To say that headlines are important would be somewhat of an understatement.
According to Neil Patel of QuickSprout, 80% of people will read a headline, but only 20% go on to read the entire article. A really good headline can spike your traffic by as much as 500% – so it’s definitely worth the time it takes to craft the perfect headline. As most of us know, coming up with a good headline can be time-consuming.
Top content marketers will spend hours coming up with dozens of headlines, using the process of elimination to choose the best one. Headlines should provoke curiosity while giving a good idea of what your content is about without being too misleading. If users feel that your content doesn’t match up the headline you’ve created, they will lose trust in your brand.
Creating headlines solely to grab attention is called ‘clickbaiting’ and generally creates a negative customer experience. Learn how to avoid clickbait headlines and write better headlines with these five free tools.
1. Keyword Tool This tool is a fantastic place to start your headline creation process! http://keywordtool.io/ is a free alternative to Google Keyword Planner and can help you come up with awesome headlines and article ideas. Simply type in your topic or keyword, and you’ll be given a huge list of keywords that show what people are searching for. The only downside to this free tool is that you have to pay to see search volumes, cost-per-click and competition data. It may be worth investing in a good keyword research product, but until then – this tool can help you craft a headline with keywords searchers are looking for.
2. Buzzsumo http://buzzsumo.com/ is another great free resource that gives you an insight to your competition and the most-shared content on their website. To effectively use this tool, enter a topic or the name of a similar company and analyze the results. Take pointers from this list of content and write an article that you think would perform even better. Sometimes a good headline is all it takes to get social media shares, so make sure that your headline is the best one on the list. Create a headline that is unique, but still accurately describes your content and grabs the reader’s attention. Buzzsumo limits the number of searches you can make each day, but if you use it regularly you can upgrade to their paid service.
3. Google Trends Google Trends can be an invaluable tool when it comes to keyword research for headlines. Ever wonder if a slight change of wording would make your headline immensely more popular? Google Trends can give you a quick answer to that question by comparing two different search terms and showing their popularity over time. You can use Google Trends to find trending searches, search data by different regions, and search interest for a particular keyword over time. This is a great resource for finding ideas for new content and comparing keywords so your headline has maximum potential. Google Trends is free for anyone to use and doesn’t have a paid version, another plus.
4. CoSchedule’s Headline Analyzer CoSchedule’s Headline Analyzer is the tool I find myself using the most often – it’s so valuable in helping you reword your headlines for the best impact. It takes the headline you’ve written and gives you a score based on the words you used, headline type, and emotional context. Headlines that aren’t very descriptive or don’t use ‘power words’ that convey emotion score lower than headlines with a high emotional impact and searchable keywords. This tool also shows you how your headline looks when displayed on a Google search results page, which will help you adjust the number of characters so readers don’t glaze over your content.
5. Portent’s Content Generator Online content generators can help you come up with new content ideas and awesome headlines. They use formulas based on popular headlines around the web, but all you have to do is enter your topic to get hundreds of headline suggestions. Some of these headlines won’t make sense, but if you’re looking for a way to get your gears turning – start with a headline generator. What tools do you use to help you write awesome headlines? Did you find any of these tools helpful? Let us know in the comments and thanks for reading!