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Dalai Lama
Jan 302011

Make titles clickable in wordpress.

Quick tip for you and so I remember. If you have a cool theme but on the single posts the title is not clickable then go to this in the single post theme code:

<h2><a href=”<?php the_permalink(); ?>”><?php the_title(); ?></h2>

from this:

<h2><?php the_title(); ?></h2>

Works for single posts and may give an internal link boost. Who knows, we will see.

EDIT: Please read the comments below as some themes require the code to be closed off with a </a> at the end of the above snippet. Or, overlook my stupidity and lack of anything technical and simply add this new improved code line instead:

<h2><a href=”<?php the_permalink(); ?>”><?php the_title(); ?></h2></a>

And if that is not right then I don’t wanna hear about it, OK πŸ˜‰ Man, I was just trying to help you guys out.

I will report back if it makes a difference SEO styley to a site. Do you think it will improve a site? I have a real mixture of blogs where some have a clickable post title which therefore is giving a link from the post to the post. Others just have the title with no link included. Never really thought about it before. If you don’t get the feed then you probably won’t even know this post exists as I am knocking it back to not be the home page post at the moment.

Any experiences would be appreciated.

 Posted by at 3:59 pm

  45 Responses to “Make Titles Clickable In WordPress”

  1. Interesting, i’ll look closer at this when I get on my computer. One thing i’ve done with my sites is i’ve turned my post h2s into h1s so the title holds more importance. Not point making the site title h1 as that’s get ranked with enough backlinks anyway…

    -1 Vote -1 Vote +1Dave Reply:

    @Shaun L,

    Yeah, I just wanted to see if it does make a difference with the extra internal link juiciness. We shall see.

  2. I read a post on some SEO blog or another (I think someone here linked it) that said if you put a link at the end of your post back to the exact same page that you are on, you get a boost from the link.

    I’m afraid I have to call this one out as most likely being horse poop; I would be astonished if G gave you credit for linking to the same page, especially as it detracts from the user experience.

    As an aside, my static sites (ie. all my sites) have had a linked H2 since day #1 and I am still not a millionnaire.

    -1 Vote -1 Vote +1Dave Reply:


    But I bet you are least half a one?

    -1 Vote -1 Vote +1jamesthejust Reply:


    Actually, if you read SEO blogs, the SEO’s are doing it all over the place. I thought it was bogus, too, until I started looking for it. I think Aaron Wall was at SEO Book, not sure – but SEO Design Solutions definitely does, Daniel Tan suggests it in his Rank Mover WSO…

    It’s not as hogwash sounding to me as it first was. Monkey see, monkey do. These guys are making a mint and know more about SEO than I do about my own shoes – so I’ve been doing it.

    From a search engine perspective, you’re telling the bot this page is about X keyword – so if your titles are keyword rich, and other links point to it with X keyword…then it stands to reason.

    For the algo, anyway.

  3. Thanks for the tip Dave, I was doing that to all my wordpress sites (all two of them) before you mentioned it, and was also wandering if it was good for SEO. I have also changed post titles to H1 as soon as I created them. I have had pretty good ranking on static sites with the same setup, so I think if it doesn’t help, it shouldn’t hurt. Looking forward to seeing your results.

    Seems like i check your feed (in my firefox toolbar) too often, you’re preventing me from writing my content and building backlinks! Nah, it’s just my lazy arse…

    -1 Vote -1 Vote +1Dave Reply:


    Sorry for the interruption πŸ™‚ It will be interesting to see what the change does, my feeling is not a lot, but it is always worth testing.

  4. If I’m not mistaken, Big Griz recommended this on his MMO years ago for Blogger blogs.

    -1 Vote -1 Vote +1Dave Reply:


    Who? πŸ˜‰

    -1 Vote -1 Vote +1Griz Reply:

    @Dave, um… moi… πŸ˜‰

    -1 Vote -1 Vote +1Dave Reply:


    Hey Grizz. I was just messing. I owe all of my success to you and that is no word of a lie. I was lost for 6 months until I found your blogger blog. You opened up the whole game for me and showed me what had to be done. I will never be able to thank you enough for that.

    -1 Vote -1 Vote +1Griz Reply:

    @Dave, Dave. I knew you were messin’ and I was just messin’ back. Love your blog – should comment more but don’t want to interfere.

    -1 Vote -1 Vote +1Dave Reply:


    You are welcome any time, I am happy to hear from anyone experienced especially my inspiration for this whole Game. I am still classifying myself as “noobish” Griz, I know what I need to know to earn a good living but should prob get to grips with some deeper aspects of the game. Although on the other hand, if it ain’t broken don’t fix it.

    -1 Vote -1 Vote +1Griz Reply:


    Yes – the most important link on a page.

    -1 Vote -1 Vote +1Dave Reply:


    I had never really taken notice of it on my WordPress blogs until the other day. My head tells me that I now have the most relevant keyword specific backlink I could get, ie. one from my own site from the actual content at the top of the page in a H2, but I still wonder about the effect it will have, we shall see.

    -1 Vote -1 Vote +1Griz Reply:

    @Dave, It will boost the post/page juice like no other link. It is standard on Blogger and G knows that and likes it or it would have been removed long ago. At the very least it has their blessing and won’t hurt you… πŸ˜‰

  5. This is one of those tweaks that should be done no matter what the link juice outcome may be. Theme designers who don’t build this in from the start are, in my view, incompetent.

    More likely, as I have noticed happens with many theme designs … the designer may have wicked cool design and coding techniques, but doesn’t blog, or has only a tiny blog … and so has no concept of how his/her design will actually work for readers when there are thousands of posts.

    Thanks for making the fix so simple, I’ll file this in my useful fixes folder.

    -1 Vote -1 Vote +1Dave Reply:

    @Dave Starr,

    Yeah, I think some themes even have the problem for categories. Mine was only for the single posts once you are actually on them, but I want to see if it does change any stats.

  6. Good thinking Dave!

    I’ve just done a similiar thing by putting a link to the home page on all the single posts. It might be coincidence, but the site I did it too for a test went within days from PR2 to PR3

    πŸ˜‰ – Rhys

    -1 Vote -1 Vote +1Dave Reply:

    @Rhys@Monetize Your Site,

    The real test is did it improve your rankings though? PR is history as far as I am concerned. I have a PR2 here and it means nothing. No search traffic at all for me (insert sad face).

    I have plenty of lower PR sites that rank amazingly well and have crazy authority.

  7. Hmm – I didn’t code this into my theme as I thought it was a rubbish user experience, they see a link and click on it but go no where since they are already there… might revisit this now though if it has SEO benefits…

    -1 Vote -1 Vote +1Dave Reply:


    I don’t think it would detract from the use experience. As the link is the title of the post so there are already where they want to be. I doubt they would even click the post title, but then it is amazing how some people act on the Internet so you could be right Clare.

  8. are you supposed to close off the a href tag with an ? So:

    <a href=””>

    [lets hope the comments box keeps that code intact without messing it up]


    -1 Vote -1 Vote +1Tracey Reply:


    yep as I thought that didn’t work .. let’s try:

    <a href="">

    -1 Vote -1 Vote +1Tracey Reply:


    still didn’t work .. damn it .. πŸ˜‰

    Ok, but my first point still remains, you are supposed to close off the a href tag with an /a I’m pretty sure?

  9. Tracey, it worked for me exactly as shown. Just add in the new bit at the beginning. This theme shows the quotes curly though so make sure you re-do them after you paste the code.

    And yes, it is a real pain not to be able to show code in the comments πŸ˜‰

    -1 Vote -1 Vote +1Clare Reply:

    @Dave, you should need to close off the code with the as Tracey suggests – I wonder if the browser is “fixing” the code.

    Also shouldn’t the post title be a H1 since it’s the most important title on the page? Your blog title should only be a H1 on the homepage.

    -1 Vote -1 Vote +1Dave Reply:


    I dunno, that is all I added and it works fine. The post titles could be a H1 but it depends on how it would then look. Plus I am often too lazy to go through the code to change the size of it, often it can look too big. But still, being the top link and the post title too is a good start.

    -1 Vote -1 Vote +1Rhys@Monetize Your Site Reply:

    And sure it works in the browser, but the ww3 validator throws it up as an error without the closing a/>

    -1 Vote -1 Vote +1Dave Reply:

    @Rhys@Monetize Your Site,

    Yeah, I know you do that for links but I found this code and it worked and is the shortest solution I got. I am definitely not “Mr. Code”, I just muddle through πŸ˜‰

  10. As an update it is now 4 days since I added the line of code to my site and as of today traffic is up 25%!!!!!

    I have some work to do today, I do believe.

    EDIT: And you guys were right. Each theme is different and on some you do need to close off the code with an /a> with< first (damn this lack of being able to put code in the comments) after the end of the snippet in the post above. Don't know why it is not needed on some themes?

    -1 Vote -1 Vote +1Craig Reply:

    @Dave, Does it hurt if you add it on the themes where it’s not needed? It seems like adding </a> into the code at all times would be the safest way.

    Yep, I can write </a>. You may be making shit-loads more money than me, but I got the mad comment skills!

    -1 Vote -1 Vote +1Dave Reply:


    Stop picking on me Guys. OK, add in what Mr Smarty pants says all the time. Better to do it properly rather than copying my lack of coding skills.

    You are asking for trouble again buster with your clever comments with code in.

    -1 Vote -1 Vote +1Craig Reply:

    @Dave, I’m going for record number of comment downvotes. Nice to have an achievable ambition, I feel!

    -1 Vote -1 Vote +1Craig Reply:

    @Craig, On that note, I should point out that HTML tags should be closed in the order in which they’re opened. So the </a> and </h2> in your new example should be t’other way around.

    Probably won’t matter most of the time, but it might mess things up sometimes, so you may as well avoid that possibility!

    -1 Vote -1 Vote +1Dave Reply:


    You are BANNED!

  11. I had to close off the tag on my site otherwise it messed it up.

    Ooooh up 25% – that’s awsome. I haven’t noticed any change yet (but I only did it a day or so ago). Fingers crossed.

    -1 Vote -1 Vote +1Dave Reply:


    Yeah, I did too on a site I just tried. Hey, I never said I was perfect, just muddling through, any type of code makes my head hurt. Even when I nick it from somewhere else πŸ˜‰

  12. Thanks for this great tip about adding clickable title. Will try it out. If I got your idea right, you dont care if the post title is H1 or H2, do you?

    I will add to the discussion about linking the post to itself. Here is the plugin that adds several such links πŸ˜‰
    SEO SearchTerms Plugin

    -1 Vote -1 Vote +1Dave Reply:


    No probs. Why not try changing the title and see what happens. Oh, and let me know too πŸ˜‰

  13. Hi Dave,

    I was messing around with this and there is one small question that I would like some opinions on it:

    I try to post real titles on my blogs/sites like “How to buy the best steel grilling smokers” instead of just my keyword “Steel grilling smokers” for example. This looks better on the website and less spammy.

    BUT, the downfall is that the anchor text now is far bigger than just the keyword. What do you reckon? Better continue to write good titles and leaving it all as anchor text in the title or creating title with keywords only?

    I believe that the former is the best option to go for so your website does not look so spammy, but would love to hear your comments on the matter πŸ˜‰

    see ya

    -1 Vote -1 Vote +1Dave Reply:


    I would always try to write titles just with my keywords but it depends on the site. If you get real followers then you may need to compromise. If it is just search traffic then why not just use your keywords?

    But if you want the longer titles then use your keywords first “Steel grilling smokers: How to buy the best”. Still looks nice and dignified but you get your Kw’s in first. Or Just use the keywords as the title then at the beginning of the post bold β€œHow to buy the best steel grilling smokers”, you could even make it a H2 so it looks a lot like a double title to the reader.

    -1 Vote -1 Vote +1Bruno Reply:


    gotcha .. thanks for the advice πŸ˜‰

  14. how do you make the post title a h1 tag

    -1 Vote -1 Vote +1Dave Reply:


    Um, change h2 to h1!!!!!!!!!

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