Despite your best efforts to define the title tags for your web pages, Bing may take it upon themselves to serve a different title in the search engine results pages (SERPS). Bing explains their process for choosing title tags in a blog post published this week.
In the post, Bing says that their goal is to “help the user complete their search tasks as efficiently as possible.” In order to do this, Bing will do the following things in the SERPS:
- Titles will be optimized based on relevance to the individual user.
- Entire snippets may be optimized as well.
- Even the display URLs may be optimized at Bing’s discretion.
When optimizing titles, URLs, and snippets, Bing follows complex set of rules that involve combinations of multiple pieces of information.
Long titles might get truncated to fit in the available space. Bing may also incorporate pieces of information in the title based on what it has learned of searchers’ preferences. For example, Bing knows that users like to see business names in titles, so the name of your business may be moved to the front of the title tag.
Bing explains that in some cases they may use other pieces of information from a web page such as OpenGraph annotations, or prominent text extracted from the page. Bing may even use external data sources such as anchor text.
How To Preserve Your Title Tag In Bing’s Search Results
If you put extra time and care into choosing the perfect title tag for your web pages, and would rather Bing not change them on you, then Bing offers the following suggestions:
- Make the HTML Title relevant to the queries that would be used to search your site without being overly long or repetitive. Avoid generic titles like “Home” or “About Us”.
- If you embed OpenGraph, etc., make sure it is consistent with the title you want, and that all the fields are correct, for example that your site name is correct.
- If your site is listed on dmoz.org or other directories make sure the entry is correct.
- Don’t block web crawlers.
Bing also suggests that the way you represent your site is consistent across the web. That means wherever you reference your URL you should ensure that any meta data associated with it is correct and matches the way you want it to be represented.