When google searches for a string, will it make any changes at all to the string of words? Will it re-order them to fit an article? Make singular words plural, or plural into singular? Add prefixes or suffixes?
I guess what I'm trying to do is provide a multi word title that might fit several search efforts. If I use "Brown cows provide white milk" will a google search for "brown milk cow" find it? Or "milking cows"?
Of course, if google makes some changes such as adding an "s" but then places the article in position #527 instead of #5 as a result it won't do much good.
It will still return the article but as you suspect it will be down the rankings, how far depends on how stiff the competition is.
If you are targetting multiple key phrases you could instead pick your primary phrase for the title, then include the secondary phrase a couple of times, maybe bolded or in a subhead, then use the secondary key phrase as the anchor text in some of your back links.
I hadn't thought of the back link approach, bolded - thanks. I do suspect that google doesn't mind removing words such as "the" or "an" without much effect on the search and might even remove the word "milk" in my search example, but I'm not sure.
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