Heading tags, also known as H tags, are used to emphasize text on the page. There are six different heading tags, <h1> to <h6>, and there are specific rules as to when you should use each tag to format your content.
Structuring H tags
When structured properly, headings should describe the structure of content, divided into smaller sections. Make sure to use relevant headings and not mislead your audience.
Different H tags
There are six heading tags in total, <h1> to <h6>. The <h1> tag defines the most important heading and the <h6> tag defines the least important heading.
You are limited to one <h1> tag on each page, so think of that as the most important one. It should be the title of the page or post.
As you write your content, you will use the remaining header tags to further structure your content. If you start a new section, break it up with a <h2> tag. It’s important to note that you can use more than one <h2> tag on a page, but make sure not to make the entire content a header tag. They should only be used to structure and break up content.
For example, the <h1> on this page is the title “What are Best Practices for Structuring H Tags?” and the first <h2> tag is “Structuring H tags.”
- Only use one <h1> tag per page.
- Don’t overuse <h2> tags.
- Make sure your <h1> and <h2> tags are descriptive.
How headings affect SEO
In the past, SEO tags were proven to have a significant impact on rankings, though now it is generally believed that heading tags do not directly affect SEO.
Using heading tags to break up and structure your content will make it more readable, improving the quality of your writing and making it an easier read for your audience. If your audience can easily skim an article for the exact information they are looking for, you are liable to create the kind of engagement and behavior that Google looks for to rank your page as a good result.
While you don’t have to have an exact phrase match in your heading tag, it does help. Having an h tag that contains a part of the phrase will help shed light on what your content is about, which is the whole point after all.
Check your headings
Boston Web Marketing can analyze and fix your headings (among other things) as part of our SEO service.