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How to use Meta Tags to optimize a web page

May 5, 2011

In part one of this Search Engine Optimization article series, we covered the critical steps of content development during the web site design process. If the content of each page is optimized by focusing on one specific keyword that is related to the main theme of the entire site, the page has a better chance of being found and indexed by search engine crawlers. However, it is critical to write a page that is also human friendly. If the site does not have relevant content to the keywords you choose, it will drop in popularity and ultimately become invisible to search engines. Therefore, unique and engaging content that has a value to the reader will also score big with the search engines.

After carefully choosing your keywords, creating the H1 heading, subheadings and alt tags, next is the all-important step of developing Meta Tags. Meta Tags are small text blocks written within the HTML page that describe the contents of the website and the particular page to web crawlers and browsers. The text is not directly visible on the browser page. To see it, you would have to look at the source code of the page and they are usually the first few lines of the page.

Many variations of Meta tags are available for our use. They each describe a different type of information. For instance, the description Meta tag is used to write a one paragraph description about the content of the page. Using the keywords met a tag, you can provide list of keywords that you want the crawler to use to categorize your page. You can use met a tags to issue specific instructions to robots such as when to check back for updated content, or even not to index the page at all. You may want to exclude certain pages from appearing on search engine result pages, such as internal pages intended for staff member.

Remember, if your website does not have met a tags, then it is unlikely to ever have a high listing within any of the major internet search engines ( except Google) and directories. Unfortunately, many website designers and developers overlook this important aspect of website development. It’s important to develop these met a tags correctly in order to gain the benefits. Hiring an expert will pay off, but if you want to try it yourself, you can follow the guidelines below. In this article, I will describe the basic fundamentals of correct Met a Tag building for a webpage:

  • Start with the title tag. Google indexes this important tag and recommends that you have different titles for each page. Title appears on top of browser window as well as the bookmarked text when the visitor bookmarks your page. Title is the text that appears on search engine results page as the heading of the page. Make sure you write compelling title tags to evoke response and get the click. For instance, using our example from article one, if you are making a title tag for gold sandals under $20, you would use the following .The title tag is enclosed between . Notice the forward slash (/) before the < in the second use of the word title. This must be included to close, or signal the end, of the tag.
  • The next Met a tag that is important is the description tag. This would provide a short description about the page. For instance, < Met a title: “description “content=”the description would go here including important keywords/>. Don’t use too many words. Try to keep it fewer than 170 characters.
  • Keyword tags are also very important and contain relevant information about your site. An example would be, < Met a name=”keywords” content=”Gold Sandals, women’s shoes, Los Angeles, California/>. Don’t use too many keywords and include your location if you have a physical store.
  • There are a few other Met a tags like the “robots” tag that tell search engine spiders whether or not to follow the links on the page and if the page should be indexed or not. There are plenty of great articles and how-tos on the web to help you learn more about met a tags.

Even if you don’t know anything about coding HTML pages, you can use Dreamweaver or other tools to add met a tags to your pages. If done correctly, Met a tags in combination with other marketing strategies can help you increase your ranking quickly. Although, people generally only use description and keyword Met a tags, there are many other ones that can be beneficial. It is advisable to hire an expert that can develop and supply different Met a tags because it can become challenging to manage.

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