[thelist] SEO vs Usability - order of title tag

jono at charlestonwebsolutions.com jono at charlestonwebsolutions.com
Mon Jul 24 06:22:56 CDT 2006

> According to the SEO-centric viewpoint, the most important keywords should
> always be at the front of the title tag, hence the name of the company
> should be at the end.

Don't let SEO hijack your site's usability.  Before Google came along, and
before SEO was a buzz word, page titles served as, well, page titles.  Now
developers, or your current boss, want to make the title act as a tool for
SEO before, before it serves its main purpose - being the page's title. 
Approach the page title as you would before SEO was such a huge focus.

Page titles are there for people like you and me, not Search Engines. 
Search Engines just happen to really like page titles.

On the homepage, the company name serves as a branding tool to your end
users.  Your name is part of your brand, and establishing your brand is
very important.  Your brand should shine more than ever on your home page;
for this reason, I'd say to put the Company ‘s name in the title first on
the home page, boosting brand recognition.

Also, in most cases, the homepage serves as a starting point, it is not a
page that people come and read for 2 or 3 minutes - in most cases.  Your
homepage will get more hits than most other pages, usually the homepage
just serves as a starting point.  The content users are looking for on
Search Engines will most likely live on subpages, where matching page
titles to header tags and content will help users with finding what they
want, and SEO.

Phew, that's a bit random for a reply, but I've got about 2 minutes before
I gotta’ run out the door.  It'll be great to see what others think.

Imagine if nobody put their company name first in the title tag, then it
would make Search Engine Results much harder to wade through and
select...confusing both Search Engines, ad the Search Engine’s users -
that's a lose-lose situation.

I agree with Neilsen, it makes the most sense to your end users, and to
search engines.  "If you build it (right), they will come."

Jono Young
Designer | Developer | Illustrator
Charleston Web Solutions
Bringing Higher Standards to the Lowcountry

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