Internet Marketing

The Impact of Title Tags & Google News On Ranking

  • Renee Reply

    There were two interesting ranking things that came up in John Mueller's latest Google hangout:

    1.) He clarified that organic search results do not give extra weight to Google News publisher content.

    2.) Title tags are not as crucial for ranking as the actual content for those pages. As SERoundtable explains: "...not having a title tag won't prevent the page from ranking, but not having content on the page can."

    "We do use it for ranking, but it's not the most critical part of a page. So it's not worthwhile filling it with keywords to kind of hope that it works that way. In general, we try to recognize when a title tag is stuffed with keywords because that's also a bad user experience for users in the search results. If they're looking to understand what these pages are about and they just see a jumble of keywords, then that doesn't really help." (See his full video here, fast forward to 57 minutes in:

    Google: Google News Publishers Don't Get A Ranking Boost -

    Google: Title Tags Are Not A Critical Ranking Signal -

    01/19 at 10:29 AM (21630)
  • Adam Reply

    Well. This is really fascinating. And I have seen pages rank on keywords that are not in the title tag. However, it is usually much easier to rank when it is... So I wonder about how true this is. What do you all think? Has the title tag lost it's ranking power?

    01/19 at 11:14 AM (21636)
  • Renee Reply

    Well, Mueller didn't say title tag doesn't matter. He said it isn't as critical as the content. It would be interesting to run a test.

    01/19 at 02:08 PM (21642)
  • Zach aka The Rogue Cowboy Reply

    Content is key. Can't say it enough.

    01/19 at 04:04 PM (21644)
    • Josh B. Reply

      Agreed, Zach. Title tags are obviously still important for optimization purposes, but the page content needs to have some substance to it as well.

      01/22 at 02:02 PM (21684)
  • Tim Reply

    I'm not convinced Google news publishers aren't getting a boost. Didn't Google also say at one point they weren't favoring YouTube results either?

    01/22 at 10:56 AM (21682)
    • Renee Reply

      I'm not totally convinced yet either, Tim. Although it could simply be due to those sites typically having more authority already.

      01/22 at 05:03 PM (21687)
  • Matt Reply

    While title tags are nerfed, it is still important to have them.

    01/22 at 04:18 PM (21685)
  • Bill F Reply

    It could just be coincidental since title tags are usually (obviously not always) about the same things that the page content talks about

    01/25 at 09:24 AM (21689)