Bloggers are trained to create optimized content that will rank them on Google organic search.
In particular, they need to rank on any of the top three positions for their target keyword.
The most recent study at AWR Cloud reveals that the click-through rates for the first three positions in search engine result pages are 29.3%, 14.39%, and 9.79%.
If your site ranks on any of the three positions for your keyword, then attracting visitors to your blog from SERPs shouldn't be much of a problem!
The question now is this:
If you're not in the top three, does it mean that there's no hope for your blog?
Well, not really. In fact, you can still generate lots of clicks to your site even if it doesn't rank on the first page of search results!
In this post, I will teach you how to make the most out of your Google search click-through rate.
1. Click-worthy titles
Regardless of your position, you have the power to increase your CTR by 20%
The secret lies in your titles.
Write them in a way that your visitors will want to read them.
Of course, this is easier said than done. But you just have to make them simple, easy to understand, and detailed. Also, let them highlight those specific attractive features of your site.
Here's an example of a click-worthy title. It's from one of the posts by Brian Dean about actionable SEO techniques.
The title? “21 Actionable SEO Techniques That Work GREAT in 2018”
It's a click-worthy title for many reasons:
- It's a list article – People love lists because they help set the expectations of readers. The title promises them a fixed number of tips in an article, and that's what readers will get.
- It mentions the keyword – The inclusion of the keyword in the title helps boost the organic search position of the article. More importantly, it tells users what the post is about.
- It's a recent post – The inclusion of “2018” in the title informs readers that the content is relatively new. It aims to provide the latest techniques to readers. That's good enough for them to click the link and find out what they are.
The same person also developed this title tag tool to help you. It analyzes your title. And then gives it a score as well as suggestions on how you can improve it.
And while you're working with your titles, remember to keep them short. Long titles can drive your visitors away because they take lots of time to read.
According to Moz, an ideal length for your title tag is around 55 characters. You can go lower or reach 65 characters.
That's up to you. Just keep it somewhere there.
2. Compelling meta description
If you want to increase CTR by 36%, you need to create longer and more informative meta descriptions, too.
Longer meta descriptions are compelling because they let you maximize the space within the listings.
Think of it as an opportunity to express more meaningful statements.
But while you should make them longer, you shouldn't go overboard with the length of your meta descriptions.
Like the title, you should also keep them short – somewhere between 160-165 characters. This way, you prevent search engines from truncating the description due to its length. Giving users a chance to see the entire meta description increases its chances of attracting more clicks.
Beyond updating their length, here are other tips on how to write useful meta descriptions:
- Find out what keywords your visitors are searching for and use them.
- Use the active voice.
- Make them unique.
- Modify the meta descriptions for your older posts.
3. Schema and rich snippets
After meta descriptions, work on making the job of search engines easier with schema and rich snippets.
Take it from the people who saw a 30% increase in CTR after implementing these elements.
Here's a run-down:
Schema takes care of matters from the backend and makes search robots cruise through your posts and pages smoothly.
Rich snippets, on the other hand, complement the job on the frontend by featuring useful details such as star ratings and availability.
Together, they help organize the structure and context of your content and make it easier to understand.
So, what are you waiting for?
A WordPress plugin like All in One Schema Rich Snippet can help you with the implementation. It is easy to set up and supports most data types.
Click here to download and install the tool.
4. Nab Featured Snippets
Since you're aiming for something, you might as well shoot at something massive. And that is position #0.
Sure, getting to that coveted spot is difficult. But if you make it, you'll bathe in rewards.
So start acquiring featured snippets because doing so has led to a 516% increase in CTR!
Featured snippets are sometimes called answer boxes because their primary purpose is to answer a user's question.
You know those selected search results, which are featured at the top of Google's results?
Bingo. Those are featured snippets!
If you need help on how to optimize featured snippets and make them work in your favor, here are some tips:
- Ask the right questions and find out answers to that start with what, how, and why.
- Leverage video content marketing and showcase high-quality videos.
- Branch out and ask questions to people outside of your immediate reach.
- Monitor what people are searching for on Twitter.
5. Split test everything!
Play around with different versions of your title to find out which one rewards you with the best CTR.
You need to do this because titles are compelling and can do as much as make or break it for you.
In fact, 80% of readers don't make it past the title. This means that out of 10 people, only 2 of them will stick around for what you have to say.
So make your title count.
Here are some tips to make that happen:
- Use a headline analyzer like CoSchedule. It will measure your title and score it based on its impact.
- Isolate variables that you need to test so you can run the test correctly. Testing multiple variables in one fell swoop keeps you from managing each element of your page. Therefore, once you're done checking the first variable, make the necessary changes, and test the next to increase CTR effectively.
- Wait for search engines to update SERPs. Ans allow yourself enough time to gather data so you can achieve meaningful results.
- Use Google Search Console to see the CTRs of all your ranking pages. This way, not only can you analyze them and find ways to improve each. But you can also monitor your blog's SEO performance. Here's how to use GSR and drive 28% more traffic.
If you're using WordPress, you can create a different version of your title using Title Experiments Free. It also helps you discover which one is the most interesting for your readers based on the number of visitors who clicked on the headline.
In the cut-throat world of organic search, you'd be hard-pressed to find ways on ranking at the top for your target keyword. But instead of clawing and scratching your way along with hundreds and thousands of your competitors, it's best to focus on improving your CTR instead!
After all, what really matters is generating the most traffic as possible to your blog posts. Even if you're not on the first page of the organic search, following the tips above will help you make the most out of your current position.