Analyzing Page Titles with Screaming Frog [VIDEO]

I’m sure many of you have read Brian LaFrance’s latest post on how Google looks at your page titles. If you haven’t checked it out yet. Do ett!

In this tutorial, I will show you how to take your page titles and give them a make over! Screaming Frog is an incredible tool to do that with. I’ve released two other tutorials on how to use Screaming Frog, and how to pair Screaming Frog with Google Analytics. Check out the full video tutorial below. Or scroll down for the picture-book-walkthrough.

Step 1 – Page Title Length

Brian and I collected and analyzes thousands of site’s page titles. We found that Google most commonly changes your page titles to be within the 50-59 character range. Fun fact: the optimal pixel width for a title tag is 512 characters.


Step 2 – Filter Options

Feel free to scroll over and filter by Title Length or Title Pixel Width. Simply click on the column title.  


Step 3 – Lower Window Magic

Many Screaming Frog explores seldom use the lower window. I touched on this window in earlier tutorials. But, we’re really going to dive in and take full advantage of these features.

URL Info: This tab contains a snapshot of the following elements:

  • Address
  • Status Code
  • Content Size
  • Title
  • Meta Description
  • H1
  • Canonical Link
  • Word Count
  • Level
  • Inlinks
  • Outlinks

In the next tab over you can view which links are linking to the page you have selected, and are linking away. You can even check on your Anchor Text and Alt Text for each of the links.


Step 5 – Images

This info is helpful to check if your images have the proper Alt Text and what they’re linking to.


Step 6 – Bread Winner! – SERP Snippet

Pro Tip: To bask in the full glory of the SERP Snippet window, resize it be clicking and dragging the dotted lines. 

SERP Snippet: This tab gives you an overview of how your landing page looks in Google.


Step 7 – Check yo’self

If you look to the right of your SERP preview, you can see a character counter and pixel width counter. Screaming Frog highlights the title metrics in red if they are greater than what would be viewable in Google. So helpful!


Step 8 – A New View

This view also allows you to view your SERP Snippet as if you were viewing them on desktop, mobile, or tablet.

step8 - different views

Step 9 – Try, try, again

One really cool tool in Screaming Frog is that you can edit your page titles and meta descriptions. You can use this to edit multiple landing pages and then export those edits and then ad them to your site.

Pro Tip: There is a little bug. If you want to reset the Title & Description to the original version make sure you don’t navigate away from this selected landing page. 

step9- edit or reset

Step 10 – Tips ‘n Tricks

Scroll over different parts of the SERP Snippet to get tips on each other the aspects.

 step10- scroll

Step 11 – Export

Change the titles/meta/keywords/etc to the correct lengths, then export them!

step11- protip-export

Step 12 – Pretty Time!

Check out the conditional formatting section of my tutorial for a detailed walk-through. Or, if you’re most confident in your Excel skills then you can reference these cheat sheets on how to format your results.

step13- formatting step14- formatting

Thank you! 


And happy exporting!

About Tori Cushing

Tori Cushing is a Metrics Maverick at Authority Labs. She specializes in mining through mountains of data to find the precious jewels.

Filed under: Featured, Strategy, Tips


Nate Somsen

This article is superb. By default when I revised title tags, I would make them between 55 to 70 characters and never considered anything such as the pixel width. I will have to read Brian’s Post about how Google looks at your page titles.

I too have used Screaming Frog and have found it useful, but I’ve never had taken it to the level that you have. I, like many others I’m sure, have never considered the bottom section with the multiple tabs. The SERP Snippet tab will definitely be a vital asset that I’ll use from now on. I also found the video rather helpful, because I’m not much of a reader. Watching the video really helped illustrate how to maneuver through Screaming Frog.

I hope in a future blog article, you can explore more of the Page Titles Tag, I have found it useful in identifying additional issues with my title tags such as missing titles, and duplicates. Out of those two which one would you consider to be more damaging to SEO?

Once again, great article and keep up the great work!

Tori Cushing

Hi Nate! Thank you for your incredible feedback. Somehow this was lost in my inbox. I would say that even though I don’t think duplicate title are as harmful if you use canonical tag to cover that up. Blank, you’ve lost all real estate. But it’s just picking your poisons at that point.

Also, I think that duplicate and missing title tags in Screaming Frog would mean a great post. Thank you, again for all the feedback!

Tori Cushing

Thank you for this wonderful feedback, Nate! I’m so glad you enjoyed the video. I put a lot of effort into them, so I’m really glad you got a lot out of it.

I would say that missing Page Titles all together is very detrimental to your page. Although neither are desirable, I would say a couple duplicates are better than no page title.

Thank you!

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