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Why are title tags on Google being rewritten?

Posted on August 19, 2021

 

This week, a select number of title tags in search engine result pages (SERPs) seem to have changed, and they are now showing content from the webpage instead.

What is a meta title?

The meta title is the text that you would normally see on Google as the title of a page, and it is also the text shown in the tab of your browser, as highlighted below:

A recent tweet shows some title tags that have been changed to display other content from the webpage:

In the past, Google has also rewritten meta descriptions by finding relevant content in the webpage and using that, instead of using the meta description set on the website. Therefore, it seems that Google is following the same method to set meta titles, so that they are relevant to the keyword being searched.

Brodie Clark, who writes for Search Engine Journal, said that:

“From what I can see, there is no “one factor” involved with this change, with an algorithmic approach designed to create better titles in Google’s search results as a whole. Whether that be taking the new title from a header tag or effectively pulling it out of thin air.”

This shows that Google may even create its own meta title for a website, and the webpage’s content may not be used.

What does this mean for search engine optimisation (SEO)?

Due to the small number of meta titles being rewritten by Google at present, it’s hard to tell if this method is going to be rolled out across the whole of Google SERPs. However, in the past, Google has completed some A/B testing and has changed SERPs back to how they were previously after a while, so it may not continue to rewrite meta titles at all.

At Engage Web, we offer SEO management to increase traffic to your website. Give us a call today to find out more about how SEO can help your business.

  • […] a recent blog post, I looked at Google changing page titles on its search engine results pages (SERPs). Now, Google has given its reasons as to why its […]

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