What are heading tags, and why do they matter to my marketing and SEO?

In my experience the rules around use of H tags is always shifting. Here are the current “rules” (according to Google) as I understand them:

  • You determine the priority of your own content. There is no hard-and-fast rule around which piece of content is the most important to you.
  • Visual styling is important. Apparently you can lose ranking or be demoted for using high-ranking H-tags (h1, h2) but making them small in font or a low-contrast color.
  • They only do so much. They’re not the be-all-end-all of your ranking content. They’re one small factor. Make the choice that best represents your product, not to game SEO.
  • H4’s and beyond do little to help Google make sense of your content. Use more semantic containers (header, article, section) to help organize content.
  • Other things factor into SEO like multimedia, meta tags, etc. Optimizing those in tandem with well-written heading tags will go a long way.

In short: above all content matters. Make sure content is original and readable by Google. Make decisions that help your customers first, and Google second. Often you will find that what’s best for your customer’s UI/UX and conversion path lines up nicely with what Google wants. It is their goal to use compliance to make the web easier to search and use, after all!

 

Here’s what a basic heading structure could look like:

 

  • H1 Product Name
  • H2 Product Short Description / Product name above the description (I’ve seen this done on large eCommerce sites and do not know if this is proper)
  • H3 Product Long Description / Product Specifications / Reviews
  • H4 Product Price

 

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