect blog headline will communicate quickly, capture a visitor’s interest and make the post easier to find by search engines. It acts as an accurate and interesting teaser for the rest of the post.
How do you make yours more effective? What goes into writing winning blog headlines? To help answer these questions, here’s a look at five tips for creating blog headlines that work:
Be specific. The more laser-focused your headline, the better it communicates to readers what it will cover. Take this post, for example. If the headline had been, simply, “Blog Headlines,” you would have had a general idea of the subject matter — but you wouldn’t know if the post was about the history of blog headlines, examples of good headlines, examples of bad headlines, tips on writing headlines, or none or all of the above. A specific headline gives readers specific expectations — so it attracts the people who are interested in what it truly provides.
Clarify and categorize. If your blog post fits into a specific type of content, such as a new report, an interview, an infographic or a slideshow, add that clarification in brackets after your post title. If you’re writing about a new study on infant formula, for example, the headline might be: “How Infant Formula Boosts Brain Development [New Study].” Why is this worth trying? According to research from HubSpot, headlines with bracketed clarifications perform 38 percent better than those without them.
Keep it short. When it comes to blog headlines, more isn’t always better. Stuffing a headline with extraneous words only makes it easier to lose readers. What’s the sweet spot? It depends. According to research from CoSchedule, the ideal length is 11 words — but it’s not a hard-and-fast rule. Other research, from Content Marketing Institute, says to stick to no more than 10 words. In different industries or for different audiences, shorter or longer headlines may perform best. So, whether you’re writing for your site or a client’s, test different headline lengths with different posts, and observe click-through rates.
Include relevant keywords. To optimize a blog post for search engines, you want to include relevant keywords in both the headline and body copy. What keywords are best? Think about words or phrases your audience is likely to be searching for, as these will be the keywords that bring them to your post. For best results, put keywords at the beginning of your headline to catch the attention of search engines.
Use numbers. The human brain likes numbers, which organize information into a logical order. When you want a headline to grab the attention of readers who are quickly scanning and deciding where or where not to click, include a number. Note, also, according to FastCo Design, round numbers typically work best, as they’re how humans naturally group amounts.
Blogs are a mainstay for freelance writers — so when you’re crafting copy for your next post, keep the five headline tips above in mind! By writing headlines that draw attention and get more clicks, you can generate more traffic to your content and improve your writing results.
Author bio: Shanna Mallon is a contributing writer for Straight North, one of Chicago’s top Internet marketing agencies. She’s also been a freelance writer since 2007.