The headline of an article is arguably one of the most important parts of an article. Since this is what is going to predominantly show on search results and on your website, it’s so important that you have a headline that visitors want to click.
If you want to increase the CTR of your headlines, I wanted to share a handful of tips that have worked best with my website.
#1 Longer Headlines Sell
Research has shown that the longer your headline is, the more clicks you can potentially get. Now, you don’t want to make your headlines 20 words long, but instead, try to keep it around 8-10 words. Experts claims that eight is the magic number.
#2 Odd Numbers
Don’t stick with the boring “5 ways…” or “10 ways…” These numbers are overplayed and people see them all over the place. While it doesn’t hurt to have a top 5 list, you’re going to have to spice it up if you want to go that route. So instead of doing something along the lines of “Top 5 Landmarks in Arizona,” you could do something like “12 Arizona Landmarks You’ll Never Forget.” Which one would you click on?
#3 Colons and Hyphens
Surprisingly, when you add a colon or dash in your title, it can increase your CTR by more than 10 percent! It sounds silly, but you may want to try it next time. So, again, using the example mentioned above, we could use a title like “Arizona: 12 Landmarks That Blew Me Away.”
If you’re into SEO, most people that search often want an answer to their question. So, let’s say that someone was searching for “What is the best landmark in Arizona?” If your title was this question, they would be more likely to click on this, than the headlines we mentioned above. So if your article is answering a question, don’t be afraid to list your question as the title.
#5 Use Keywords
On the SEO side, the more targeted keywords you have in your title, the better your chances can become for those long-tail keywords. Yes, I know there are other SEO factors involved, however, what I’m trying to get at is that you should avoid the filler words. Your headlines should be filled with as many targeted keywords as possible, like “Phoenix, Arizona – 12 Cheap City Landmarks That Impress.”
#6 Know your Types
I touched upon the “question” method above. Aside from answering a question, other types of headlines that increase your CTR can include how-to articles, numbers, addressing the reader and a normal headline that is tempting to click on. Here are some examples:
• How-to: “How to Find Arizona Landmarks Worth the Money”
• Numbers: “22 Arizona Landmarks Everyone Should See”
• Addressing: “Ways These 8 Landmarks Will Change your Outlook on Arizona”
• Regular: “Landmarks in Arizona That You Probably Haven’t Heard Of”
Out of these headlines, research has shown that numbers, followed by
addressing the reader, received the highest CTR numbers.
#7 Know your Audience
Lastly, be sure to know who you are trying to target. If you’re trying to target the senior citizen community, for example, it probably wouldn’t be ideal to use a headline like “12 Children Friendly Arizona Landmarks.”
Instead, something along the lines of “11 Landmarks That Seniors can Save On.” Targeting the right audience can bring in more ad revenue and new subscribers.