These are the results of some experimentation that I’ve been doing with my article titles at Associated Content. The goal was to see how key, search words affect the page view count (PV) of an article. I hope you find it helpful in constructing your own titles. Keep in mind most of these articles were submitted to AC without up-front payment. Most are satire and comedy. I might be mixing apples and oranges from a content perspective, but this is only about the titles.
I’m not the most prolific writer at AC. I hold no illusions that these are huge page view numbers though they might be typical. You can start laughing now if you’r one of those CP that gets 10k per article. If you are one of those rare animals, you don’t need this analysis so bugger off.
My blog has a “What terms were used to find your blog” report. Since I have the titles of all of my articles on this blog, this is the source of my comments about how the article was searched. The following table outlines the hit count, title and my analysis of why it worked or didn’t.
|717||Amazing New Nonlethal Self Defense Product Just Out||A farce product promotion. Non-paid. The keywords “nonlethal” “self defense” appear to keep this one afloat.|
|375||Hollywood Elects Al Gore King of the World||Rattled off in an hour during the Oscars. Non-paid. Seems either no one thought this was funny or no one is interested in Al Gore or Hollywood. Probably the former.|
|1,164||Annoying and Dangerous Driving Habits||Decent traffic. Non-paid. “Annoying” “Driving Habits” and a few times “Annoying Driving Habits” were used to find this article.|
|1,266||Netflix is Scaring Me||Decent traffic. Non-paid. Obviously, anything with “Netflix” in it is a gem. Add “Scaring Me” to pique the human curiosity.|
|457||Chinese Missile Destroys Satellite||This is a send-up of a fairly big news story. Non-paid. Probably dated. I thought this would have done better. Maybe it was too late after the event to get hits. Lesson learned about news? Maybe.|
|1,010||Cheap Overlooked Vacation Packages||Non-paid. This is my favorite as far as titles go. I did this intentionally to scoop up page views from people looking for travel destinations. I love imagining the shock and anger at finding this spoof. Seems to be working, too.|
|965||Cell Phone Use in Polite Society||Non-paid. “Cell Phone” is probably the reason this did fairly well. That and it’s an excellent treaties on our modern world.|
|278||Holiday Shopping Hints or How to Serve Your Country||Something that had been brewing in my head for a long time. Non-paid. Maybe the low traffic is the result of the non-season currently. More likely, I over did this title by adding the “or.” It may have done better with a different title.|
|1,252||Relationships What Women Want||You got to love this one. Non-paid. This one is still getting hit. I named it after the movie title on purpose. Beyond a very good title, it’s a wildly amusing article.|
|230||Confessions of an AC Content Producer 3||Done on a bet, sort of. Non-paid. Obviously no one cares about the internal workings of the AC CP community or the ranting of one of it’s more maniacal content producers.|
|846||Debunking Astrology Myth in the Modern Era||Done on a bet, actually. Paid. I was presently surprised that AC paid $8 for this. It was a slow start, but it is racking up the hits monthly. This is as close to “evergreen” as I may every come.|
|410||When Veterans Day is Personal||Very personal. Non-paid. Maybe it will do better in November. This is why AC doesn’t pay for memoirs. I think this is my best article to date, but the personal aspect of it is a PV-killer.|
|428||AntiPsychic for Hire||A farce; a jab. Non-paid. I should have separated the word “Psychic” from the rest. That may have helped.|
|4,349||My Top Eight Reasons for Hating MySpace.com||Yep. Non-paid. Who knew? 4k and growing. This gets hit at least every other day. “top eight” “MySpace” are the keys here. I was getting so much crap from the Spacers that I had to change the link to this article on my blog to apologize to their search engine.|
Quite frankly, I don’t know what this tells us. Keywords in your title are crucial to the success of your article. What you put in and what you leave out can make all the difference. I’m sure there are those who are going to laugh at my paltry page views, but from a statistical point of view, I think this is a valid, if non-scientific, analysis.
I invite your comments and would love to see your experience. Take a minute to look at your PV-to-title ratio and let us know if what I see is what you see.