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SEO 101 (pt 3): Heading Tags

Basic SEO | 26 Nov 2010

Heading tags are an important way to improve your chances of ranking well in the search engines. Granted, like anything else, they certainly don’t guarantee you any sort of top placement, but rather they are another element which contributes. Heading tags have long been overlooked by web designers and continue to be ignored. In most cases they are well aware of them, but for appearance sake decide they are better off without them. Big Mistake.

As you know by now, heading tags, like meta tags, are used to communicate to crawlers, spiders, robots or whatever you want to call them. Search engines create databases with this information to serve those searching for it. The H1 tag is the top level heading of your page and should explain why the visitor is here and what to expect. Pretty straight forward, but what you may not have known…

Some tips

Use multiple fonts when coding you H1 tag. The reason for multiple fonts is that in order to display a font, the computer accessing the page must have the specified font installed. If the computer does not have the first specified font, it will move on to the next. We suggest you use Verdana, Times New Roman and Arial as they are the most widely installed fonts.

As previously noted, many choose to ignore H1 tags for aesthetics. Although I am obligated to recommend your H1 tags that are relevant to what you page is about, and even better a keyword match to your meta tags, URL and content, it isn’t necessary. Search engines no longer look at the relevancy of your H1 tag, but rather if it exists or not. We have conducted 100s of tests, and it is clear, as long as the tag is no absent, you are free to write what you want in them, and it will not affect you ranking for better or for worse. A little online marketing secret : )

If aesthetics continue to be a problem, try using Cascading Style Sheets (CSS). Using CSS, you are able to tell the browser to display the H1 tag and other tags on your page in any way you like. This way you can improve ranking and avoid the ugly appearance so often associated with H1 tags.

NOTE: Heading tags represent only a small portion of search engine optimization. There is a reason you wouldn’t perform a root canal on yourself…In order to achieve the best search engine optimization result, be sure that you have the right professional doing the job. Contact us for a Free website analysis and consultation.

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