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blogger logo As some of you may know for my previous post - Write a Novel In 30 Days! - Write a Novel In 30 Days! Read More here on MUO about NaNoWriMo, where I set up a blog about me writing a novel in thirty days. Normally when I set up a blog it becomes like a new-born child to me – I nurture it, I take care of it, I fight off the spammers and so on. And as I’m sure Ryan, our SEO guy here at MUO will testify to,  SEO is important to any blog – especially in the early stages.

As he discussed here in How To Start A Blog That Gets Instant Traffic How To Start A Blog That Gets Instant Traffic How To Start A Blog That Gets Instant Traffic Read More , it’s vitally important that you write content that is SEO optimized for search engine traffic. Yet there is one SEO trick that is overlooked quite a lot by Blogger users which could boost their traffic; how they appear in the search results. And I’m not talking about where they appear, but how they appear.

Below is a screenshot of my new blog in the Google search results next to MakeUseOf in the search results. Notice anything different between the two SEO-wise?

SEO TIP - Google Results

SEO TIP - google results - MUO

It’s in the titles. You can see that my blog’s title is NovelInThirtyDays. Now for some reason I can’t see many people Googling that anytime soon. However, look at the MUO title: “˜Cool Websites, Software and Internet Tips‘. Many more people will Google things like that, thus driving more traffic to the site.


So in short, my advice is to change how your blog’s title appears in the search results. One of the best ways to do this for a small to medium blog is to reverse the order in which the blog title and post title are displayed so that the post title comes first. This will SEO optimize every post.

Here’s how.

Log into the Blogger dashboard and select your blog. For demonstration purposes we’ll be breaking out the MUO test blog again. By the way, it has changed significantly in appearance since my last blogger post, because I used it to test coding and themes.

SEO TIp - blogger toolbar

Select your blog and then click “˜Layout‘ along the top. Underneath this, select “˜Edit HTML‘.

Using CTRL + F, find the following piece of HTML code:


In most templates it’s around 5-10 lines from the top. Replace that code with the following code:

<b:if cond=`data:blog.pageType == &quot;index&quot;’>
<title><data:blog.pageName/> | <data:blog.title/></title>


Once you have pasted that into the HTML as shown in the above screenshot, your Post titles should appear first in Google search results (not immediately though, Google will have to crawl your blog first before it changes).

However, the SEO optimized results will be noticeable immediately in the tab along the top of your browser.

MUO TIP - results MUO testSo now when people search a phrase that appears in the title of a post on your blog, your post will appear higher in the search results. This is a much more likely scenario than someone searching for the actual title of your blog.

For more tips about how to SEO optimize your blog so it gets more traffic, see Ryan’s post entitled How To Start A Blog That Gets Instant Traffic How To Start A Blog That Gets Instant Traffic How To Start A Blog That Gets Instant Traffic Read More .

For more ‘Blogger’ tips see my recent article entitled 4 Easy Tips to Improve Your Blogger Blog 4 Easy Tips to Improve Your Blogger Blog 4 Easy Tips to Improve Your Blogger Blog Read More .

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  1. Tim Brydges
    December 28, 2009 at 8:09 am

    I got it to work, looks good.

  2. arizona search engine optimization
    December 3, 2009 at 1:35 am

    nice post ,content very helpful information .thanks for sharing

  3. Manuel
    December 2, 2009 at 2:04 am

    Thanks a lot, it worked in my blog, ie, with a minor tweak.
    I had to replace the symbol ` with ' in the first line of code. Once ahain thank you so much :-)

  4. Prince Gomolvilas
    November 27, 2009 at 2:37 pm

    Dean, this is awesome. Thank you.

  5. seo india
    November 17, 2009 at 10:10 am

    This is one the great tips and techniqes for blogger, i have update same HTML code in my blog - with in month my traffic and ranking go high...

    thanks for your sharing

  6. satya sheel pandey
    November 12, 2009 at 12:19 pm

    first of all ,when u paste the code single quote('),is changed while pasting ,so edit it and make it single quote.

    Second, please check there should be no some textbefore this code.if there is one the changes will not reflect.

  7. Jorge
    November 12, 2009 at 2:15 am

    very cool, I'd tried it on my blog and it works fine.

  8. immunis
    November 8, 2009 at 4:37 pm

    Jen -

    I've got the same problem. I've made every change suggested here and my posts still are by blog title instead of post title. :(

  9. jen
    November 8, 2009 at 7:17 am

    The code was save successfully, but the change is not showing up in the browser. The address to my posts are still beginning with my blog name not the post name even though i've saved the code to my html.

  10. joel
    November 4, 2009 at 2:48 am

    Very interesting information here. It sounds that the code would be very useful. I will give a try as soon as possible.
    Thanks for sharing such a nice information.

  11. SEO Wanna Be
    November 3, 2009 at 9:04 pm

    Hi your post is amazing, It's incredible, I learned a lot about SEO and Man, this thing's getting better and better as I learn more about internet marketing. Also as part of my ongoing mission to find the absolute best tools to make money, this is without a doubt at the top of my list. Everything happened so fast!

  12. immunis
    October 29, 2009 at 10:10 pm

    I've copied the text and got an error as many have discussed. I changed the ' in the second line to " and was able to proceed. Still my titles are not what are getting picked up.

    Just looked at the code and the " has reverted to '

    This is what I have now. Any suggestions?


  13. Babette
    October 26, 2009 at 11:49 pm

    Wow! Thanks all. I relied on Andy's repost to clear acceptable code requirements. I've been trying to manage this for - God - years now. Onward Democracy!

  14. hasmat
    October 26, 2009 at 11:31 am

    Very useful tips. I am really looking for this kind of blog. I know a little html.

  15. Jimmy
    October 25, 2009 at 6:57 pm

    How do I do the same trick for a wordpress websites?

  16. Bruce
    October 25, 2009 at 2:30 pm

    Thanks Andy, could preview and save without problems.

    • Andy
      October 26, 2009 at 5:25 am

      No problem Bruce

  17. Andy
    October 25, 2009 at 9:14 am

    Here is a link to the code that I used that works on my blogger account.

    Hope this helps.

  18. nancy @ princetoncryo
    October 25, 2009 at 3:08 am

    This is a great article. We are looking for someone to redesign our website. Do you have some idea about SEO as well? What is an ideal time frame to get recent page ranking?

  19. Computer Video Tutorial
    October 24, 2009 at 9:04 am

    Instead of character "|", you can replace with any word you want.

    • Bruce
      October 24, 2009 at 5:34 pm

      I still cannot get this working. PedroF, Andy or Lisa would you please give us the complete line of code as it should be.

  20. r4 ds
    October 24, 2009 at 8:06 am

    It is really useful for me all the time. I like this information. Thanks for this post.

  21. Lisa
    October 24, 2009 at 6:41 am

    Same here - the Blogger would not save the template with the code changes given.

    The quote symbol has to be changed to "'"

  22. Tom
    October 23, 2009 at 10:14 pm

    Thanks Pedrof. You solved it. One weird thing: The HTML appears to automatically revert to the original code if you reopen the Edit HTML function.

  23. Andy
    October 23, 2009 at 7:40 pm

    Thanks PedroF, that worked

    The correct code should be


  24. PedroF
    October 23, 2009 at 6:34 pm

    I've had the same problem but tried this: in the first line of code

    change the ’ signal to '

    It worked, for now, in my blog...

    Thanks, Dean, for your tip.

    • Dean Sherwin
      October 24, 2009 at 6:01 am

      The code in the screenshot works for the MUO test blog and my novelinthirtydays blog.

      If it doesn't work for anyone - trythe above suggestion.

  25. raiderhost
    October 23, 2009 at 3:48 pm

    a seo secret of blogspot dude ... thankz for sharing.

  26. SEO Pakistan
    October 23, 2009 at 3:21 pm

    The best way to optimize your blog is to do everything you do to optimize your website. Google loves blogs but it only gives importance to those blogs only which has useful content for the readers as Google give importance to users not advertisers.

    • Ryan Dube
      October 24, 2009 at 10:37 am

      This is true, but the method Google uses (well, one of them anyway) to gauge user behavior is largely search engine search trends. This is why Dean's tip is so important - because if you can focus your blog title around high-value search trends/keywords, you can move up in the rankings and receive more traffic. His technique shows you how to use Blogger's tools to "tweak" your title so it's more effective at doing that.

      Nice work Dean!

  27. Steve Allen
    October 23, 2009 at 3:05 pm

    Hi Dean, I had exactly the same result as Andy, even though I checked that it looked identical to your screenshot. I didn't save - I just tried to preview, and the error message came up same as Andy's. Any suggestions?

  28. Andy
    October 23, 2009 at 2:56 pm

    After clicking save template I get the following error message... Your template could not be parsed as it is not well-formed. Please make sure all XML elements are closed properly.
    XML error message: Open quote is expected for attribute "{1}" associated with an element type "cond".
    Do you have any suggestions?

  29. Andy
    October 23, 2009 at 2:47 pm
  30. Andy
    October 23, 2009 at 2:45 pm

    Also, in your screenshot my template does not have the line under the statment.

    It's not on any of my blogs.

    • Dean Sherwin
      October 24, 2009 at 5:58 am

      The code under the code you paste in will be different depending on your template.

      The MUO Test blog uses a template from a third party

  31. Dean Sherwin
    October 23, 2009 at 2:41 pm

    Hey guys,
    All coders and web developers out there feel your pain. Your problem lies in the text.

    First, make sure it looks like it does in the screenshot. Chances are you have some unclosed tags or have left in huge gaps between the lines. This causes blogger to recognize the error in the HTML and it refuses to save the template.

    Once again, make sure any tag is closed.

    For example a tag should be accompanied by a tag after the code.

    • Andy
      October 23, 2009 at 3:32 pm

      Dean is there an error in your code? Should the line be change to ? Blogger seems to accept the template with this change.

    • Andy
      October 23, 2009 at 3:44 pm

      Dean is there an error in your code? Should the line be change from to /em> ? Blogger seems to accept the template with this change.

    • Andy
      October 23, 2009 at 3:52 pm

      Okay! I am frustrated trying to make the code show up in the message. Let's hope it works this time. Change data:blog.title to data:blog.pageTitle

  32. Andy
    October 23, 2009 at 2:36 pm

    I just tried that but I get this error when saving.

    Your template could not be parsed as it is not well-formed. Please make sure that all XML elements are closed properly.
    XML error message: Open quote is expected for attribute "{1}" associated with an element type "cond".

  33. literanista
    October 23, 2009 at 2:27 pm

    I got an message that said something was wrong with the code

  34. Andy
    October 23, 2009 at 2:44 pm

    Yep, i tried several times to paste this code


    Same problem.

    I'm quite experianced at blogger templates but this has me stumped.

    My blog is here :