For some time, debate has raged as to the potential benefits or consequences of daily page title alterations. Some have sworn that to update page title every day is a great way to maximise the SEO value of their content, while others have warned quite the opposite is the case.
In theory, there is enough logic on both sides of the argument to support such a case.
John Mueller Weighs In
Putting the debate to rest once and for all, Google’s search guru himself, John Mueller, has added his two cents to the whole thing. Mr Mueller was sharing a few words of wisdom during the Google Search Central SEO office-hours hangout recorded on February 4, within which the topic of daily page title changes was brought up.
Specifically, a chap by the name of Askash Singh, a professional SEO, asked Mueller how page title changes affected SEO. He was concerned how given the nature of the site he runs, a stock market portal updated in real-time makes it necessary for him to change his page titles on a regular basis.
Mr Mueller was asked whether this may be an issue from an SEO perspective, to which he offered the following advice:
“I think that’s fine. I mean, it’s something where we wouldn’t give it any special weight if your title tag keeps changing. But if you want to update your titles regularly that’s totally up to you,”
“The difficulty, I suspect, is more that if you change your titles on a daily basis, we might not re-crawl that page on a daily basis. So it might be that you change it every day, but in the search results the title that we show is a few days old just because that’s the last version that we picked up from that page. But that’s more of, I’d say, like a practical effect, rather than a strategic effect.”
In a nutshell, confirmation direct from the horse’s mouth that changing page titles daily is no real cause for concern. It is not something that is going to bring you any real SEO benefit, due to the fact that Google is unlikely to update your page titles in its own results daily.
However, if it is necessary to continuously change your page titles for the benefit of your users and to reflect ongoing topical changes, you are perfectly entitled to do so.
More Interest from Google’s Bots?
Delving a little deeper, Singh asked Mueller whether continuously changing page titles based on time-sensitive information could alter the way Google’s bots look at the site.
If you are regularly updating your pages and your titles with the latest real-time information, will Google take note and pay closer attention to your site?
The answer, according to Mr Mueller, is fairly straightforward:
“I mean, it helps us to recognize when something has changed, but it’s not necessarily going to happen that we’re going to say ‘oh, we’ve seen this page change every day. Therefore, we will recrawl it every day.”
It might be that we re-crawl it every day, it might be that we re-crawl it every week or every month. So it’s not that the changes that you make with the titles would affect how quickly we re-crawl.”
Roughly summarised, even a site with content updated in real time and daily page title changes is not going to be given any special treatment by Google. Instead, it will only be updated every week or even every month, as would be the case with a more conventional site.
So while regularly changing page titles is certainly not an issue, it is not going to bring your site any specific SEO benefits from Google.