Optimizing Title Tags and Preserving Old URLs | Friday SEO Tip

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Optimizing Title Tags and Preserving Old URLs

Hello from Mexico! I’m gearing up for BSM’s annual retreat down here, where we somehow find the time to talk about SEO between diving, golfing, and sipping cerveza. Check out the video above for this week’s Friday SEO Tip, which is a two-parter. In it, I talk about the importance of title tags. I also advise you to preserve original URLs, even after updating old pages with new content.

Let’s take a look at title tags first. In the final episode of How Search Works, Gary Illyes talks about the anatomy of a search result and emphasizes the importance of title tags. You can find these HTML code tags in the bright blue links on the search engine results pages (SERPs). When creating title tags, keep them concise (50-60 characters), and tell both Google and potential visitors what your page is about. A great title helps the algorithm better understand your content, increasing the chances your page will appear in relevant searches.

Now onto URLs. Updating existing content is smart SEO! But there’s a crucial caveat: Do not change the URLs. Changing the URL essentially creates a “new” page in Google’s eyes, which means losing any ranking traction you had. When I updated a blog I had written ten years ago, for example, I made sure to preserve the URL so any ranking improvements would only enhance its current performance.

On another note, Google’s March 2024 core update is still rolling out. These big updates take time. I’ll keep you in the loop once it’s complete, and we can analyze its impact on search results together.