Press Release Optimization for Search Engines

Business leaders know the importance of press releases in promoting a company’s services, products and noteworthy announcements. Beyond just getting a press release written, however, is getting the news seen and noticed by its target audience.

Today, press releases provide a large volume of content to search engines and can rank highly in Google, Yahoo and Bing. Studies have shown that journalists and consumers are searching for and reading online press releases for story ideas and background information. This underlines the importance of optimizing your release so that it is easier to find for your audience and so that it can act as a tool to attract and direct traffic to your website.

Here are some tips to help optimize your next press release:

  • Research and choose appropriate keyword phrases
  • Add these keyword phrases (so that they read naturally) to your press release title, sub heading and throughout the body copy
  • Use keyword phrases in links to landing pages or other company website pages instead of phrases like  “Click Here.”
  • Include different media with your release (images, video, audio)
  • Provide your release in multiple formats (text, MS Word, PDF, HTML)
  • In addition to posting your release to your company website (PR/News section), distribute it  through newswire services like PRWebPRNewswire and/or Business Wire
  • Write a blog about the news and include a link
  • Tweet about the release and include a condensed link via or

Title Tags and Search Engines

Previous posts covered the keyword meta tag and the description meta tag. Though HTML title tags aren’t meta tags per se, we usually discuss them in relation to keywords and descriptions. So let’s take a look.

In our opinion, properly deployed title tags give you as much “bang for your buck” as any SEO activity. Sure, backlinks, anchor text, content, etc. are important. And those all are tie-ins to the proper use of title tags. But the title consists of just a few words and can be implemented very easily.

What is it? The title tag appears along with the meta description and keyword tags between the head tags on your page’s code. While the meta data isn’t seen by the page viewer, the title tag is (see below).

How many words? We like to limit the title to eight words or so. The more words you use in the title, the more it dilutes the value of each word. Keeping the amount of keywords down to the most important terms on a page gives more weight to those terms.

Where does it appear? In highly critical areas. The captures above from partner site Widick Marketing show that the title will appear as the link on your listing in the SERPs (search engine results pages) and as it appears at the top of the user’s browser. And the title is your site’s name by default when a user bookmarks your page.

Most importantly, search engines place a high value on the title tag, but it has to be used properly. Stuffing way too many words into the title, or putting words that have nothing to do with your page, won’t help. But putting a few terms that are naturally used on the page, in the H1 headings, in anchor text, in pages linking to your site, in the meta data, etc., helps the search engines know what a page is about and how many other internal and external pages think your page is important for that term or terms. And because you only get so much real estate to use, the search engines know that phrases in your title are highly important on your page.

Finally, make sure each page on your site has a unique title that doesn’t feature your company name as the first few words (you’ll rank well for your company name without this boost). It takes a little effort, but it’s worth the pay off in terms of higher rankings in the search engines and more visitors to your site.