Something I Just Discovered about titles and URLS

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  1. yoshi97 profile image56
    yoshi97posted 14 years ago

    For a long time it has puzzled me how one of my hubs keeps doing great, when it shouldn't. You see, I started a hub on one topic and then changed my mind in the middle of it.

    Now, back then I had no idea you couldn't change the URL later, so I was horrified when I was stuck with a URL that couldn't be changed and had nothing to do with my article ... but I left it as is, vowing I would some day find out how to fix it ... lucky for me ... that day never came.

    The hub I speak of went on to be a great performer, but it broke the rule where the URL must have the keyword in it. Trust me ... it does not ... but the title does.

    So, what does this have to do with today? Read on!

    I was checking my hubs and I found on some when I did an exact search I received a description and on others I received all of my tags. Now, no one is going to click on a bunch of tags ... and sure enough ... the ones that came up as tags were my worst performers.

    What caused some descriptions to show up right and others to show up wrong. Was Hubpages short circuiting my efforts? Was the Google Beast exacting revenge on me? As it turns out, the case was neither ... and what I just learned was worth a lot of gold ... which is why I will share. smile

    You see, I was always told the URL had more weight than the title, and I believed it. I can now say 100% that that is a myth!

    To prove my case, I looked up every hub of mine by keywords. Now, for some I had the keywords in the title and for every one of those the description appeared fine. For those that only had the keywords in the URL the URL was nothing but tags.

    So what does that prove? Read on!

    Now, for those hubs that had the keywords in the title AND in the URL, I had a description. What does this mean? Tada! The title has more weight! That's why my article for the wrong URL was still doing well, because I used the keywords in the title - it also explains why some articles were doing poorly, as I did not use the keywords in the title.

    Of course, it's best to use your keywords in your title AND in your URL, and I now know this to be true ... I just changed the title on some to make them more interesting, and in doing so, shot myself in the foot.

    So, now you know the secret ... always place your keywords in your title AND your URL - and if you have a URL that is wrong and can't be changed, at least place the keywords in your title.

    enjoy! smile

    1. Ultimate Hubber profile image66
      Ultimate Hubberposted 14 years agoin reply to this

      SEOs have been emphasizing this point for years now. Good for you that you have realized it. smile

    2. kverdasmith profile image61
      kverdasmithposted 14 years agoin reply to this

      Thanks, that was nice of you to share. I feel like I am going to Hub College. It is great.

    3. prettydarkhorse profile image55
      prettydarkhorseposted 14 years agoin reply to this

      thanks so much YOSHI97 for this information, I always doesnt care before if they are a lot the same my URL and title now I know, hmmmm, you make my weekend good now because I have lots of articles in which the title captures the article but the URL doesnt, so at least it might still be ok...

    4. Angel Of Love profile image64
      Angel Of Loveposted 14 years agoin reply to this

      So, you have just re-invented the wheel.  Congrats!

      You should have noticed long ago from SERPs that some of the pages on the first page don't even have the keywords on their URLs, only on their titles.

    5. Siotosh profile image61
      Siotoshposted 14 years agoin reply to this

      Strange though you are right, because the title is what the search engine look for, this is my title: Photography was becoming very addictive. So I ended up with rehab ads and now my hub is flagged … -addictive
      Here's another
      What's wrong with these titles?

  2. profile image0
    B.C. BOUTIQUEposted 14 years ago

    ty yoshi, very informative, I had no idea, it is true, you learn something new every day...

  3. Len Cannon profile image88
    Len Cannonposted 14 years ago

    Well, yes, that is good advice in general.  You should always have the keywords you want in your title.

  4. thisisoli profile image73
    thisisoliposted 14 years ago

    You should have it in both the title and URL, but having the keyword in the URL is a very heavy bonus compared to title in my experience!

  5. Jenn Knows profile image60
    Jenn Knowsposted 14 years ago

    Thanks for sharing your experience.

    My experience shows me the title is more important than anything.  It is always a huge plus if you use the main keywords in the URL. But be very careful about keeping your url's short.  You might have 6-7 words in your title, try to trim the URL into 2-4 words with the main keywords.  It really helps.

  6. habee profile image93
    habeeposted 14 years ago

    Ahhh...more wisdom from our wise dragon!

  7. sunforged profile image71
    sunforgedposted 14 years ago

    Should be in both, but the URL is weighed more heavily than the title.

    Particularly when taking in account ALL of the search engines, yahoo loves keyword rich urls

    I have close to a hundred domains that if i was willing to share, I could use as evidence...glad to see your traffic rise, but there is no doubt that the URL keyword takes precedence over a title keyword

    1. rebekahELLE profile image85
      rebekahELLEposted 14 years agoin reply to this

      sf, do you change all of your URL's from your title?? can you give me an example, please??

  8. sunforged profile image71
    sunforgedposted 14 years ago

    No, I use cheesy keyword rich titles and URL's smile

    So there is little to no difference between my titles and my URL's

    It leads to higher rankings in the SE, Yoshi was right when he wanted to change his titles to be more "clickable" ...but its better to rank and hope your summary draws the search traffic

    What i was referencing in a general not hubs specific example is that I buy domains frequently, if a keyword performs moderately well as a hubpage, than i just go ahead and buy the domain.

    I cant develop so many domains, so i make quick landing pages, all ads , with one or two crappy articles...they sit like that until I find time to make a real site

    Within 60 days those sites are usually first page in yahoo and google..the point? they dont have any title text!

    there is a distinction...

    the search engines like the keywords before the / /

    the farther away they are, the less important they are

    So, I would GUESS that here on hubpages the title is very important ...but in general SEO, its common knowledge that the URL keyword is key and king

    So yoshis post is helpful!!!!! make sure those keywords are in the title  and in the H2 (text capsule header)...its important

    Im just disagreeing that the title takes precedence over the URL

    ...should be in both! might be that the title weighs a bit heavier here than normal since our keywords are so deep in the URL..but still doesnt outweigh the URL my experience

    about 3 months ago, i used the keyword tool to change all my titles and my major headers... i also stuffed a few terms around until I liked what ads appeared in my hubs hub traffic went up 200% in a couple of weeks,and my earnings went up 500%...this didnt happen because my new titles were weighed heavier than my URL, it happened because i did better research.

    Now all my new hubs have better researched titles and URL's from teh beginning...but if a hub is failing, its better to change the title keywords than worry about a a title/url agreement

    does that make any sense? Ive been at the computer a little to long today wink

    1. yoshi97 profile image56
      yoshi97posted 14 years agoin reply to this

      Thanks Sunforged! That definitely helps explain the anomaly, as I was always taught the URL was most important and it always worked that way for me until I came here.

      I think you hit the nail on the head when you mentioned URL length. This would explain why my titles are overruling my URLs without invalidating anything I had learned in the past.

      So, on Hubpages at least, title appears to trump URL in importance; HOWEVER, still use those keywords in the URL as I definitely agree that it should help with ranking.

      Currently, I'm experimenting with a few hubs by using one high ranking keyword in the URL and a different high ranking keyword in the title ... not certain what to expect yet, so I'll have to keep a watch on my analytics to see if I can find a conclusive trend in the keyword hits data. smile

      And while I might be a wise dragon ... we need to also remember that Sunforged is a wise human. As he SEOs off this site more than I do nowadays, one would be wise to lend more credence to what he says. smile

      1. yoshi97 profile image56
        yoshi97posted 14 years agoin reply to this

        Addendum:  I went back to my older pages offsite (not on HP) where I experimented with title/URL disagreement, and those are ranking higher for the URL - and the URL for those is short. As such, I definitely think that proves Sunforged right! smile

    2. rebekahELLE profile image85
      rebekahELLEposted 14 years agoin reply to this

      yes, this is helpful. my keywords are in my title, but I'll have to check placement. I haven't changed any of my URL's and some of them seem to be doing fine. they're right there on page 1 at the top even when I mix up the placement of words to search where they are. a few aren't though because they're such common search words, I guess.  still learning so much and I hear different things from different people, even my oldest son who spends all day on the computer and knows all this stuff.

      thanks for taking the time to explain. smile

  9. profile image0
    lyricsingrayposted 14 years ago

    Yoshi, thank you xo I was actually just having difficulty with this subject and ta da Yoshi fixed it - thank you

  10. retellect profile image73
    retellectposted 14 years ago

    Thanks for the advice, one fellow hubber told me of rearranging all of his hubs that didnt have "correct" urls. If only he read this first!

  11. thranax profile image73
    thranaxposted 14 years ago

    O.O Dang it. I always put keywords in the title and url so it doesn't really help me much.


  12. johnr54 profile image49
    johnr54posted 14 years ago

    The most important on page factor for ranking is well known to be the title tag.

    The most important off page factor for ranking (and the most important overall) is the inbound link and the anchor text in those links.  (If you don't think it's important, Google "click here" and you will see the top result is Adobe Reader, even though the words "click here" aren't on the page, the title tag, or the URL, because literally millions of sites point to it with the anchor text "click here")

    On hubpages, both those important ranking factors are controlled by the title, since that sets both the title tag of the page and the anchor text for every automatically generated inbound link from hubpages.  With smart tagging and a popular category this can add up to thousands of links, all with the anchor text that you choose.

    Bottom line, on hubpages in particular, the title tag is the single most important thing you can do on the page to help rank.  The URL is a nonfactor compared to the inbound linking.

    1. yoshi97 profile image56
      yoshi97posted 14 years agoin reply to this

      ah ... you speak of the Hubpages interlocking web that links articles together over time. I have watched this spindly beast and I do believe it's responsible from upping the ranking of articles over time.

      I already have a PR3 article in my short time here, and I have several more headed that way. I thoroughly believe Hubpages interlocking between hubs helps a lot with the organic page rankings and that this (like you said) furthers the importance of page titles on Hubpages.

      I also played around with tags during my time here, but as far as I can tell they have had no effect, other than to allow other hubbers to find my pages. To that end, I try to come up with tags that are extremely relevant to the material I wrote about - and I think they may also help with getting the right ads on the page from adsense, but the jury is still out on that one.

      The difficulty of applying common SEO rules to Hupbages is that most SEO knowledge infers that *you* own the domain and are directly in control of it. With Hubpages this is not the case, which is why some of the variables are out of your control. As such, we find ourselves scrambling to find the things that are still within our grasp and working them to meet our goal.

      A good example is the adsense ads themselves ... How many of us have went to the Adsense page and tried to switch the types of ads we have on our Hubpages?

      I remember changing the color, the type, and everything and then waiting a day to see the new and improved ads ... they never came. Instead, I have learned to write my articles a certain way to write around the limitations of the ad placement, so as to use their placement to the best of my ability. And with over half of my hubs generating over a 6% click-thru rate I seem to have that part just about down - with the other half of the hubs being hubs for the hubbers, fluff articles for the fun of it, or the few that never received an audience (due to poor title choice, I have found).

  13. habee profile image93
    habeeposted 14 years ago

    Sunforged's IQ is like 250!

  14. johnr54 profile image49
    johnr54posted 14 years ago

    Tags can be your friend on hubpages.  Here's a hub I wrote on how to use tags

    As far as trying to optimise adsense placements and colors, that's what the YieldBuild they use to place the ads is supposed to do, and I remember some time back where they were placing all sorts of wild colored Adsense blocks but eventually settled down into what we have today.  You can of course help by breaking up your text blocks to allow a spot for the ads to be placed.

    As far as SEOing hubpages, you do have control over the most important factors, title tag, hub content, inbound link anchor text, and of course you can do all the inbound linking you want.  Beyond that you are talking about site structure and PR distribution, which is why Hubpages is not really appropriate to try ranking for really competitive terms.

    But Hubpages does a much better job that say Squidoo for building links to related hubs and such, so that it's not unusual for a good hub to see a lot of internal backlinks.  And that's how you get your high PR pages.


  15. Benz B profile image60
    Benz Bposted 14 years ago

    This was great info.  I will perform a test on a few of my least performing hubs and see what the results are. Thanks.

  16. Jeffrey Neal profile image70
    Jeffrey Nealposted 14 years ago

    Just wanted to reinforce what sunforged said here since one of my partners has just reached the number one spot on google for a decently competitive product search term.  His site is ahead of amazon and other large shopping site results for his phrase. Unfortunately I can't tell you the phrase, but his URL is the keywords he is ranking for...that's it.  He has some backlinks as well, but the domain is fairly new and beating out some big least for now. smile


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