Wednesday, December 28, 2011

The importance of "Title" tags in SEO

SEO had changed a lot over the years. At one time you could just say what your key words were and the search engines then used those words. A practice called "key word stuffing" eventually led to the search engines analyzing the text on your web site to find out what your actual key words are. Now it is widely accepted that your key words are also rated higher if they appear in links, headings, or titles. I have also been able to determine that Google places higher emphasis on web pages that have more inbound links. They also search PDF files for key words. If you put these together you can add PDF files to your web pages. People will then link to these PDF's and hence these pages will rate higher as they have lots more key words and inbound links. You can also add titles to your web pages and links within your pages and menu's to further add key words to your web site.

Recently I discovered that some web sites were adding "title" to their links. At first I thought this was strange, perhaps a way of stuffing key words into web pages. The standard procedure of looking for keywords in a web page is to strip all of the HTML code, that is everything between the less than and greater than symbols. Then analyze what is left for the key words. However after reading a SEO paper form Bing/Microsoft, Title tags are also analyzed for key words.  I will have to update my Keyword Analyzer Tool (KAT) to add "Found in titles" as a column.

This is an excerpt from Bing WMC FAQ Page 23

Q: How can I apply keywords to linked pages when I use inline linking?
A: Normally the anchor text is your primary description of the linked page. But if you do inline linking within the paragraphs of your body text, you need to maintain the natural, logical flow of the language in the paragraph, which can limit your link text description.As such, you can use the title attribute of the anchor tag to add additional keyword information about the linked page without adversely affecting the readability of the text for the end user. An example might go something like this:

This is an example of < a href="" 
title="keyword or key phrase describing the linked page" >
inline linking < /a > within a paragraph.

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