Early morning you grab the newspaper, and unknowingly you choose to read the story that sparks your interest.
Do you know why?
It’s the attention grabbing HEADLINE that centred your focus to the news content.
When it comes to writing headlines for the web, the experience is no different.
With so much of information to consume, our interest and disinterest are decided by the headline of the content.
For bloggers, why good TITLE is so important?
- Search engines interpret the content of your blog post by parsing the headline.(it is a critical ranking parameter)
- Catchy titles for blogs make them viral on social networks.
- Magnetic headlines get high CTR in Search Engine Results Pages(SERPS)
Today, we shall learn the most important 6 Guidelines for Writing Attention Grabbing Headlines.
1.Have Number In The Headline and Boost the CTR.
Having a numbered Blog Post will improve click through rate (CTR).
Click Through Rate:
An individual who is presented with the bunch of results in search results, looking at the numbered blog post will give him a clear indication that content is rich with important points which are easy to scan and consume.
Secondly, your blog post with numbered headline will also increase the probability of getting ranked high in search results.
People are more aligned to numbered type of content (psychologically) and search engines will give them preference in ranking to deliver the best content to their users.
Here`s few statistics that proves NUMBER in the headline is the clear winner…
2.Have a Clear, Precise and Concise Headline – Don`t Confuse Readers.
Ensure Clarity: Reader should know what the content is.
Be Precise: Be to-the-point in your headline. Reader attentions span is shortest and would get micro with so much of information attack. Hence, you should be specific in crafting a good headline.
Concise: From SEO angle, you should have headline which falls under criteria below to gain the highest click through
- Character Count: 55 to 70 characters
- Word Count: 6 to 7 words
An excellent tool: coschedule.com makes our life easier by analysing the headline in-analysing provides insights of the metrics we need to improve.
Here are few metrics for of one my blog post: Benefits of Blogging-7 Profitable Reasons Unveiled.
3.Implement SHINE Principle – Make Headline Shine and Glitter.
SHINE Stands for:
E: Entertainment value
Specificity: Be specific and definite about the topic you would cover
” 5 Quick Ways to Write Content? “
Which type of content are you referring here? Looks generic…
Better version would be: ” 5 Quick Ways to Write Blog Post“ or “5 Quick Ways to Write a Novel.”
Helpfulness: Give readers reasons to read your blog post.
Solve their pain areas and teething problems. Aim to provide value to the reader in the headline itself.
Immediacy: Inject urgency in the headline.
Urgency will compel users to act fast and read your content.
Newsworthiness: Freshness is the key here.
Why would a reader view content which is already scanned by him earlier?
The headline should have news value.Here, I don`t mean to write an actual story but something which reader have never heard of.
Include words like Updated, Year, Finally, Revealed, Unveiled, At Last, Discovered, New Ways …, Latest, Announced, etc.
Including words above entices a visitor to read more about you blog post.
Entertainment value: You don`t want to switch off readers interest with boring and dry headlines.
Add some impact words or adjectives in the headline and spice it up.
4.Practice the Proven and Tested Formula for Creating Amazing Headlines.
[Number] + [Adjective] + [Keyword] + [Rationale] +[Benefit]
“ 21 Easy Tips To Write Powerful Headlines For Insane Traffic ”
Number: It enhances the readability of the content. People love to consume the step-by-step type content rather reading chunky paragraphs.
Adjective: It adds emphasis and punches to the headline.
Keyword: Critical. It attracts search engines attention and helps in ranking.
Rationale: Approach to deliver the content.For example: Tips, Reasons, Ways, Mistakes, Secrets, etc.
Benefit: WIIFM – what’s in it for me? Is the question to be answered?
Unless you state the promise in the form of true benefit, no readers will be bothered to give thought to read your content.
5.Type of Headlines You Should Be Aware – The Time-Tested Winners.
List Post: This type of headline attracts more readership and shares.
They are very specific, clear and to-the-point. People will look at the number in the headline and feel overwhelmed about easy to scan and digestible sections.
Having a large number adds immense value to the content.
- “5 ways to increase blog readership.”
- “51 ways to increase blog readership.”
Undoubtedly, the second headline would attract more eyeballs.
How to Type: These are the headlines which solve certain problem with the specific benefit.
It captivates people’s attention naturally because of its problem-solving aspect with the unique benefit.
Example: “How to Write High-Quality Blog Post In 30 Minutes“
A: How To: It’s clear. Headline delivers something which will aid the reader to achieve something or perform certain task.
B: High Quality: Adds Impact and promises to deliver more.
C: In 30 Minutes: Fastest way to achieve the goal – writing a blog post
Mistake Type: Adding a word “Mistake” in the headline alarms readers.
We always have a fear of landing in trouble waters with mistakes that can happen unknowingly.
Getting to know the mistakes up front makes us extra cautious.
“21 Common Mistakes a Newbie Blogger Should Avoid in First 6 Months”
- 21 Common Mistakes: We added number here, and we know its benefit. “Common Mistakes” alerts reader.A
- Newbie Blogger Should Avoid in First 6 Months: subtly infuses fear of “Failure” in the reader’s mind.
News Type: This type of headline is used to announce something newsworthy.
It can be a launch of new product or service or even improvising existing product.
“Introducing …A Free Keyword Research Tool To Retrieve Profitable Long Tail Keywords in 10 Minutes.”
Use words like. Just launched, Introducing, Finally, At Last…
6.Four Rules to Follow To Instigate Undivided Attention.
You have done all the hard work to create a fantastic headline.And now; it’s time to assess the effectiveness headline.
Assess the Effectiveness of Headline with 4 U Rules
Does your headline makes an impact and grabs reader’s attention?
Ok, let`s go through easy-to-follow rules generalised as: 4U`s that will aid us to achieve the said objective.
A: The headline should be Unique.
From SEO perspective, you would be using a keyword /key phrase in the headline.
But, does the headline noticeable and distinguished among others who covered the same topic?
It should be UNIQUE.Otherwise, your content will never get the attention it deserves.
B:It should be Ultra-Specific.
Avoid Generic Headline – Be precise and specific.
The headline which is generic in nature will have poor CTR.
Readers won`t know what exactly you are trying to convey and what is content that would be presented after they click on the headline.
The headline has to be precise and to-the-point.
- “10 Ways to Boost Blog Traffic Without SEO”
- “5 Tips to Write Blog Post in 1 Hour “
It is precise and specific giving the reader a clear indication of the type of content.
C.Headline Should Express Urgency.
Adding an urgency element provokes the reader to ACT fast.
Example: “Act Now! Limited Time Offer! Flash Sale! End-of-season sale! Offer Valid till…etc.
We should leverage the human behaviour of fear: losing something that is amazing and highly valuable and for the limited time.
D.It should be Useful.
Headline you craft should end up in something that is precious for a reader.
It should solve their problem or provide them with a solution.
Ok …What we went through is compelling headline writing tips that will work for all niches.
Do you have more inputs on how to write a catchy headline?
Have I missed something?
Do let me know your approach to creating catchy blog post title and best blog headlines.