Trends behind the Google title tag changes; Monday’s daily brief – Search Engine Land

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Good morning, Marketers, and we need to work on our communication.

I just hopped off a call with the SMX SEO committee and one takeaway I got from the lively conversation we had is that search marketers don’t always get communication right. Whether it’s in the form of setting expectations for clients and stakeholders from the beginning or reporting what’s going on in our campaigns and accounts. 

We all know the key to solid communication is knowing your audience and knowing what matters most to them. Your CEO cares about top-level metrics. Your tech team cares about the details and specifications. And your associate cares about how they can best do their jobs.

This conversation had me nodding my head and thinking of PPC expert Amanda Farley’s SMX Advanced session on approaching your audience in a whole new way. And how to craft your communication to actually answer what matters most to each person involved.

Sure, it’s meant for your PPC campaigns, but we could probably learn a thing or two from it about communicating with stakeholders, clients, team members and our bosses, too.

Carolyn Lyden,

Director of Search Content


The latest data behind the title tag changes in Google

BowTiedWookie (yep) posted a thread on Twitter after analyzing “10 sites for the same 500 keywords” with the Keywords in Sheets tool. Sure, it’s a small sample size, but the data is worth examining (and seeing if the same is true for your sites). What trends did they find?

  • The shorter the title the less likely Google is to change it.
  • Google will change the title ~95% of the time if emojis or weird characters are included.
  • High DA sites are not being forced to include the brand name.
  • If Google changes the title it is pulling in the H1 >50% of the time.
  • The average character count of Google’s title changes were 52 characters.

Check out the thread here.


Calling all future-focused search marketers, submit a pitch for SMX Next!

SMX Next returns virtually on November 9-10, 2021 focusing on forward-thinking search marketing. AI and machine learning have already become part of both paid and organic search performance. Commerce platforms are just as powerful as the traditional search engines for driving sales. And new ways to deliver content across search and social platforms are giving creative marketers more options for driving engagement.

SMX Next will explore next-generation strategies, equipping attendees with emerging SEO and PPC tactics as well as expert insights on the future of the search marketing profession. Whether you’ve been speaking for years or are just dipping your toes into speaking, please consider submitting a session pitch. We are always looking for new speakers with diverse points of view. The deadline for SMX Next pitches is September 24th!

Read our tips for a compelling session proposal and send in your pitch here.


10 powerful reasons to enter the Search Engine Land Awards

The global events of the past two years have made it more important than ever for brands and agencies to stand out against the competition. Being able to call your company “award-winning” is one of the most powerful differentiators you can have. That’s just one amazing reason to enter the 2021 Search Engine Land Awards. Need more?

  1. Showcase exceptional work.
  2. Generate new business.
  3. Dazzle existing clients and customers.
  4. Boost company morale.
  5. Earn international recognition.

Read the other 5 reasons here.

Deadline alert: The final date to submit your Search Engine Land Awards entry is Friday, September 3 at 11:59 pm PST. Begin your application now!


Search Shorts: Local, local, local

How to handle local SEO without a physical address. Yes, your business can rank in search results in cities where you don’t have a physical address. How? By using tools like Google My Business (GMB), by creating content related to the city you want to target, by adding reviews or testimonials from clients in the city you’re targeting, and more.

Google Local Pack without any CTAs. “If you search for [restaurants near me] in Google Search mobile or desktop, you will see the local three pack and map but you won’t see buttons to call the restaurant or directions or a way to order online,” wrote Barry Schwartz on SERoundtable. We’re with Lily Ray on this one: “How is this helpful for users?”

Your Google Posts might start appearing on third-party sites. “Which third party sites would posts appear on?” asked Claire Carlile in a tweet last week. We’re interested to see which types of sites Posts will appear on.


Quote of the Day

“I might be in the minority here, but I think Google has the right to change title tags just like they have the right to change meta descriptions if they think it leads to better experiences for THEIR users,” tweeted Eli Schwartz, author of “Product-Led SEO.”



About The Author

carolyn lyden headshot 1

Carolyn Lyden serves as the Director of Search Content for Search Engine Land and SMX. With expertise in SEO, content marketing, local search, and analytics, she focuses on making marketers’ jobs easier with important news and educational content.