Which Meta Tags are Most Important to the SEO.

Do It YourSelf SEO Study Module #07-10

Which Meta Tags are most important to the SEO.

The following list rate as the most important of meta tags to the SEO and should appear in each HTML document. Note that we include the Html tag <TITLE></TITLE> in this list:

<title>Some Page Title</title>
<meta name="description" content="Some Page Description">
<meta name="keywords" content="Some, Page, keywords, ">
<meta http-equiv="Content-Type" content="text/html; charset=ISO-8859-1">

These special tags are almost exclusively used by web page search software. Those who practice Seo and do understand and use meta tags have long known that these are valid tools for providing various search engines with exact data they seek.

This gives the appearance that the skillful seo is able to influence the results offered by the search engines with some lofty magical skills. It is really not a trick with smoke and mirrors more than it is just that these gentlemen know how to best prepare their web page more efficiently than most by providing the search engines and internet browsers with what they expect to find.

Yet, not everyone agrees. You will still find web pages on the internet that tell you Keywords are unimportant for web page discovery (and always check to see if the person who offers this advice actually follows their own advice, if only I had a penny for each of them that don't).

This datum of omitting keywords might be somewhat true of Bing and Google, but who is to say that these engines do not make some use of your suggested meta tag keywords? And any of the many other search engines that do use the keyword tag may undergo a meteoric rise overnite in pubic opinion and popularity and where will that leave you then?

Yahoo was still fond of the KeyWord meta tag through to 2010. Yahoo's results are now heavily influenced by Bing's search algorithm. We are yet to see if a new meta engine will rise to take Yahoo's former number one place for meta search.

A Pizza Yeast Seo example

Let's expand on the KeyWords tag. This should correctly state the exact common words (and/or phrases) you have used regarding the specific subject matter of your page. If your page discusses pizza dough, your keywords may also include terms such as salt, yeast, improver etc. but you would not include toppings as a keyword unless that page also caters to composing the pizza product. A meta search for pizza + yeast then easily locates your exact page on the subject.

But as we have just noted, search engines may elect to scour your content and create their own keyword list for the page. But will omitting your own keywords still work in Google?

Let's demonstrate this with a google search for pizza yeast seo [AU, UK, US] and you will probably find this page very high in the serp list in any regional google search. We have not used the words or phrase of pizza yeast in our meta tag data (you can check to be sure). The reason is that Google is very efficient with their Keyword collection and we have also used an uncommon grouping of words. Should a quality pizza yeast seo product become a common item for purchase or on sale, we would expect there would be more competition which would mean we would need to further optimize our page to get listed a little higher. Adding those words into the tag might be enough.

And so the focus of this module is the Meta Tag portion of your document. And we have seen that we don't really need to bother about these tags because we can still get a good ranking.


But ask yourself, how did it come to be that you have found this little site that is pitted against the self-proclaimed biggest and brightest seo companies on the planet? It must be because this website looks so very professional by comparison. No? But with all the free website templates at my disposal, i could have taken that path. I just wanted to show you how simple it is for any small and legitimate business to come to life and compete amongst the best no matter how highly paid or how many SEO specialist staff the competition hires.

This particular action falls under the study of Off Page SEO or Off Page Formatting. It is off-page because the optimization has taken place outside of the visitors normal field of view. Except for title, we can not see the effects of our work by looking at the web page.

Off Page formatting with the Meta Tag

Some off page Meta Tag format usages are evident:

The <title>Some Page Title</title> portion is displayed at the top of the user's web browser. This is often also displayed by the search engine as the first line in the SERP link that leads the visitor to your site. Even though this is an html tag, it is a major component of seo.

The <meta name="description" content="Some Page Description"> is often displayed in a search engine's SERP listing. It is a good idea to make this line different from the title and also interesting and relevant to the actual page content for this reason. This is your sell line. Google sometimes prefers to alter your description, but not always, so make sure you include it for thoroughness.

Some off page Meta Tag declarations are not so evident:

<meta name="keywords" content="Some, Page, keywords, "> is used to suggest a list of search terms you consider serps should use to link to this page. You can separate words with a comma, space or both.

Declaring the type of document (text/html) with any preferred language may assist SERP ranking of your page in specific language zones on the planet by using <meta http-equiv="Content-Type" content="text/html; charset=ISO-8859-1"> Do this by defining a Character set. This is a must for those coding in xHtml. charset=ISO-8859-1 is most popular in the USA.

With <meta name="robots" content="index,follow"> you can use one or two of the following in the content quotes: none,noindex,index,nofollow,follow,all. This tag informs the search bot if it should index or follow a page etc.

Assign ownership to your content with <meta name="author" content="Some Author">

And declare the copyright of your content using <meta name="copyright" content="2011 SomeBusiness ">

This is not a complete Meta Tag List by any means, but these are the most common. The most important of which are indicated at the start of this page.

But there is also another tag that is important and these are the Link Rel tags. And to be fully effective, we need to know about these too.

DIY SEO Online Training Course Page index for Module 07


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The use of META Tags in SEO     Subscribe to Seo Course RSS feed

How to Optimize META Tags and an Introduction to the KeyWords Meta Tag
Which Meta Tags are Most Important to the SEO
Which Link Rel Tags are Most Important to the SEO
An Online Meta Tag Analyzer for SEO

Appendix: You may enjoy to further research the following not so common references made in training module #07: