writing

How to Write an Awesome Headline

So, what is the low down on blog headlines?  In this post I will be discussing format, relevance and the all important hook!  I will preface by stating my personal preference.  Why?  Because I want you to proceed through this post with the upmost confidence that I value the integrity of your blog. 

I’m just going to come out and say it.  I really begrudge those super awesome, catchy blog titles…that lure you in and DON’T deliver half of what you expected. 

  1. You have my attention.
  2. Scrolling, scrolling still scrolling. 
  3. Ah wait I know this game.  CLICK BAIT

You should aim to deliver on the promise(s) you state within your awesome headlineIt’s all well and good getting someone to your site, but you need them to leave with a positive impression.  

Phew now that’s out in the open let’s jump to it!

So, what is the low down on blog headlines? In this post I will be discussing format, relevance and the all important hook! I'm just going to come out and say it. I really begrudge those super awesome, catchy blog titles...that lure you in and DON'T deliver half of what you expected.

Formatting an Awesome Headline

Where do the capital letters go though?  *cry* There are a few different “headlines styles.”  It can get pretty messy, because all the styles differ slightly.  However I am going to keep things simple.  I care about our sanity after all!  Luckily for us there are a few general rules they all follow:

  • Capitalize the first word in the title
  • Capitalize the last word in the title
  • Capitalize the important words in the title

What are Important Words?

In most cases, they include the following words:

  • Adjectives (yummy, smooth, uneven)
  • Adverbs (bravely, defiantly, quickly)
  • Nouns (lamp, mug, scroll)
  • Pronouns (they, she, he)
  • Subordinating conjunctions (as, so, that)
  • Verbs (dance, believe, talk)

The following types of words are generally not capitalized:

  • Articles (a, an, the)
  • Coordinating Conjunctions (and, but, for)
  • Short (less than 5 letters) Prepositions (at, by, from)

What’s the Alternative?

Sentence Case is for those brave souls that wish to disregard the rules.  By following Sentence Case you can write titles as if they were a typical sentence.  This first word of your heading is capitalized and the rest are in lower case (except for proper nouns.)

All of this stuff can get pretty kerazy

I think the most important take away is CONSISTENCY.   Choose your preferred style” and stick to it throughout.  This includes your blog subheadings. 

Punctuation Rules

Subtitles should be separated from the main title with a colon or a dash.  Unless the title and the subtitle are both very short, then it is best to use two separate lines.

Don’t use italics or quotation marks to format the FULL title.  Avoid full stops!  Any punctuation or italics which are required for independent reasons should be used normally; this includes a question mark at the end if the title is a question.

So, what is the low down on blog headlines? In this post I will be discussing format, relevance and the all important hook! I'm just going to come out and say it. I really begrudge those super awesome, catchy blog titles...that lure you in and DON'T deliver half of what you expected.

Make your Headline Catchy

OK so we have the formatting covered…Now for the fun stuff!  If you have a lackluster headline, you run the risk of being ignored.  No one needs or wants that for their content. 

I want to bring your attention back to my lovely preface from earlier.  You want to make it catchy, but not click baity

ALWAYS deliver on your promises. 

As a general guideline titles that have 55 characters and approximately 6 words tend to perform better.  Although you can fluctuate between 6-8 words!  I recommend making  use of the CoSchedule Headline Analyzer

This is a FREE resource that analyses your blog titles and provides clear feedback and actionable steps to take.

Power Headline Words

This is the part in which things could get pretty click baity.  But I think including an emotive/power word within your headline is acceptable.  IF you follow this up with some awesome content!

Some examples of power words are:

  • Free
  • Interesting
  • Useful
  • Competitive
  • Successful
  • Quick
  • Easy
  • Valuable
  • Breakthrough
  • Proven

I encourage you to look up more power words that resonate with you and your blog

I feel that when you use these more “salesy” techniques they should really really resonate with you.  In this way the will ALWAYS come from a genuine place.

To conclude, whatever “style” you choose consistency is key.  Don’t forget to extend this to your subheadings too!

AlWAYS Remember to Optimize

This is my last 2 cents  on blog headlines! Remember to include your key words in the main headline and at least one subheading within the body of your text. 

I do hereby swear to help protect both your integrity AND your SEO

If you’re not sure about SEO, check out my previous post by clicking the image below.

This post is aimed at both new and more established bloggers who have heard the term SEO thrown around but don’t know what it is, and or/how to implement it! Let's GO!

P.s. If you appreciate the content I share here, why not buy me a coffee? 🙂

Buy Me a Coffee at ko-fi.com

As always I hope this has been useful content.  Have I missed anything?  Please leave a comment below!Basically within this post you will find a comprehensive list of 7 AWESOME Twitter Communities for Bloggers. My aim is to help us both save time and improve the efficiency of our schedules!

16 Comments

  1. Johnzelle

    August 8, 2018 at 5:04 pm

    I developed a style of capitalizing just the first word of my headlines to make it consistent. I appreciate the resource of the headline analyzer! Great post!

    1. Rachael Hope

      August 8, 2018 at 5:07 pm

      To be honest I’m now tempted to move on over to that alternative style of just capitalising the first word … but I’ve had the rules drilled into me pahaha! Yeah that headline analyser is amaaaazing. You’ll see what I mean when you use it 🙂 it really gets you thinking! Thanks for stopping by!

  2. Quwrites

    August 8, 2018 at 5:28 pm

    This is so helpful! I was recently thinking of researching about the titles, because I had read somewhere that Titles are a very important part of SEO. You have made it so much easier! Thank you thank you! 🙂 🙂

    1. Rachael Hope

      August 8, 2018 at 6:11 pm

      Thank you so much for stopping by and commenting! 🙂 I’m glad this post has been useful! Also thank you for re blogging. Really appreciate it! 😁

  3. Quwrites

    August 8, 2018 at 5:31 pm

    Reblogged this on Quwrites and commented:
    An amazing read on writing awesome headlines and improving SEO. Rachael to the rescue! 🙂

  4. rachaelstray

    August 9, 2018 at 8:46 am

    I don’t cap up all the words – that’s the journalist in me. Great tips here Rachael.

    1. Rachael Hope

      August 9, 2018 at 8:52 am

      I’m beginning to wish I knew this was an option sooner pahaha!! I feel like my fingers are now pre programmed to hold shift between each new relevant word!! 😱 thanks for stopping by / commenting! I gave you a shout out / linked to you in one of my previous posts. I’m not sure if anything flags up your end 🙂 I tried Hootsuite!!

      1. rachaelstray

        August 9, 2018 at 9:18 am

        It’s what you get used to! Aw thank you I will check it out – I’ve still got a few emails to go back through this week!

  5. thisramblingwoman

    August 9, 2018 at 9:37 am

    Useful tips! Titles are something I struggle with still and I’m trying to master SEO also.

    Thanks for sharing!

    1. Rachael Hope

      August 9, 2018 at 5:59 pm

      Thank you for stopping by 🤓 I’m really you found some useful info!

  6. Love, Soph

    August 9, 2018 at 10:20 am

    Very helpful post! I’ve pinned it so I can read it whenever I need it! ✨

    Soph | http://www.lovesoph.co.uk

    1. Rachael Hope

      August 9, 2018 at 10:27 am

      That’s so kind thank you so much 🙂 x

  7. Alexandra Quinlann

    August 9, 2018 at 10:29 am

    This is such a helpful post! I learned that catchy titles are the best and that you need to make sure you deliver what your headline is promising. I’ll definitely be checking out that headline analyzer!

    XOA
    http://www.alexandraquinlann.com

    1. Rachael Hope

      August 9, 2018 at 5:58 pm

      Thank you so much 🙂 I’m really glad you found this helpful. Let me know how you get on with it 🤓

  8. Renard Moreau

    August 10, 2018 at 9:46 pm

    🙂 It is our headline that entices people to check out our blog posts; therefore it needs to be a very good one!

    1. Rachael Hope

      August 11, 2018 at 5:35 pm

      Yes! You are so right 🙂 I’m always wary of the headlines that promise the world though! Great headlines are grounded in reality and are backed up by awesome content!! – in my humble opinion 🤓 thanks for stopping by!

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