What are H1 Tags?
Also known as heading tags, H-tags, h2s, etc...
H-tags are a formatting option for the headings in your copy on your webpages. They help explain to search engines what your webpage content is about and the message priority within that content. It's essentially organizing your website information so Google and users can easily understand what the webpage is about.
There are 6 H-tags (H1, H2, H3, and so on up to 6). H1 tags are the largest heading on the page and the most important. It must explain what your page is about and include one of your keyword phrases. Make sure H1s are used on EVERY page. These are extremely important for ranking. I personally only use H1 to H3 tags. You can use more, but just make sure you have enough information to really even need all 6 tags!
Best practices for heading tags in 2019 are:
1. Only use one H1 tag per page. You can use multiple tags for the rest of them, but never for H1s.
2. Your H1 should be very noticeable on your page, and should stand out among the rest of the copy and headlines.
3. Ensure that you do not skip an H-tag. If you have an H4 tag, then you need to have an H1, H2, and H3 tag as well. I personally only use H1-H3 tags unless there is a ton of information on the page that needs sorting, but feel free to use all the way to H6 as long as it makes sense for your copy.
4. Utilize keywords in the H1 tag, but you do not have to in any other tags. I put them wherever they make sense to ensure it doesn’t look like spam to search engines. When you do use keywords, make sure there is variation among keyword copy. Do not just repeat the same keywords over and over again. Your rankings can hurt if you look like spam!
Here’s an example of how to use H-tags for an SEO Consultant Webpage.
Heading 1: SEO Consultant
Heading 2: Search Engine Optimization Services
Heading 3: SEO Backlinking Services
Heading 3: On-page SEO Marketing
Heading 2: Pricing
Heading 3: Costs for on-page SEO
Heading 3: Costs for off-page SEO
Heading 4: Client Testimonials
Heading 4: Client Portfolio
The headings are in hierarchical order, they have keywords in some headings but not all to avoid looking like spam, and they have variation (SEO Marketing, Search Engine Optimization, Off-page SEO, etc.) The h1 is segmented out by the h2's and so on.
So how do you actually create an H-tag for your headings in your copy?
In most cases, this is VERY easy. If you are using a commercial website builder such as Wix, SquareSpace, Wordpress, etc, you can highlight the heading that you want to tag, select copy settings, and there should be a “header 1” (all the way up to “header 6”) option in the formatting area. If you are working in code, you simply insert <h1> before the first word of the heading, and insert </h1> at the very end of the heading. So it would look like this…
2 ways to tell if your website has H-tags
Install the Chrome plugin “SEOquake”. This is the option I recommend! Once installed, go to the webpage you are looking to analyze; right click, and then select “diagnosis” in the SEOquake menu. A new page will pop up and you will find a section titled “Headings”. All the information will be in that area.
Right click on the webpage you want to analyze and select “View Page Source”. This will take you to the code view of your webpage. Here you press Command+F and type in “<h1” and this will highlight the start of all the H1 tags on that page. You can do this for all H-tags.
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Have questions, or something to add to this segment? Comment below!!