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Every Page Should Have a Major Headline. Yes. Every. One.

I have already written a page title? Do I really need a headline too?

Yes. Yes, you do.

It may seem redundant, but a page title is not visible on the page itself. It appears at the top of the window or in other contexts like search engine results. Your major headline, however, is part of the page and should appear at the top or near the top of that page. A good major headline should give information hunters and gatherers a clear sense of why they should stop on your page.

Say you are working on an audio essay for a first year writing class and you are searching for information on how to use Audacity, the open source audio software. You do a google search and click on a link leading you to a page with the following major headline:

Page 1

Do you think you will read on, or will you return to your Google search for another page?

What if, instead, you found the following major headline:

Using Audacity to Recreate the Autotune Effect

As a reader, you may or may not know that this page will help turn you into the next T-Pain, but at least you know that it isn’t a site about comma splices, online casinos, or Twilight.

Put your major headline at the top of each of your pages. Tell us what your page is about and make that topic easy to find.