Heading Tags and SEO

A lot of people don’t use heading tags, but if you want to improve your position in search results, it’s time to start using them. For those of you who are thinking, “What are heading tags?” They are HTML tags that tell your browser to make the text within the tags larger than the paragraph text. For example, if this book was comprised of HTML, the title of this section could be enclosed in heading tags and the code would appear as follows:

'h3'Search Engine Optimization Heading Tag Importance'/h3'

There are other methods that could be used to make text look like it’s a heading, but those methods won’t help improve your position in search engine results. Use the heading tags in your code whenever each page can be divided into topic sections. Let’s use the search engine optimization plan example again. When you write the content for your page, you have three main topics, “Why Create a Search Engine Optimization Plan,” “How to Create a Search Engine Optimization Plan,” and “Implementing Your Search Engine Optimization Plan.” You would enclose each of these terms within heading tags. It doesn’t really matter what size you choose, but be sure that you use the keyword phrase that you’ve chosen to optimize your web page around in each of the heading tags. Assuming your chosen keyword phrase is “search engine optimization plan,” your HTML code would look something like the following:

'h3'Why Create a Search Engine Optimization Plan'/h3'
'p'Text about topic'/p'

'h3'Developing a Search Engine Optimization Plan'/h3'
'p'Text about topic'/p'

'h3'Implementing a Search Engine Optimization Plan'/h3'
'p'Text about topic'/p'

Most designers don’t like using headings because it’s hard to control how they are going to be displayed and therefore it makes it difficult to design a layout that will appear the same on every browser. By default most browsers will display considerable space after headings. To keep this space a more exact amount and to keep a consistent font size, you can add a couple attributes to each heading tag as shown below:

'h3 style=”margin-bottom: 0px; font-size:14px;”'Heading Goes Here'/h3'

The algorithms that search engines use to choose which web pages will be displayed the highest in the search results, put a lot of significance in the text that is held within the heading tags. Most websites are completely void of heading tags, which is a big mistake if getting a lot of traffic is a main purpose for the website. So, if you want a lot of organic search traffic, always use headings. Always. Always. Always.

Remember to keep the purpose of the website at the forefront of your design decisions. Most people don’t visit a website because they want to see a wonderful design; they visit because they are generally looking for information.