References

For the full list of Wiki Guidelines, see Wiki: User Experience Guidelines.


Key principles

  • Keep it short and to the point
  • Choose the words wisely
  • Use title casing
  • Refer to target technology, target platform in the article's title
  • Don't use "(EN-US)" in title for English language (but add en-US tag to the tags list)
 Caution
Keep your article title short, if the title is >230 chars long (including spaces), the article can become inaccessible or cannot be edited anymore.
(Known issue reported, to be rechecked after next Wiki platform upgrade)

 


General

General guidelines for (English-language) wiki article titles:

  • The words you use in your article title are a very important factor in search engine discoverablity.
  • Brevity is key. Search engines key on only a certain number of characters in a title, so shorter titles are better than long ones.
  • Please do not include "(en-US)" in the title for English articles. See Wiki Governance: Whether or Not "(en-US)" Should be Added to the Title of English Articles.
  • Use title casing (such as "How to Configure Software Distribution"). Do not use sentence casing (such as "How to configure software distribution"). The exception is a quote (see below). Do not use words with all letters in uppercase (cfr netiquette principles).
  • It is okay to use lower case in a title when you're referring to an actual message in the UI. In that case, use quotes and the punctuation in the actual message. This can be used to quote a KB article, release note, or error message. For example... SQL Server Troubleshooting: "Reboot your system."
  • Avoid gerund-based titles ("Using," "Understanding," etc.). They can be misleading and ambiguous. If you see a search result with the title "Using MOM", what do you expect to see in the wiki article? Instead of "Adding a Stub Page," call it "Add a Stub Page" or "How to Add a Stub Page".
  • Try to include your technology/product in the title. For example, "How to Troubleshoot" is not helpful. But "How to Troubleshoot SharePoint Server 2010" is much more helpful.
  • For links aggregation or conceptual Wiki articles, use simple noun-based titles. For example, "Software Distribution".
  • For articles that tell how to do something, use "How to..." For example, "How to Configure Software Distribution".
  • Commas--per the Microsoft Style Guidelines, use a comma after each item in a list, including the second-to-last item, such as "How to Design, Create, and Maintain a SQL Server Database". You can also use commas in a quoted error message, when the comma is in the UI message.
  • For articles about the TechNet Wiki start the title with "Wiki:..." For example, "Wiki: Title Guidelines".
  • Likewise, for articles about a specific technology, try to include the technology. For example, "Windows Server Portal" or "Windows Server: How to Add a User Account". Otherwise, if the title is too generic (such as "How to Add a User Account") it won't be clear to the reader what the article is about when it is seen in a list or in search results.
  • For nouns or subjects, just title the topic after the subject, such as "SQL Server 2008 R2". Do not include unnecessary words before or after it, such as "Understanding...", "How to Understand...", "Introduction to...", "About...", "A few tips on...", or "...Overview".
  • If the version of the technology or product is important to the article, use the version number in the title.
  • If the article pertains to multiple products, see if you can exclude the products from the title and include them in the article instead.

See Also


Other Languages