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Increase Your CTR by 38% [New Research]


CTR FormulaTake a look at this very interesting industry study done by HubSpot and Outbrain regarding click-through rates (CTR).  These two powerhouse marketing agencies teamed up to analyze 3+ million headlines. Their goal? To figure out WHY people click on certain titles. One of their findings really stood out:

They found that titles with [brackets] or (parentheses) got 38% more clicks than titles without them. Here’s an example from the study:

A Look Inside Digital Storefront’s Evolution [Interview]


Why Does This Work?

So, why does this work? According to the authors of the study, brackets give people a “clear picture of what lies behind the headline”.  And this makes sense if you think about it.

When you let people know that your content is a checklist, video, blog post, industry study, or interview, they’re MUCH more likely to click. So our question is: “Does this tactic also work for title tags?” As you probably know, organic click-through-rate is an important Google ranking factor. If lots of people all click on the same result, it sends a clear message to Google: “People want to see this page!” And Google will push that page to the top.

Rise to the top of Google


Over the last few years, we at Yroc as well as many other SEO companies have tested brackets and parentheses on title tags.  And they work SUPER well. For example, an authority in the backlink industry Backlinko recently used this title tag on one of their posts: What are LSI Keywords? And Why They Matter For SEO [New Guide]

The brackets are a big reason that the page currently ranks #1 in Google for “LSI keywords”.

Backlink Ranking

The best part? This doesn’t just work for blog content. For example, maybe you’ve begun to run a marketing or lead gen agency, and one of your landing pages is optimized around the keyword: “digital marketing agency Chicago”. Well, put yourself in the shoes of someone that just searched for that keyword. Which result would you rather click on?

Option A: Digital Marketing Agency Chicago (700+ Clients Served)

Option B: Digital Marketing Agency Chicago

Obviously, option A.


CTR Hacks for all Page Types

How about another example? Let’s say that you run an ecommerce site. As you may have noticed, most product page title tags look exactly the same:

Bluetooth Noise Cancelling Headphones

That title tag is OK. But it’s kind of generic. On the other hand, this title tag is MUCH more enticing:

Bluetooth Noise Cancelling Headphones [Free Shipping]


Your Turn

With that, here are a bunch of brackets you can add to your title tags for increased CTR results:

  • (Updated)
  • [Interview]
  • [X% Off]
  • [New Research]
  • (Case Study)
  • (New Guide)
  • [+Checklist]
  • (With Examples)
  • [Video]
  • (Trusted by X Clients)
  • [Flowchart]
  • [Visual Guide]
  • (No Fees)
  • [Template]

So try this tactic out and let us know how it goes!


We live in SEOville, USA, drink only from the fountains that produce the highest ROI, and dine on warm leads. Our goal is to help Optimizers, Agency Owners, Freelancers, Single Moms, Corporation Owners, and you through the complex world of internet marketing.

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