If you’re using search engines to drive traffic to your company’s website, then you probably already know how important search engine optimization (SEO) is to your online growth.
While SEO strategy tends to focus on increasing your presence in the search engines, optimizing your website for high search engine click-through-rates (CTR) is equally important. In the following paragraphs, you’ll learn how to do exactly that.
Enhancing Your Search Results
Google and other search engines give you a number of ways to customize your company’s listings in search results. However, for now we’ll be focusing on the two most impactful elements, which will be outlined below:
- Page Title – Your page title is your “SEO headline” and can be found in the <title> tag of each page’s code, between the <head> tags. Currently, Google will display approximately 65 characters.
- Meta Description – Your meta description controls the excerpt that follows your SEO headline, and should contain no more than 136-156 characters. Your meta description can be customized by editing or adding the following code between the <head> tags of a page: <meta name=”description” content=”Your Excerpt Here”/>
Most content management systems make editing these easy, without having to mess around with code.
You only have 65 character of flexibility with your page title, and it should contain your target keywords, which further limits your options. Your meta description, however, affords you plenty of opportunity to strike a balance between SEO-friendly and human-friendly.
By human-friendly, I mean your meta description should catch the attention of searchers, draw them in, and convey the value that awaits them on the other side of their click. Keep in mind that these should be used in conjunction with proper on-site SEO, not as a replacement.
Increase Your Search Engine Traffic with These 3 Tips
Draw attention to your listing using keywords
When someone searches for a keyword or phrase, that keyword or phrase gets highlighted in the results.
Use this to your advantage while crafting your meta descriptions, to draw attention to your listing, and easily convey that your page has what they’re looking for. But make sure you don’t overdo it.
You can see this in action by looking at my search for “SEO Beaver” in the screenshot above.
Googlers and other search engine users are looking for solutions, so your meta description should reflect that you actually have what they’re looking for.
Sweeten the deal by making them a specific offer, even if it’s just a free estimate or white paper.
Include a call-to-action
Similarly, inviting searchers to visit your website, may result in them actually doing it. Sometimes the addition of a simple “Click here to…” can have a profound effect on your search engine CTR.
Better yet, include the number to your sales department, and invite customers to contact you, without even having to visit your website.
I recently released a checklist that helps you create a strong call-to-action, much of which can be applied to SEO and meta descriptions.
Apply these three tips when updating your meta descriptions, or have us do it for you, and watch your CTR and traffic grow.