Find ‘Striking Distance’ Keywords (How To Update Your Title Tags and Header Tags)

June 10, 2023

Are you optimizing your title tags (page meta titles) and on-page header tags (H1-H6)  to increase click-through rate and boost rankings?

You can use Google Search Console to look for opportunities to increase relevant clicks.

Here is an easy way to do it, along with a video showing my exact process.

Example One: A High-Converting Page Is Ranking For A Keyword It Isn’t Optimized For

Say you have a high-converting page (i.e. visitors to that page are highly likely to sign up, call your business, fill out a form, or whatever your conversion goal is).

Looking in Search Console, you notice this page has a lot of impressions and great click-through-rate (CTR) for a certain keyword phrase, but that keyword phrase isn’t the “focus keyword” you designated when you were creating the content.

If that page has an average ranking for that keyword that’s just outside of the “top ten” (say, it’s in position 11-20), and that phrase is not already in the page title tag or the on-page header tags (H1-H6), it’s a no-brainer to go ahead and add it.

Using Ahrefs or Semrush or even Google’s free Keyword Planner, you can check to confirm whether or not that keyword has the user intent, the search volume or the competitiveness that makes it worth going after.

But if you know your audience, you’ll probably have a good sense of whether or not you want to rank higher for the phrase or not.

This doesn’t just apply to a page’s “focus” keyword, by the way. If you see an average position 10-20 ranking for a keyword phrase that isn’t in the headers or the title—or that maybe isn’t on the page at all—it’s an easy win to go ahead pepper that phrase (and its variants!) into your headers

Example Two: A Page Is Ranking For A Totally Random Keyword That (It Turns Out) Could Be Valuable

Taking the same concept a step further, you may notice a page ranking for a high-value keyword when that keyword doesn’t appear on the Page Title or any of the headers. Maybe the page is even ranking in the top ten, and you check out the pages that are ranked higher for that phrase and you think you have a better piece of content, something more helpful to the reader.

Sometimes I’ll see this when a client just wrote a blog post about a topic they wanted to write about but they didn’t do any keyword research or optimize the page around a given phrase. But after a while you’ll notice it’s getting impresssions and clicks for certain phrases.

Using Ahrefs or Semrush or even Google’s free Keyword Planner, you can see if any of those phrases the page is ranking for have the kind of intent or the kind of search volume that make them worth going after. If so, put that phrase into the page title and the H1. It’s an easy win!

Tools used: Google Search Console, SEO META in 1 CLICK (I called it the wrong thing in the video!)

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