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Google Releases More Information on the Title Tag Update

What do you have to do for the 87% likelihood that your title tags will display as they are in the search results?

It’s simple, and something that you’re probably–hopefully–already doing: If each of your pages is unique and you use unique title tags, they’ll probably display as they are in the search results.

And where did I get the 87% figure from…?

The answer’s below.

Around August 24th, Google, on it’s Search Central blog, announced an update to the way it generates web page titles for display in search results

I wrote an article about that update, titled, “For Ranking, Does Google Still Use the Original Title Tag?” Googler Responds. In that article, I relayed the answer that Google’s John Mueller gave when he was asked about this.

A few days ago (around September 17th, 2021), Google sent out a tweet, stating that it had refined it’s title tag generation system. 

The tweet linked to an article by Google’s Danny Sullivan

The article opens by stating that Google had received feedback on it’s title tag update. 

Original Title Tag Elements Used 87% of the Time

Earlier in this article, I said that, ‘If each of your pages is unique and you use unique title tags, they’ll probably display as they are in the search results.’

That’s because, in the September 17th Google article, Danny Sullivan says that Goolge uses the HTML title elements (in other words, the <TITLE>Example</TITLE> tags as they originally are). 

Why Not Use Title Tag Elements 100% of the Time?

Well, what if there is no title tag? What then?

If you’re reading this, my guess is that you’re interested in SEO and the performance of your site, and you either currently (or will, after reading this) appreciate the significance of title tags. 

(They’re significant because on a search results page, they’re usually the most prominently displayed text for a search result.)

In the article, Google gives a number of examples of title tags that aren’t don’t accurately describe the content of the associated page.

Above, asked, ‘What if there is no title tag?’

That’s a situation that Google encounters, in which case, it tries to use the text of the page to generate what it thinks is an accurate title of that page. It then displays that generated title in the search results.

Google gives other examples.

For most webmasters, if you have pages of unique content, and you create titles specific to each page (and don’t have titles that are duplicated on any other page of your site), you’ll be fine.

Source: Google Search Central Twitter channel