Writing good titles

I originally created this PowerPoint in 2007 to assist knowledge base writers at my company. As I've worked at different companies and time has passed, I found that this presentation is still relevant.In fact, not only is it still relevant, but it's relevant to more than just titles -- it's relevant to the headings and subheadings in your documents, too.

Many years later, I find myself still referencing these same principles, but I no longer need the presentation to speak to them. Instead I usually weave them into various discussions and make sure they get added appropriately to training and governance related materials.

Here are a few take-aways.

  • Your goal in writing article titles is to get your users/customers to click on the pages of relevance to their situation and to not introduce click fatigue because they've had to view so many articles to find the right one.
  • We browse, we don't read. We did in 2007 and we still do. When viewing a list of search results, we browse for the right article title to click.
  • Promise a benefit in the title (and deliver that benefit it in the article).

You have to view the presentation, Writing Good Titles, to get the rest.

When you finish that, I recommend reading, Your site search isn't as important as you think. At a minimum, search and read the section, "Article titles and metadata."


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