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page titles
importance of word placement

 3:57 pm on Jan 16, 2002 (gmt 0)

Good morning,

I was wondering, if I have a site with hundreds of pages, should the titles of these pages necessarily include the name of the company? If so, what comes first, the relevant content on that page or the company name?

eg, what would be better:

green beans and rice by the ton--the rice company
the rice company-- green beans and rice by the ton

or does it really matter?




 4:31 pm on Jan 16, 2002 (gmt 0)

I allways try to put the most important keyword first in the title. In most SE's the title tag is very important and the prominince of the keyword also.
I optimize my pages for few keywords (max 3), this way my titles are relative short, with the keyword(s) and compagny name.


 4:36 pm on Jan 16, 2002 (gmt 0)

thanks for the tip bufferzone.


Michael Weir

 5:44 pm on Jan 16, 2002 (gmt 0)

remind me to keep my distance from you, eatfriedbeans. :)

...Which keywords are you marketing more? Rice? Green beans?

(is this the actual content or just a sample of word placement in meta tags?)

IF RICE, try:

The Rice Company - rice and green beans by the ton.

Obviously, for every search engine you will have to optimize in different ways. Make gateway pages optimizing RICE or GREEN BEANS uniquely. Also, does anybody know, is it an okay idea to use hyphens in meta tags? I try not to for some reason but I don't know why.


 5:58 pm on Jan 16, 2002 (gmt 0)

No, I'm not actually selling rice or beans, but I seem to make reference to these two quite frequently....

What you said makes sense. I think I get it.

Correct me if I'm wrong, but gateway pages are duplicate pages with slightly different URL's and titles. Correct?
Isn't this perceived as spam in some instances?



Michael Weir

 6:16 pm on Jan 16, 2002 (gmt 0)

Yes. A gateway page is a page built with a specific keyphrase in mind designed to rank well on the targeted search engine. You should emulate high ranking pages from the SERPS of the engine you're targeting. It's optimizing, not spam (unless you put spammy elements in your gateways).


 6:30 pm on Jan 16, 2002 (gmt 0)

Yes, if you make the doorway, gateway, or hallway pages as duplicate pages that are only slightly different, then you run the risk of getting nailed.

Michael Weir

 6:33 pm on Jan 16, 2002 (gmt 0)

You will be fine if you target spidering search engines, such as altavista, alltheweb, etc.


 7:16 pm on Jan 16, 2002 (gmt 0)

"you run the risk of getting nailed" & "You will be fine"

The duplicate content issue falls into one of SEO's gray areas. Although several engines have filters for dupe content their effectiveness is easily debateable.

A couple things to remember:

1. The more content that you change the safer you will be when the spam filters are on the prowl.

2. The more gateways that you build... the more likely you'll be put under the microscope... (if your just building a couple a month your probably flying under their radar... if your building hundreds you better watch out)..


 7:27 pm on Jan 16, 2002 (gmt 0)

As for the location of the keyword phrase in the title, looking through serps, it seems to make little difference. In fact, if I were to guess that there was a slight effect, it seems to me that yahoo and google like the keyword phrase starting at the second word in the title. Either way, I never worry about it and simply use whatever order seems more appropriate from the user's perspective on that page.

Michael Weir

 7:40 pm on Jan 16, 2002 (gmt 0)

>>>>>>it seems to me that yahoo and google like the keyword phrase starting at the second word in the title.

I agree with you on this. I just did a search on yahoo using a two word phrase. The first two results have three word titles with the search phrase being the second and third words. The number 3 result's title contains four words, with the last two words being the search phrase. Oddly, the 5th result is just like the 1st and 2nd - it contains 3 words in the title with the second and third words being the search phrase. It would seem that yahoo particularly favors such word/title placement, but the keyword weight and frequency in the description also play a big role in determining how your site will be ranked in their directory.

The puzzling aspect of this certain search is, the number one site in the results page contains only one of the words in the search phrase TWICE. Hmmmm....

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