Google’s latest Search improvement is a “new system of generating titles for web pages” that better describes what a result is about. 

One of the primary ways people determine which search results might be relevant to their query is by reviewing the titles of listed web pages. That’s why Google Search works hard to provide the best titles for documents in our results…

Google wants the main part of a search result — in between the domain/URL and summary — to be “more readable and accessible.” Introduced last week, the company says testing has shown that this new system is “preferred by searchers.”

The previous approach saw page titles possibly change based on the search query entered by users. This new system produces “titles that work better for documents overall.” As such, different page names will “generally” no longer occur.

Another aspect of this updated page title system sees Google place emphasis on text that “humans can visually see when they arrive at a web page.” Other page text and “text within links that point at pages” might also be factored.

We consider the main visual title or headline shown on a page, content that site owners often place within <H1> tags, within other header tags, or which is made large and prominent through the use of style treatments.

When Search encounters an “extremely long title,” Google will just use the “most relevant portion” and truncate the “more useful parts.” The company might also show site names alongside page titles when helpful. 

For website owners, Google will soon release updated guidance:

However, our main advice on that page to site owners remains the same. Focus on creating great HTML title tags. Of all the ways we generate titles, content from HTML title tags is still by far the most likely used, more than 80% of the time.

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About the Author

Abner Li

Editor-in-chief. Interested in the minutiae of Google and Alphabet. Tips/talk: