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META Tags and other HTML elements influencing your Ranking


META Tags are still important for search engines.

Learn how META Tags should look like.


META tags are still fairly important for your ranking despite the rumors that META tags are dead so you should take them seriously during on-page optimization. There is no Magic in META Tags either.

META Tags can be updated using a simple text editor or specialized software. I personally use a functionality in WEB CEO that allows me to update META Tags very easily.

Just open any HTML file you can find in notepad or other text editor and look in it while you are reading the article.

Let's take a look at the important HTML elements one-by-one.


Title tag

The Title tag looks like this.


<title>Search Engine Optimization - SEM Traffic.com </title>


The Title tag is always placed between the <head> and </head> tags and the title of the page would in this example read "Search Engine Optimization - SEM Traffic.com".

The Title tag is the most important of all the tags for three reasons

  1. The Title tag has a heavy influence on the search engines ranking.
  2. It is the first clickable line that pops up in the search engines result page.
  3. It's visible for the user in the upper title field in each browser window.

The Title tag should include the exact keyword phrase your page is optimized for or a similar keyword phrase. The keyword phrase should be placed early in the Title text.

The Title tag should be between 5 to 12 words. The Title should look interesting and relevant to the viewer. Try to make it thought provoking to draw attention to it.

The Title tag should be specific for each web page so do NOT use the same Title tag for all your pages.


Meta Description tag

The Meta Keywords tag looks like this.


<meta name="Description" content="SEM Traffic delivers superior after sales service and rock bottom prices for Search Engine Optimization. Proven track reckord to achieve top 10 rankings on Google>


The Meta Keywords tag is always placed between the <head> and </head> tags and is invisible during browsing. Most search engines do not use the Meta Description tag to estimate relevancy. I suggest you make the Meta Description tag about 20-30 words long.

The Meta Description tag is sometimes shown as description of the web page in the search engine result page (including Google). The Meta Description tag should therefore look appealing and relevant to the viewer to enhance the chance the viewer finds it interesting enough to click on.

The Meta Description tag should be specific for each web page.


Meta Keywords tag

The Meta Keywords tag looks like this.


<meta name="Keywords" content="auto insurance , home insurance">


The Meta Keywords tag is always placed between the <head> and </head> tags and is invisible except for the search engine.

The Meta Keyword tag has lost its importance for many search engines because it was an easy target for keyword spamming.

The Yahoo family of search engines is still believed to factor in the Meta Keyword tag for relevancy.

The Meta Keyword tag can still be useful however. If a word commonly is misspelled in search engines I sometimes include the misspelled word in the Meta Keyword tag and the correctly spelled word in the body text. In this way I can make sure the search engines index my web page for both the correctly spelled and the misspelled word.

A good example would be that I include the word "weather forcast" in the Meta Keyword tag and the word "weather forecast" in the body text.

The Meta Keyword tag should be specific for each web page.


HTML Headings tag

The H1 to H6 heading tags looks like this.


<h1>Canon Cameras </h1

<h2>Canon 30D/h2

<h3>Canon 30D Lenses</h3>

<h3>Canon 30D Batteries</h3>

<h2>Canon 350D</h2>


The heading tags are placed between the <body> and </body> tags in the HTML file.

The H1 to H6 heading tags are considered somewhat important for on-page search engine optimization. To make it easier to read the text it's good to divide the body text into "chapters" with a heading tag for each "chapter".

Include your keyword phrases in the heading tags with the most important keyword phrase in H1.

Normally I only use the H1-H3 tags in my web pages.

Use CSS style sheets to control the font styles when you use the heading tags.


Link Text

The link text or anchor text as it's often called is very important information when the search engines determines the relevancy of a link. It's especially important for inbound links but also for internal links.

A typical link looks like this.


<a href="http://www.ring-tone-directory.com/">Visible link text</a>


This link looks like this in the browser: Visible link text
and it points to the web page http://www.ring-tone-directory.com/

The anchor text should include a keyword phrase that is relevant to both the linking and the linked page.


Image ALT tags

The purpose with ALT tags is to provide an alternative to the image if the browser can't view the image. Special browsers that talks to blind people use the ALT tags as well.

The ALT tag looks like this.


<img src="http://www.seo-conference-photos/seo-group.jpg" alt="Group photo from the SEO conference " />


It is the text "Group photo from the SEO conference" that is indexed by the search engines.

Search engines can't understand graphics so it substitutes the anchor text with the ALT tag to determine what the link is about. Include your main keyword in the ALT tag but making sure to have a good description about the image should be first priority.

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