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When Google Changes Your Title Tag to an Alternative Title Tag...


google search meta title

We have all used meta title tags as one of our focal points of specified seo per page. Along with H1 tags - they are SEO for Beginners - and a DUH factor. However, many have specified their title tags and in researching their client’s rankings they discovered that the title tags were not used as the title in the Google Search Results. Which then means that Google is reparsing it to what they feel the site should be titled based on its content. Which is fine - if you don’t want control over debatably the most effective seo piece on a page.

So the question begs to be asked - what can you do to make sure you aren’t losing control of your title tag?

The answer is simple - learn what makes Google decide to change your Title Meta Tag and stop it before it happens.

Google has stated that this happens due to the following reasons:

  • meta title tag with a lack of relevance to page content
  • no meta title tag
  • non-descriptive meta title tag
  • too long of a meta title tag
  • duplicate meta title tags or only minor modifications to a boilerplate title tag
  • hard to read meta title tag

So we then look to the statements from Google that focus us to what makes a good meta title tag:

  • make sure every page has a meta title tag
  • make sure every page has a unique meta title tag
  • make sure every web page has a meta title tag that describes specifically what is discussed on that page
  • make sure every meta title tag is short but descriptive
  • make sure your meta title tag is not spammy or look like keyword stuffing (like using variations of the same word)
  • make sure you dont use boilerplate where only one or two words is changed on each title
  • put your company name or brand on every title to brand your meta title tag (but concisely)

Remember - if you sign up for a google Webmaster account you can let the app check your site for html improvements including problems with any meta title tags. Give it a whirl if you haven't yet. But make sure your meta title tags stay within your control. Good Luck!


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kimfooyoung About The Author
Kim Young is Founder, CEO, and a developer at Foo - a web development company based in Wesley Chapel, Florida. She can also be found on . With over 16 years of experience as a web developer, Kim is excited to share with you tidbits that she has picked up along the way. Kim prioritizes continuing education and out of box thinking in order to bring the most valuable solution to Fooweb's clients.


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