How to choose the right article title

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It can sometimes be hard to choose the right title for a software review. We normally use the format:

Best Free XXXXX Program
-or-
Best Free XXXXX Software

Or, for a tutorial:
How To Use Firefox
 

Choosing the probable best title
First, look for terms that may be relevant. Use Google and type in a typical search request, slowly, and look at the variations that the Ajax search-suggest function provides - the numbers against the terms are the numbers of pages that are relevant for this term, ie competing pages. Usually, the term / page with the highest numbers is a good bet. List the variations.

So you might type <twin monitor software> or something, slowly, and see what the Ajax throws up.

Go to some pages and look for similar terms that might be better. Google those terms and check the competing page numbers.

Then check which is the best title by going here:
https://adwords.google.com/select/KeywordToolExternal

...and entering lots of variations. Choose the term with the highest global monthly traffic, and put 'best free' in front of it.

This process gives you what is probably the best title though you don't know for sure till 3 or 4 months down the road...

  

Using variations
Now you have to try and get some of those variations in, so that people searching for the same thing but by another name will come to your page. The opportunities you might have are listed here:

metadata
header tagline
keywording
para 1 variants
subheadings
image names
footer tags

So, you can use some of the possible variations by getting them in at the places listed. In the metadata is a good place but currently we have no way to do that. A header tagline is a good place if you have a strong alternative title that you really want to include. In the following examples we're looking for a page title for a review of multi-monitor software.

Here's a page title followed by a tagline: 

   Best Free Multi Monitor Program

Free window mover and window arranger software

 
The page title is placed on the page automatically, you will need to make the 'tagline' your first line of text, and format it so it looks right - maybe bold it as shown above.

Note that sometimes the best choice is 'Best Free XXXXXX Software', and sometimes it's 'Best Free XXXXXX Program', there doesn't seem to be any logic to this, whichever comes out best in your preliminary searches.

Subheadings are bolded or H4 mini-headings for separate topic paragraphs on your page. They are an excellent way to get keyword / title variants in.

Para 1 variants - in your first paragraph, you can introduce the subject and get some alt keywords in. Keywords are the words that people type into the search engine box in order to find the best pages.

If you have some images in your article then you have 4 opportunities for a keyword or alternative name:

  • the image filename [eg multi-monitor.jpg]
  • the alt tag [Whizzo window arranger]
  • the image title [Whizzo twin monitor arrangement]
  • a caption if used [Here is a multi-monitor set-up]


And if all else fails and you still have keywords left over or didn't get them in enough, then use some footer tags. There is no required format for this except to place them last thing, without confusing readers. So you could do it like this (but it's not a rule or anything):

Tags: best free multi monitor software, free twin screen program, best window arranger program, window mover software

 

Results
After about 18 days, google the topic and see where your page is in the results. If it's placed well, to keep it high do some links to the page. A page will appear in the results first in a higher position than its 'correct' place. It then slides down to the position it will remain at. To keep it high, get links pointing at it. You can create links by doing social bookmarks, Yahoo Answers, etc. If it's not placed well in the results - do even more links :)

A page can be raised in the results at any time by creating anchor text links to that page - if the page is for twin monitor programs, get links that say 'twin monitor programs', with those words hyperlinked to the page. The best link is one with anchor text of the page title and points at the page. A link that is not so good says 'click here' and points to the domain, ie the front page of the site.

If your page is for 'Butte City Pavement Artist' you won't need a lot of links, to move up the rankings. If it's for 'Car Insurance' you'll need a cartload :)