One of the questions that any SEO professional needs to be concerned with is whether or not your headlines are attracting clicks, regardless of where they happen to be on the results page. One clever blogger over at SEOMoz came up with a way to check on this – SERP Turkey. In essence, this program is designed to allow you to see which headline most people will click for any given keyword search.
Why This Matters
The fact is that getting accurate information about titles is important because for all that you may get yourself highly ranked, if you don’t get a good click through rate, it won’t really make a whole lot of difference in the grand scheme of things. After all, rankings aren’t worth a whole hill of beans if you happen to be getting very few clicks.
Another thing that you can do with SERP Turkey which I found interesting is that you can set up limits on Google and have it search only titles which you set up so that you can in essence create a split test of different titles to see which ones might actually get higher click through rates. SERP Turkey makes this easy by in essence allowing you to import a Google search results page and then set up your test.
How It Works
Basically, in order to use SERP Turkey, you do have to spend a bit of money. Not much money. But as little bit of money is still needed. In essence, what you’ll be doing is setting up a SERP Turkey page which will allow people to choose the headline they feel best matches a given keyword. Now, you may be asking, how do you get people to take your little survey? Well the answer there is – you spend money.
Enter Mechanical Turk
Amazon Mechanical Turk is a website I’ve written about in the past. It’s designed to allow you to pay people for various small tasks – everything from looking at your YouTube videos in order to improve your view rate to taking surveys to getting content written for your website (be forewarned though that content writing on Mechanical Turk tends to be pretty bad quality).
The author of SERP Turkey suggests that you simply set up an Amazon Mechanical Turk job and offer it to all comers to have them take your survey. You can then set up a page which includes all first page results for a given keyword (thus allowing you to see which of your competitors would get higher click throughs, assuming you don’t rank in the top page) or set up a site specific search if you want to split test your titles.
Be Sure to Be Careful About Countries
Since you’re not likely to pay more than a few cents for each person doing your survey, you’re likely to attract lots of people from lower income countries. This can skew your results because, if you are primarily targeting Americans, results from say Indians may not be quite as accurate as you’d like them to be.
You can however choose which countries to allow for your Mechanical Turk jobs. Be forewarned however that if you want only Americans, it may take longer and you may have to offer higher pay to get them to do your job.
Other Ways to Get Survey Results
You can also ask people on Twitter or even on your mailing list to take a look. While SERP Turkey doesn’t seem to have a way to track individual clicks, if you did this through something like your Aweber account, you could potentially use a redirect and thus find out who is doing the survey. Then, simply offer a raffle for the participants (be sure you have enough people to justify your gift though).
Either way, SERP Turkey is a neat little program which is offered for free in and of itself and which can help you to pick out some useful data about which titles and or meta descriptions are more likely to attract click throughs.