A Headline of your blog or article is like any teaser of a movie. How a teaser sets the audience to want to go to the theatre to see the movie, good headlines or titles do the same job for your blogs. They should have a teasing quality to make the readers click your title to peek inside your article.
Why a good headline or title is essential for a blog?
If you are searching for information on the internet, what is the first thing are you going to do?
You type the search term which you think is the most relevant string of words, also known as a keyword, which fits your desired information. A list of similar results appears on that keyword search.
The browser tries to find the content with its algorithm and provides the most relevant information. But, out of the vast pool of search results, you usually browse the first few titles.
What grabs your attention is the title which is closest to what you want or creates curiosity. Usually, a good title is a gateway to your website out of the thousands of sites serving similar content. A catchy title will cut out the noise and grab reader’s attention and compel him to click the link.
Writing Awesome Headlines is one of the most important things when it comes to driving traffic to your website today.
Killer Headlines can dramatically change how much traffic you get. Readers will commit to clicking the better headlines irrelevant of its ranking on the page. They help in beating your competitors too. Many times better headlines get more traffic than good content. That is the power of writing excellent titles.
Winning headlines with excellent content are shared more often than the weaker ones.
If you don’t have a compelling headline, it doesn’t matter how valuable your article might be; it is similar to an explosive book with a weak title.
Here are the 11 powerful techniques to create catchy and magnetic headlines or titles for your blog.
1. Straightforward and Simple:
Direct and straightforward titles work the best than the salesy and spammy ones. The titles usually avoid jargons and complex structuring of words. Readers appreciate it more because it promises them a direct solution to what they are searching without wasting time.
Use words that get straight to the point, easy to comprehend and promise what the content of the article promises to the readers.
An example can be – “List of Chiropractors in Sydney.”
2. Make it Unique:
You should develop a habit of researching your competition before writing your content and headline. If you are targeting a particular subject of concern, search the possible keywords and check the top 4 to 5 articles.
First, study their titles and content. Then, you present your article in a way that can beat all the articles concerning quality and size. Afterward, construct your title using the mentioned techniques which the readers would want to click. Always strive to make it unique.
Uniqueness adds that refreshing feel to your title among the other similar ones.
For Example – keyword is – best wireless earphones
Most of the ones used can be “Best Wireless Earphones,” “Best wireless earphone review” or Top 5 wireless earphones in2018.”
You can always give a twist to it by writing:
“I tested 18 wireless earphones. This one is my favorite”.
This headline adds a personal touch and builds trust to your headline. Readers will think you have gone an extra mile to get the best one for them.
3. Keyword Based:
Earlier we discussed what a keyword is. So, if you are writing an article based on a specific keyword, it is wise to mention the keyword string as it is in the title too. The search engines are more likely to pick that keyword and rank them higher.
Higher rankings lead to higher traffic. But, never use keywords on the titles by force so that it sounds grammatically wrong or forced. Organically use them by mixing with the other techniques mentioned in this blog.
For example: If your keyword is – “Photoshop mattes.”
You can write the headline as – “3 Unique ways to create perfect mattes in Photoshop.”
The title encompasses the keyword but doesn’t look forced. In fact, using the other techniques, your title will look far better than titles like – “What are Photoshop mattes?” or “Photoshop mattes creation.”
4. Astonishing Questions:
Asking gaping questions especially strange and funny ones create much curiosity in the reader’s mind. They get instantly involved.
These titles create a curiosity gap and leave the reader wanting more. They will be eager to discover the answers, and they want to click through to read the content.
Few examples of this type:
“ Why are you still using Office 97?”
“Is you strong password strong enough?”
5. Playing the Number Game:
Numbers play a crucial role when used in titles. It is strange but maybe because our brain has an affinity to process numbers quickly, which is why they are useful.
Moreover, headlines with numbers give the users an impression that the content can be quantified and direct. Numbers increase focus during reading. The readers expect the information to be in a list form and hence it will be quick and easy to consume. Using numbers in titles also boost your click-through rates.
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6. Sensational and Bold Titles:
Bold titles are the first to grab attention as they incorporate a shock value into the titles. It ensures an increase in the click-through rates (percentage of the number of chances a reader will click the link to the number of impressions or views).
Sensational headlines draw the reader immediately into the subject and give a sense of alertness to the content which they should not miss. Don’t hesitate to use controversial, provocative or opinionated proclamations.
Examples of these type of Headlines can be:
“5 common foods that can give you cancer?”
“Your bank account can be hacked if you don’t follow this.”
7. Summarize the Substance:
These headlines always state the main points of your article in the headline. It is quite similar to the straightforward and simple technique, but the headline is more elaborate and almost gives away the content inside.
But these titles need to be handled better to get the reader to click although he feels he has the answer to his question in the title itself. It requires a promise in the headlines that seduces the user to click the link.
One of the examples can be.
“ Bariatric surgery: Easiest way to get rid of obesity without exercise. Check out the best surgeons.”
8. Instruction Titles:
Another way of writing good titles is the instruction titles. Usually, they are the “What to do” or “How to do” titles that command or instruct the readers to solve a particular problem.
These can be highly effective as the titles parallel the readers’ quest. It meets their language and readers are bound to click these headlines that speak their words.
People have a penchant for asking questions. Their inquisitiveness will drive them to open and study the article, thereby escalating the traffic.
“How to drive more traffic to your website.”
“What is the best camera app for android phones?”
9. Making Offers:
These kinds of headlines tease the readers with some benefits that will encourage them to click and read the article. In addition to promising information about the article, the offers entice the reader to avail them.
Offer headlines are common among the e-commerce or affiliate websites. But it is also useful for the websites to increase its subscriber base by offering them something for free if they subscribe to their newsletter. Subscriptions lead to a constant flow of traffic, and it helps to brand the website as well.
Some offer titles can be:
“iPhone 9 launch announced! Get your prelaunch discount coupon here.”
“ Try renting furniture! The first month free.”
10. Create Urgency:
Creating urgency is another tested method to draw instant traffic. Using the fear of missing out technique (FOMO) in your title gives a chance for your article to shine over your competitors.
Instilling fear among your readers of missing the stated deadlines, or other suitable words that can be extremely effective in creating headlines with the sense of urgency will shoot up your click-through rates through the roof. Always remember not scam the readers by not obliging with the deadlines as it will break trust and it may not be successful the next time.
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“ If you are the among first 20 couples to book today, We offer you a free dinner.”
11. Create Enigma:
While, it is essential to communicate the main idea of your article in its headline, beware not to expose the information entirely, else users will have no interest in continuing with your information.
Certain catchphrase or mysterious elements around the title urges the readers to go beyond the headline and click impulsively to read the content.
“ 10 Photoshop secrets that no designer will tell you.”
“7 Things you must know before you apply for a job.”
By now we already know how vital crafting the headlines are. It not only helps you in getting more readers to your content but also gives you a competitive edge over other articles.
Another thing to keep in mind is never to write long titles. You may want to add that edge over competitors but usually titles more than 60 characters will not be seen in its entirety. It is always advisable to keep it few characters under 60. You can check your character numbers at http://lettercount.com/
To write eye-catching and effective headlines for your articles, apply the techniques mentioned above, and you will start seeing visitors pouring to your website. Always stress on direct communication. No deception will take your articles further so better be true. Be authentic. Adding a little sensationalism is all right.