What Does a Great, Clickable Headline Look Like?

A good headline is essential for almost any type of marketing message, from advertisements to sales letters. It’s also important for your blog posts.

If you publish a blog on your business website, creating more engaging and compelling headlines is essential if you want to get more clicks.

So what should these look like? There is no one way to write a headline that gets clicks, and there are various techniques you can use, some of which you can use in combination.

Here are 11 ideas to create a clickable headline:

1. Promise Something of Value

Ideally, a headline should promise the reader something of value for reading on. The headline’s primary task is to get people to read past the headline. If you suggest that there is something of value inside the content, this can encourage people to read on.

Basically, make it clear why your blog is worth their time. This could be how to do something quickly, discover some little-known piece of information or learn something important. These are all options that provide a clear benefit to the reader.

2. Provoke Curiosity

Curiosity is a classic sales writing technique used in emails, sales letters, and advertisements. You can use it in your blog posts too.

It can be hard to get it right, but the idea is to provide a clear value proposition without giving too much away. For example, you could write a headline like ‘3 Fast and Cheap Ways to Redecorate Your Home’.

By doing this, you’re not giving away the information and the reader has to read on to find out more.

3. Be Specific

Although curiosity can be effective, don’t make your headline too vague. Try to be clear and specific to give the reader a good idea of what to expect inside. Then they can better decide whether it is worth their time reading on.

For example, ‘Learn to Fish’ is too vague. But ‘Learn How to Fish in 3 Days Without Spending a Penny’ is specific and more enticing.

4. Use Numbers and Lists

One of the simplest ways to make your headline stand out is to make use of numbers and figures. When you use a number, this gets attention, especially when you use it in list format. We are attracted to numbers because we like lists. A list suggests that the content will be quick and easy to read, which draws us in.

You could also use numbers in the form of a statistic. This suggests that the content is specific and well-researched, which again draws the reader in.

5. Use Fear

Fear is often a good option for your headlines. You can use this by implying that the reader is missing out on important information that could help them in some way if they do not read on. A headline like ‘5 Surefire Ways to Die Younger’ will get people desperate to find out more.

You could also suggest that they are being lied to, or imply that they are missing out on some crucial information that could help them. It’s not something you want to do with every blog, but use it sparingly and it can be very effective.

6. Use the ‘How To’ Format

The ‘How To’ blog format has been around since the first blogs started appearing, and that’s because it works. It’s one of the classic headline formulas and it immediately implies that the reader will find useful information inside.

People want information, they want to educate themselves, and this is a headline format that clearly suggests they will be able to do that. Just don’t overdo it by using it for all your headlines.

7. Write for Search Engine Clicks

When thinking of a clickable headline, you won’t often think of keywords. But keywords can play an important role. When you include your main keyword in the title, if someone searches for that keyword and your link shows up, the keyword will be highlighted. This can make it stand out more and get more clicks.

Also, don’t forget about the length. Try to keep the headline to about 60 characters because if you go too far over this, it is likely to get chopped off in the search results. If your entire title is displayed, it is more likely to get clicked on.

8. Add Some Drama

Be bold in your headlines. Don’t be timid and boring. Mention words like ‘secret’ and ‘ultimate’. Use power words, exciting verbs and adjectives. Don’t lie or mislead, but do make it sound more interesting with the language you use.

9. Focus on the Audience

When you’re writing your headline, always keep the audience in mind. This is where your all-important customer segments can really come in handy. If you’ve been successfully building your segments, then you’ll know them inside and out. As such, you’ll know who they are and what they want.

And if you’ve only recently come into a business or you’ve bought an online business and you’re unfamiliar with your audience, the premade customer segments will provide you with a valuable insight into your new audience. Know your audience, and you’ll know what makes them tick, helping you write headlines that they will read too.

So think about them and what they want, then provide the information they are looking for. Understand their hopes, dreams, and fears, then write around these and you can’t go too far wrong. In your headline, clearly make reference to the topic, and it is sure to catch the eye of your target audience.

10. Ask a Question

Questions are a great technique for headlines. When people see a question, they automatically think of the answer. It gets them involved in the article and draws them in. If anything, they might click just to find out if they were right.

11. Be Creative and Different

Finally, try and be creative with your headlines. Don’t write the same old headlines that everyone else is using. Change things up and make your headlines stand out. Surprise people who come across the headline. Be controversial, or just say something in a different way. This is hard to do, but it will help your headline get noticed, leading to more clicks.

You can write the best blog post on a topic, but if the headline is weak, it will never get as many readers as it could. These tricks can all be used in different ways to make your headlines stand out and get noticed and clicked.

Don’t add a headline in a few minutes at the end. Spend time over each and every headline. You’ve gone to the trouble of creating the content, so now spend some time coming up with a headline that does it justice, and get more clicks.

As always, if you found this article helpful please consider sharing it – thank you, it’s very much appreciated.

2 thoughts on “What Does a Great, Clickable Headline Look Like?”

  1. Hi Victoria,

    Clickable headlines is the most effective way to generate more clicks on your content and boost traffic. Numbered, lists and how to posts always attract people. The same time survey reports and case studies help to grab more eyeballs.

  2. Hi,
    I agree with your tips. I have trouble with the measurable headline because I don’t know if it will take them “3 days” etc.


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