I'm encountering a strange behaviour of Google.

Pages in my site has the form :

<title>Title of Article - mysite</title>
 <img alt='mysite logo'>

So I expect this page to show as "Title of Article - mysite" in the clickable link of google SERP.

However, it is displayed as "Title of Article - mysite - mysite logo".

Why the heck is it fetching part of body as the title?

How can I prevent this from happening ?

Thanks !

  • Is your alt text really "mysite logo"? If so, consider that screenreaders users will hear "mysite logo" on every page. Change it to "mysite". Google might well stop duplicating it, too! – Olly Hodgson Jul 18 '13 at 16:31
  • yes that's the best solution, if I cannot prevent google from fetching it. – jeff Jul 18 '13 at 23:30

Google may or may not use your actual "title" element's text. There are a number of reasons for this but mostly its because "google" decided your page title is : too long, malformed, not descriptive of the content on the page, etc.. the contextual list goes on

Protip: Shorten your page title, focus it, hone it = google wont replace it

  • 1
    +1 Basically Google is choosing a "title" in the SERPs that it thinks is more relevant to what the user has searched for. – MrWhite Jul 18 '13 at 7:03
  • 1
    Thank you! But really it is short, my site name is 8 chars long, so the URL's are shorter than a lot of sites, including stackoverflow. So I thought I should make it longer. I am afraid if I make it shorter, it will fetch more body. Am I wrong ? – jeff Jul 18 '13 at 11:27
  • Your title tag should be around 69 characters in length at most. If you are simply using your site name as the title tag Google may perceive that it is not providing additional information to the searcher. You should try using something more descriptive, followed by your branding so that if it is truncated, it will be the branding which is cut short. For example it should look like "YourService | YourSite" – Jaryd Buggins Jul 18 '13 at 18:51
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    Cengiz, it is doing the opposite - it's deeming your title too short so adding what it thinks, wrongly or rightly, is extra info from the page. Try creating a longer title. – Max Jul 19 '13 at 3:40
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    @moobot yes that's what I was thinking, but I got confused from seeing "shorten your title" seo tips everywhere. – jeff Jul 21 '13 at 0:58

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