Posted to Ben Finklea's blog on August 3rd, 2009

How To Write An Effective Snippet (For SEO)

When ranking your website’s pages for certain keywords, search engines generally use the page title tag as the snippet that appears in the SERPs. If it doesn’t seem to “fit” the search results, the search engines will find a snippet within the on-page text. But there is a good chance that your page rankings for a keyword could be hindered by a poorly written page title tag, which inevitably means a bad snippet. This will hurt your rankings, even if you did every other minute SEO detail for your site.

There a few sure-fire ways to get the search engines to use your snippet. An effective snippet, or page title tag, will include your most important keyword. The keyword should appear once and as close to the beginning of the title as possible. Another way is to include that same keyword within the first on-page paragraph, as close to the beginning as naturally possible.

If you use your most important keyword in the page title tag and on-page content as early as possible in a natural and relevant way, chances are the search engines will use the snippet you desire. This will help you rank well in the SERPs and bring quality traffic to your site.

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