Optimizing Titles for Articles in a Series

Creating titles for a series of related articles is easy – provided you follow 3 simple guidelines.

We often refer to the concept of “article sets” – articles that are related, yet stand-alone. If you write article sets for any length of time, you’ll inevitably create a few in which the articles are so interrelated that they fundamentally form a sequential series – one where each article flows naturally into the next.

Trouble is, EzineArticles by its very nature is not conducive to a sequential series of articles. Readers tend to find your articles as single links in the chain rather than the entire chain … and most will not be inclined to search for those missing links in your article series. So using common literary title additions like Part 1, Part 2, etc. isn’t recommended.

The key to solving this dilemma lies in creating titles that are optimized for the unique nature of articles in a series. Understanding WHY proper titles are so important will help you discover HOW to create the perfect titles for your next series.

3 Vital Considerations for Titles in an Article Series:

  1. Articles Need to Deliver on the Promises of the Title – If your title reads “10 Tips to Regrow Your Hair” but only one tip is given, the article has not delivered on the promise made in the title! If you tell your reader that something’s going to be there and it’s not, you’ve just created a negative user experience and severely reduced your credibility as an author.
     
  2. Articles Need to Stand Alone – Ask yourself, “Does the reader have to look at my other articles in this series to get the benefit?” If the answer is no, then the article stands alone. Articles that stand alone amplify the power of your series articles by providing so much benefit that the reader seeks out more articles written by you.
     
  3. Articles Need to be Optimized for Distribution – Remember, the traffic your article receives on our site is only the tip of the iceberg when it comes to potential exposure. The problem is that series articles rarely get picked up and distributed. Publishers are looking for specific content – so not everything in your series will be applicable to them.

So how do you write series article titles that are distributor friendly? That’s easy – just remove the numbers!

Instead of using phrases like “Part 1 of 3” to identify your articles in a series (boring and SEO unfriendly), use a phrase with applicable keywords (interesting and very SEO friendly)!

For Example:

  • “5 Ways to Produce the Perfect Video – Hiring Qualified Talent” – BADThis article doesn’t deliver because it only talks about one issue, not five like the title promises.
     
  • “Producing the Perfect Video – Hiring Qualified Talent” – PERFECTThis title is specific, still in a series and optimized for success – exactly what readers and publishers are looking for!

In the end, everybody benefits when your series articles’ titles are optimized. Your readers have a positive user experience. Our Editors get the pleasure of approving your article quickly. Distributors and publishers quickly find the information they’re seeking. And best of all, you’ll increase your potential of getting more readers, additional website traffic, increased exposure and enhanced credibility as an author!!

Leave a comment to share how you’ve achieved success with series articles.

31 Comments »


1
Renz writes:

Very informative. Thanks for the info!

Comment provided May 19, 2010 at 10:27 AM

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2
Lisa Scott writes:

I am in the middle of writing a series of articles and was just wondering how to handle it for submission to your site. Perfect timing!

Comment provided May 19, 2010 at 10:40 AM

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I’m starting to discover that we’re kind of psychic that way … we get this comment often.

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Lisa writes:

It’s true… and quite eerie. :p

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I’d like to think that it’s just a sign of how in tune we are with our members. :)

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You could still use the series eg 5 Ways to Produce the Perfect Video, and talk about all the 5 Ways in a summarised version. And you are still delivering as well.

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Excellent point, Gerry! That would be another article from the same source material. :)

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3
Keith writes:

Would it be acceptable (below the fold, of course!), to add a link to an earlier title in the same sequence? Or does this have to go as part of the author’s bio?

Would be great to be able to interlink articles or even an automatic list of “Other Recent EzineArticles from the XXX category by YYY” rather than jumping to the article source page.

Comment provided May 19, 2010 at 11:38 AM

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4
ChrisCD writes:

I committed the “cardinal sin” and included Part II,III, & IV on a series. They actually get decent looks, but the 2nd must be more aligned with what we do, it gets much better click-thru rates.

cd :O)

Comment provided May 19, 2010 at 12:31 PM

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5
Jack Krohn writes:

I tried that once and learned the hard way it is ineffective. Where were you 30 mos ago? Ha. I did learn though

Comment provided May 19, 2010 at 1:15 PM

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6
Ata writes:

Well written article.
Interesting that some of these points are mentioned in EzineArticles submission guidelines

Comment provided May 19, 2010 at 1:15 PM

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7
Hiram "Mayor" Evans writes:

Very timely, for me. I am not an atricle writer at this time, but I had planned to become one. For my first atricles, I have planned to write on a subject that actually would be a series. Until reading this blog, I acutally had been not sure just how to do it.

Hiram “Mayor” Evans

Comment provided May 19, 2010 at 1:20 PM

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8
Sean Breslin writes:

This article makes sense I started to apply the principles and saw a growth in traffic. Which was one the purposes behind writing in the first place.

Well worth reading the tips again.

Comment provided May 19, 2010 at 1:26 PM

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9
Lisa writes:

Fantastic info, Penny! Much to be learned here.

Comment provided May 19, 2010 at 3:16 PM

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10
Ramona Hall writes:

Thanks so much for the input. I was just sitting down to write the third article in a 3 article series. Was feeling down because the first two had very little traffic. Now I have some good ideas for making my series more approachable. Nice article.

Comment provided May 19, 2010 at 5:48 PM

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11

Simple and concise, thanks.

I am looking at getting into the Video marketing side of SEO as well. You have helped me with this also.

Comment provided May 19, 2010 at 6:02 PM

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12
Rosis writes:

Useful information,Learn more here,

Comment provided May 19, 2010 at 7:58 PM

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13

Well, I would appreciate the support and guidance of Penny in this regards

Comment provided May 19, 2010 at 8:51 PM

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14
Mel writes:

After reading your article, it’s so obvious that the title of each article should be able to stand alone, but this fact is so easy to overlook when you’re in the midst of concentrating on what you’re writing and why. Great tips!

Comment provided May 19, 2010 at 9:47 PM

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15
Jose Bulao writes:

Thanks for these suggestions. I wrote a series of articles here before. It was a 12-part articles. I took away Part 1, Part 2, although in my blog they were there. I simply rewrote the titles.

Your suggestions gave me more ideas on how to do this.

Comment provided May 19, 2010 at 10:25 PM

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16
Steven writes:

Guilty as charged:)) Made that mistake on my blog. Know better now though, as you so clearly state, all articles must stand alone. Steven

Comment provided May 20, 2010 at 1:15 AM

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17
Jeff Herring writes:

Lots of my students and members struggle with this – how to create titles for an article series WITHOUT including numbers – THANKS!

~ Jeff

Comment provided May 20, 2010 at 5:49 AM

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18
Bob Turel writes:

Thanks for such an enlightening article Penny. For a newbie like me, the articles suggestions are a golden pathway to more successful and useful writing!

Comment provided May 20, 2010 at 8:55 AM

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19
Ryan writes:

I did something similar to the example but used the word “more” after the number. I found that I got half the traffic of the first one which was acceptable at the time.

Comment provided May 20, 2010 at 10:07 AM

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20
Rob Britt writes:

I hadn’t thought about it this way before. Makes perfect sense when you spell it out like that. I have a series that was labeled parts1,2 and 3. Last time I do that.
Thanks

PS – nothing to do with this post, but the captcha with the different colors can be sort of difficult for the color blind. light grays and blues tend to blend with the background…

Comment provided May 21, 2010 at 9:26 AM

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21
Nicholas Wind writes:

This is such a great blog to learn from for FREE.
I am learning to write after the age of 50 ..54 now and it’s exciting to get this quality of teaching for free.
After I set up my 1st blog and started to post I did not expect to love it.
I do and built or had built a fully optimized second word press blog for my business.
The link I have goes there.
If you are new and wonder about having a blog or not.
Just do it…google loves them ,especially if done properly.
Thanks EzineArticles for leading as you do!

Comment provided May 24, 2010 at 11:10 AM

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22
Akm Mustofa writes:

Those information are very good for newcomer like me. Hope you will keep it continue.

Comment provided May 28, 2010 at 5:44 AM

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23
Barry writes:

Thanks for this info, you folks are just great.

Every day in every way I uh…

I’ll be back.

Comment provided June 10, 2010 at 6:14 PM

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24

I’m not new to all of this but the effectiveness and efficiency of the topic discussed here is very relevant to me. For example I used to write articles and add the part 1 and part to its corresponding article and here I learn it’s a no no. Thank you for the 3rd point, I learned something new.

Comment provided January 21, 2012 at 7:03 AM

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25
Petar Dugz writes:

I have a 3 piece stand alone but continuous article, I had done much about the article body but had no clue on how to go about the article, anchor texts and links.
looking and learning from your article just gave me so much author value.
Thank you.

Comment provided March 6, 2012 at 2:09 AM

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26

thought about how to break my very long article into 3 all weekend…this information is what i needed so am going to do as suggested right now.

Comment provided August 14, 2012 at 11:07 AM

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