Title tags have been around forever (at least in Web years), and they’re not particularly sexy. But they’ve always been a big influence on rankings, and probably will be for at least a while.
People ask me how I’d write a title tag. It’s a good question, but I’d rather explain with examples than blabber on about best-practices.
I’ve rounded up 50 examples from 50 “local” businesses. I went to all that trouble because you’ll need to go to a little trouble, too: Your title tags can affect your local rankings big-time – probably more than they should. It’s worth taking the time to write good ones.
Some of these examples belong to clients of mine, but most examples I found just by poking around.
Most of these title tags aren’t flawless (not that there’s such a thing as a “perfect” title tag anyway). And I’m not saying they’re the reason these businesses rank well.
But these title tags do seem to pull their weight. All the businesses rank well as of this writing – usually both in the Google+ Local results and in the local-organic results.
By the way, all the title tags are for homepages, not that that makes a difference: You’d go about writing a title tag for a subpage in the same way.
Flip through these 50 examples of good title tags, and see how you can make yours a little better:
Carpentry Boston & Tile Installer – RJT Carpentry and Tile
An Sen Acupuncture in Portland Oregon
Concrete Driveways, Patios – New Brighton MN – Creative Concrete Inc.
Criminal Defence Lawyers Edmonton | Pringle Chivers Sparks Teskey
Nashua Dentist | Todd G Pollack DMD | Cosmetic Dentistry | Nashua NH 03064
Furniture Store – Northern NJ, Bergen County & Princeton | Design Spree
Chandlee Jewelers: Your Trusted Source for Diamond & Gemstone Jewelry in Athens since 1980
Barbara Oliver & Co Jewelry: Engagement Rings, Diamonds, Design, Appraisals | Buffalo Jewelers
Farzad Family Law – Top Orange County Divorce Lawyers & Family Law Attorneys
Ice Dam Removal Minneapolis & St. Paul MN | IceDamRemovalGuys.com
Westlake Dermatology & Cosmetic Surgery – Austin Dermatologists
Suwanee, GA Dentist – Suwanee Family Dentistry – General Dentist
Car Title Loans in Las Vegas | USA MONEY TODAY
Dentist in Dublin, Award winning | Portobello Dental Clinic
Brunke Chiropractic | Monterey Chiropractors
Back and Neck Center of Brick – Chiropractic & Physical Therapy, Brick, NJ
Tampa Wedding Photographer – Justin DeMutiis Photography – Tampa, FL
24 Hour Las Vegas Veterinary Emergency Care
Welcome to CS Roofing | Roofing Company, Replacement and Repair
Perspective Consulting – Career & Educational Coaching – Oakdale, MN
Concrete Cutting | Concrete Core Drilling Contractor
Window Cleaning & Pressure Washing | Medford, Ashland, S. Oregon
Tucson’s premier Endodontist Root Canal Specialists
Heaven`s Best Carpet Cleaning – Rug Cleaning in Seattle and Tacoma WA
Family Dentist Wheaton IL | Wheaton Family Dental Care
Car and Truck Repair Springfield, MA – Lyndale Garage Inc.
Viva Day Spa | Austin, TX | Massage, Nails, Facials, Skin Care & Gift Certificates
Boulder Divorce Lawyer & Family Law Attorney | Rick Dyson | Home
Dr. Robert Sarro Dermatology in Boca Raton, FL
Skilled Home Health Care in Dallas and North Texas | September Services
Royal Tuxedo | Austin, San Antonio, Laredo
Elwood’s Tree Service in Salem Oregon
Maternity Clothes, Maternity Wear & More | Motherhood Maternity
Lawn Pride | Your Indianapolis Lawn Care Company
NORTH COAST PAVING | Paving Contractor | Cleveland, Ohio
Plastic Surgery St. Louis | Paul Rottler, MD, FACS
LifeCare Dental 9221 2777 Dentist in Perth Open 7 Days 8am – 8pm
Bill the Dog Walker – Premier Dog Walking Service
Laser Hair Removal San Diego | Botox | Avalon Laser Medical Spa
Ann Arbor Towing | Heavy Duty Towing – Michigan Roadside Assistance
S&S Limousine | Rochester, Buffalo, Syracuse NY Limo Service
Aplus Computer Service | 10% OFF Coupon “INTERNET632” 973-483-5359
Hairston Appliances – Appliances, appliance repair and parts – Akron, Ohio
Liberty Tobacco, San Diego’s Destination Cigar Lounge for Cigar and Pipe Smokers
Custom Remodeling in Knoxville | Standard Kitchen & Bath
San Antonio Wedding dresses and bridesmaid gowns – Debi’s Bridal
Granite Fort Lauderdale | Custom Countertops | Marble | Quartz
Savannah’s #1 Fence and Deck Contractor
Dunham Associates CPAs – Certified Public Accountants in San Jose, CA
Santa Barbara Chimney Cleaning – Montecito Chimney Service
Do you have any very solid examples of title tags? Leave a comment and let me know! (Please don’t include a link; just the name of the page.)
Thanks for sharing Phil.
Can you tell me in your opinion what makes an effective Title Tag? (I know you said you aren’t going to blabber on about it, lol)
Just trying to see some consistencies in these and see a pattern.
Some mention company name, some don’t.
Some have a zip code in them, some don’t.
Some use – and others use |
Some have short, some have long TT.
Some have their kw once, others have it multiple.
And at least one of them doesn’t mention their location at all. (CSRoofing)
Thanks, Tyson. I’d suggest reading Danny Sullivan’s piece (which I linked to in the first paragraph). Again, the whole point of this post is to show examples and let you draw your own conclusions. So my lips are sealed 🙂
Yep, I’ve read it, I’ll read it again.
Just wanted to get your .2c.
Mission accomplished. Conclusions have been drawn. 🙂
Yeah, title tags are more an art than a science, IMHO.
Sam Pizzo says
Awesome blog and very cool to see a site on here that i built! I must say sslimousine.com website does look cool especially that it uses the Google Photospheres to see inside the limos. It’s all about making a website user friendly.
Damn, that is cool. Thanks, Sam.
Anyone who’s interested: here’s what I’m referring to – a very nice “Google Business Photos” shoot:
Ties in to my recent post.
Linda Buquet says
Whoa Sam that is cool. I see Mark Goho did your shoot.
Here is example of how they incorporate the Business Photos right into the site: https://www.sslimousine.com/limos/buses/level-1/
Mikel Zaremba says
Great post, Phil! It’s always nice to get a perspective on how others do things.
This post got me thinking about something. A lot of local businesses will run radio ads (and this applies to Tv a little also) and they never take into consideration of adding or modifying title tags to how their business is mentioned or positioned in the ad. I have found it very useful to have the voice over modified to the term you would like people to search or tweak a tag to what is running already.
Seeing all these example reminded me of this for some reason. Again thanks for putting this together.
That’s a great point, Mike. Thanks. It sounds like you’d say that the title tag needs to mention the “brand” (or whatever people think of as “the brand”). If so, I totally agree.
What do you think about adding the local phone number to the title tag?
I think generally it’s a bad use of space, but APlusCS.com (one of my examples) does it cleverly. I’d say there’s zero SEO benefit in including the phone number; only do it if it helps get the right people to click.
Jacob Maslow says
You are absolutely right. Plenty of room in the title tag.
Got to the party a bit late:) Trying to build a list of resources/audit template for staff
This collection of title tags is quite varied in format.
Quite a number of them have the main keyword at the front of the title, which usually helps, I find.
It would be interesting to know how each of the sites compare, ranking-rise, for the keywords in their title.
I agree about the importance of the title tag. It still holds a lot of weight!
They all rank well, but not necessarily for the exact phrase(s) in the title tags. As you say, they’re a pretty varied bunch.
Len Ward says
Nice examples. Amazing how the right title tag can trump so many other local seo ranking factors.
Yeah, although I wouldn’t say title tags “trump” other factors; they’re simply a big factor.
Jason Diller says
Thanks for the love on Design Spree. It’s true that it’s an art, not a science…
Thanks for stopping by.
My pleasure: you guys and Design Spree absolutely nail the on-page stuff.
Phil Brooks says
I really appreciate the nice article, it’s a great read. I honestly had no idea how important Title Tags were while I was getting my website put together for me by No1WebDesign. I got my hosting done through Go Daddy and I’m curious whether or not hosting with a different company would adversely affect my potential SEO? I’m really just getting into the whole SEO thing and it looks like I might need to do a bit of redesigning beforehand. Thanks again for the great read, it helps alot!
Good question, fellow Phil. Nah, assuming your site doesn’t have any downtime during the move to new hosting, you should be fine.
Jason Diller says
Also, if you want to check out BraenStone . com
This is one of our clients, the on-page SEO is basically perfect, except for some schema stuff…
Christopher West says
Pretty good stuff 🙂 Thanks Phil
One of my first managers thought “sentenced” title tags were best…. (nearly 6 years ago!)
“Sentenced” title tags might work in a situation where you get extra points for cleverness 🙂
Interesting ideas Phil, probably I am not good in dealing with the title tags or anything like this but the thing is while doing on-page SEO title tags must relate to the content we have on the page but people use their keywords in it. My question is “should we make the title with our brand name or the keywords” which one is better or either we use both with a ( – ) or a ( | ).
Good question. Ideally you have both the brand name and 1-2 “keywords” in there. If that’s too lengthy, maybe the brand name is already pretty keyword-relevant, in which case I’d include that and maybe 1 keyword. It’s a juggling act.
Holly Pedit says
Great info Phil. Working on two sites right now that are re-branding and this will help.
First, thank you for this example as many “how to write title tags” articles don’t list several local examples!
Next, you had the example of the Nashua business which included the zip code in the title tag. Has there been any recent evidence of this being beneficial (or considered spammy) by Google, assuming that the keyword planner tool says that there actually are searches for local phrases which have the “zip code”?
Finally, with the increase in people using their voices to say a root keyword phrase (NON-long tail) into their smart phones, Android evidently appends “near me” to such phrases. Has anyone gone back to add “near me” to either the title or meta description tag? Or (dare I say) add it to the old (now usually empty) meta keywords tag?
Thanks for your thoughts.
Thank you for this awesome article.
Most of the above small biz owners have keywords in their domain name. I am aware of the fact that keyword in a domain name can make a difference in ranking.
So do you recommend small biz owners to buy domains with keywords? Do you insist on it?
I just found this post through a link in your updated Local SEO Guide v3. I notice a lot of the titles are well beyond the 60 characters others seem to recommend for a title otherwise it gets cut-off when displaying in the search results. I see its written in 2014 but not sure things have changed that much but wondering if you have guidelines for length Phil on the title tag in 2016?
Great post! I have the same doubt as Cliff back in 2016- are these now too long, exceeding the 60 character cut off?
Nah. These days, Google rewrites many/most title tags in the SERPs anyway.
Thanks for your advice Phil.
I took excepts from three examples and came up with my unique title.