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How To Write Attention-Grabbing Headlines That Get Clicked and Boost Traffic — 100% Clickbait-Free

  • 5 min read

Learn how to write amazing titles without annoying your readers.

I see a lot of new writers publishing clickbait articles without knowing it.

My writing coaching students also often have the problem of not knowing exactly what is clickbait and what is not.

So, let me ask you a question, new writer:

What emotions come to your mind when you see headlines similar to these?

  • You Won't Believe What You’re About To Read…
  • The Greatest Opportunity for Crypto Fans
  • Try These 7 Ways To Make Money Fast
  • How I Made $7,000 With One Simple Click
  • The Secret Behind My 1,000,000 Views on YouTube
  • Timothy Junior’s Miracle: The News That Shocked Doctors
  • You Won’t Believe What Happened When She opened This Anniversary Gift

Feels like being tricked with a lemon

An excessive number of such headlines are equivalent to buying a car from a used-car salesperson.

They could sound like a fantastic deal and have great looks. But soon after, we find we were tricked with a lemon. We can’t help but feel angry and betrayed. It has been a waste of time. And we won’t make any purchases there ever.

In the online writing world, I often see readers in the comments stating:

“Your story is clickbait. I’m disappointed. I will unfollow you.”

But what exactly is clickbait?

Here’s a really good definition:

“Clickbait is a sensationalized headline that encourages you to click a link to an article, image, or video. Instead of presenting objective facts, clickbait headlines often appeal to your emotions and curiosity.”

Especially as a new writer, you want to be seen and read to win more followers and earn more money. I totally get that!

Here’s what you can do to arouse curiosity while still not writing clickbait headlines:

1— State Your Position

Statement headlines are effective for contentious subjects.

They instantly and adamantly inform the reader of the writer’s camp.

Readers anticipate a strong opinion and hope that it will be supported by logical, well-researched reasons.

Although a combination of sound research and personal experience can strengthen an article with a strong perspective, personal experience is also a potent technique to convince.

  • No, You Don’t Have To Poo Every Day
  • Actually, High-Fiving Kids is Totally Fine
  • The Conditioned Apathy Towards Black Americans is a Malignant Cancer
  • It’s Ok To Have Your Kids See You Be Sad

2 — Draw the Reader Into an Interesting Narrative

In your headline, include a reference to a compelling story. This will draw the reader in.

When a headline gives off the impression of a compelling narrative, we can’t help but be curious. The power of stories to inspire, motivate, and form deep bonds between individuals as well as between individuals and ideas.

They are more engaging than boring lectures or dry data. They instruct, influence, and inspire.

  • This Mom of 6 Grew A Multimillion Dollar Business
  • What the US Can Learn From the German Work Culture
  • Meet the Woman Who Left Wall Street To Open A Bakery
  • How AI Is Driving the Future of Technology

3— Be Supportive

While some headlines give pleasure or inspiration, others present research.

How-to headlines give readers helpful advice so they can accomplish a task.

It might introduce them to a new topic, assist them in carrying out their current activities in a way that upholds their beliefs, or demonstrate to them how to make a certain aspect of their lives more practical and pleasurable.

  • An Astronomer’s Guide to Stargazing With the Naked Eye
  • How To Make Your Online Shopping Better for the Environment
  • Three-Minute Make-Up for Busy Mums and Speedy Foundation Test

4— Define clearly and summarize

Although it’s natural to want to tease our reader by withholding information, doing so can backfire.

News websites excel at drawing attention to specifics. They are aware that writing vague, generic titles won’t satisfy their reader’s busy, information-hungry needs. They are aware that not everyone has time to click on every headline.

They instead tease with precision.

Contrary to what we believe, specific headlines pique interest by highlighting intriguing details that highlight results, accomplishments, trends, and tales.

  • Fathers Gained Family Time in the Pandemic. Many Don’t Want to Give It Back.
  • The French Bulldog Is the №1 Most Popular Dog Breed in the U.S.
  • Chinese Astronauts Return to Earth After Six-Month Mission
  • Dad Gets Tattoo To Match Son’s Cancer Scar

5— Demonstrate Credibility

Mentioning well-known figures or the fact that discoveries are supported by science in headlines instantly lends your writing credibility in the eyes of your reader.

Viewers anticipate that the article will go into more depth regarding the study's specifics or a reliable source's opinions.

  • Researchers Say Panda Poop Could Help Treat Tons of Diseases
  • How Did Spinosaurs Hunt? Study Revealing Brains Of The Oldest Of These Predators Gives Clues
  • ‘Time Reflections’ Finally Observed by Physicists After Decades of Searching
  • Earth Has a Lot of Different Minerals — But Only a Finite Suppl

Convert Clickbait Into Alluring Headlines

Do you still recall the clickbait headlines from the beginning?

Let’s examine how we may improve one of them to convey more pertinent information, sound more authentic, and be less commercial.

Clickbait:

  • Try These 7 Ways to Make Money Fast

Better write:

  • Just Working Harder Won’t Get You Ahead. Working Smarter Will.
  • How To Get Rich: 7 Tips For Building Wealth
  • How To Make Money on (YouTube/Pinterest/Medium/Instagram/TikTok): 7 Effective Strategies From a 4-Figure Creator

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