It looks like Google have just increased the number of characters that display in the SERPs (search engine results pages)
Marketers who have been tracking page title lengths over the years (gotta love that dedication) have reported that average length of page titles in search results has increased from 55 characters to 83 characters on average, as of late September 2018.
As you can see in the graph below, the length has been increasing incrementally over the last little while, but shot up towards the end of September and has remained steady since, suggesting that this may not be just a test.
Image source: https://www.searchenginejournal.com/google-reportedly-extends-the-length-of-page-titles-in-search-results/271981/
Why Should You Care?
Any opportunity to further tempt the reader to click through is something to keep an eye on – hence the reason marketers were tracking title lengths in the first place.
More characters equals more opportunity to ‘sell’ your content and differentiate your result from your competitors’. Telling readers more about what’s on your page usually results in higher click through rates, as well as more qualified leads clicking through.
While it’s something to keep an eye on, we wouldn’t recommend making any changes to your titles just yet. It looks like it’s here to stay, but Google have yet to make an official announcement about it. In cases like these (where the change is unconfirmed and work could potentially be very time-consuming) it’s safest to wait and watch. We’ll certainly be watching this thread and will be sure to update this post if anything changes.Tags: search engine optimisation, search results, title tags
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