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How to write good page and post titles

     
8:49 pm on Mar 26, 2002 (gmt 0)

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WebmasterWorld Administrator brett_tabke is a WebmasterWorld Top Contributor of All Time 10+ Year Member Top Contributors Of The Month

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As we've gotten busier, the need for good titles becomes more critical. Some resource reading on page titles:

[useit.com...]

A great PDF from the U. of Penn library:
[garfield.library.upenn.edu...]

Thanks to Paynt for the links.



Why are Titles so important?

Because titles show up on :

on the active list,
they go on the title of the page,
they get indexed by search engines,
they go into the site search engine, and finally
they go into new post notifications.

They are used by everyone when viewing forums.

9:44 pm on Mar 26, 2002 (gmt 0)

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WebmasterWorld Senior Member mivox is a WebmasterWorld Top Contributor of All Time 10+ Year Member

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From a poster's perspective: If you have a problem you can't quite figure out, which page title do you think will better assist knowledgable people in finding your questions so they may provide you with wise, helpful and free (!) answers:

This $#*$&^#*$ Program is SOOO Stinky!
NN makes my page look funny! HELP!

...or...

Need help with table margins...
Netscape splits up my carefully sliced graphics!

Not only will the second title make more sense to potentialy helpful answer-mongers hunting for people to enlighten, but when someone else has the same problem you have, and they search for answers on Google, the WebmasterWorld site search, or elsewhere, they may actually find your thread, thanks to your wonderful, descriptive, keyword-rich title and description!

9:52 pm on Mar 26, 2002 (gmt 0)

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Agreed. A title is the summarisation of information that it presents, the more succinct and understandable by the greatest amount of people, the better.

Hence, think about title's, instead of doing what i do, which is think of something i need to know or wish to inform about, and making a stupid title, which does eventually get another post, but i tell you the forums are a lonely place when u don't give an informtative and recognisable title.

10:10 pm on Mar 26, 2002 (gmt 0)

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WebmasterWorld Senior Member macguru is a WebmasterWorld Top Contributor of All Time 10+ Year Member

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I like to check if a topic was covered in some forum before asking a newbie question. The site search [searchengineworld.com] and library [webmasterworld.com] are usually of some great help to get a fast answer. Using those and checking for recent posts in relevant forum before posting contribute to improve the signal/noise ratio of the board.

I choose to read topics here, just as Joe Surfer picks a site on some SERP.

5:45 am on Mar 28, 2002 (gmt 0)

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WebmasterWorld Administrator brett_tabke is a WebmasterWorld Top Contributor of All Time 10+ Year Member Top Contributors Of The Month

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I am considering changing the post compose/reply form to the following:

<title>. input form </title>
<meta desc...content =". input form">
<body>post text area input</body>

I wonder if that will jog people into thinking of post titles as page titles?

2:57 am on Mar 30, 2002 (gmt 0)

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That just may do the trick Brett... but then again, ya never know. ;)

Good descriptive titles should come easy. But somehow I believe that those who have difficulty describing a topic regarding a particular problem, may not have thought the problem through to begin with. :)