In today’s web environment, just creating a good content is not enough for your content marketing efforts. While web design companies try hard to maintain a steady stream of original and relevant content, their efforts are far from being satisfactory. Good content can always be missed, or ignored, especially if it doesn’t have an eye-catching headlines that can convince the reader to take their time out and read your blog or article. If we go by reader’s pattern, the number of people just reading headlines is five times as compared to those who read the entire text.
So, what makes a headline effective? And, how can you make sure that you get the maximum results out of it? What are the basics that bloggers and website owners must know to create effective and SEO friendly headlines that will bring you more traffic?
Let us try to answer these questions.
Identify your target audience
The first and most crucial step in creating an online content is to identify your target audience. You must know the people who are going to read your post or blog. Try to get in their shoes- think as they do and make use of words that they are most likely to use in any given search.Tell your reader why they need to go through what you have. Make educated guesses on how an average online user will come to know about your product or service.
For example, if you have a website that sells cookware and kitchen appliances, you can create your blog on topics like culinary trends, latest additions in kitchenware, and cooking tips for special occasions.
If you are writing a post on some special recipe for Diwali that you want to be read by both search engine and your audience, then headlines like “Tasty and Delicious Food Items” will not give you the traffic you desire. People looking for Diwali recipe will never find your post.
A more attention grabbing headline can be “Diwali Recipe: Impress your guests with these easy to cook food items”.
This headline is clear in its message and tells the reader what this article is all about adding an intrinsic value to the content.
How to write the perfect headline?
“On an average, 8 out of 10 people are going to read your headline copy but only 2 will go on to read the rest”. By now you must be getting some idea on how important it is to write a perfect headline.
Use of trigger words can come handy to help you in motivating your audience to go through your article. You can make use of some of these trigger words if you like:
Including these words in your headline will not only help you to connect with your audience but hopefully, make them to come back looking for more.
Headlines and SEO
Over the recent years, search engines have started using complex algorithms, but they still look for keywords and phrases to index and categorize content.
When crating a headline that can give you readers, it is important to keep search engine bots in mind and place specific keywords regularly within your headline.
Looking at our previous example we can clearly see that the article is trying to focus on recipes for Diwali. The term “Diwali recipe” is prominently placed in the front of the headline making things clear for both search engines as well as readers.
The second part of the headline,”Impress your guests with these easy to cook food items” further add to the value of the article and identifies the article as an easy to follow recipe guide.
Benefit driven Headlines
A benefit driven headline is one of the most important tool for both SEO as well as for grabbing the attention of online users.
As more and more direct queries are taken by search engines, users have naturally gravitated towards more common and conversational search terms. People ask direct questions from Google like, “Where can I find cheap tech gadgets in Kolkata” or “How can I remove dents from my car”.
Effective headlines readily use these conversational terms to display your content for the relevant search term. The Hummingbird update from Google focuses on these conversational search terms to read the user’s intentions and is the main thing behind search results today.
Creating an effective headline is more of an art and requires some time along with a lot of practice.
All you need is to think like your target audience and satisfy your reader’s informational needs while making the effective use of keywords. After some trial and error, you will soon be creating headlines that can serve the search engines and bring in more readers. In case you need, you can also take help of some of the best website designing and development companies in Kolkata that can create stunning headlines for your post or article.