By now, you’ve probably begun to wonder: What’s the deal about with using semantic HTML5? Mainly, it offers a number of key benefits that will positively affect SEO outcomes. Specifically, it facilitates the search engines’ categorization and description of your site to your users, and allows for much faster browsing and navigation of your site.
Additional benefits of semantic HTML5 include the ease with which screen readers are able to interpret the content of your web pages. This gives visually impaired users a more complete experience. Content using semantic HTML5 content can be easily read by all browsers without using a plugin, whereas some browsers require a third-party plugin to access Flash content. Furthermore, mobile devices will soon be able to access video content by converting Flash and similar media to semantic HTML5.
How Semantic HTML5 Boosts SEO Results
Semantic HTML5 uses your content and page tags to express the core message of your site to search engines and viewers. You use your site’s content (words, images and media) to relay a message to your users. Your page tags will help support your site’s structure and tone, while positively affecting your site’s overall appearance and functionality.
The reason that SEO is so crucial is that when done properly, it improves the search engine spiders abilities to crawl, index, categorize and ultimately rank your site. This will mean that it will be found and listed by search engines correctly. Through the use of tags, semantic HTML5 helps give your site some additional structure, which will help spiders categorize your pages properly. This means that people who are searching for your keywords will be much more likely to find your site.
Semantic HTML5 and Page Structure
The structure and organization of your site is a main component in determining how easily the search engines find certain information on your pages. Semantic HTML5 gives you the opportunity to improve your search engine results through the use of tags. The efficiency with which your website is organized also determines page load speeds, which search engines like Google admit to being a factor that helps a site rank better in the search results pages.
Every web page is made up of a title, headings and content that may include text, images, graphics and tables. All of these page components have specified tags. These tags allow your data to be manipulated and controlled to address aesthetic concerns and to make it easier for the search engines to better understand the different elements of a page on your site.
Headings are a very important aspect of page structure. The heading tag is used to set apart the main topics of the site and to help focus your keywords for the search engines. When used properly, they create an easy-to-follow outline structure by highlighting the main points of each page.
A well-built site uses both headings and subheadings to define the topics of your pages. For blog sites, best SEO methods suggest having one h1 heading for each of your post topics. There are no hard and fast rules for heading usage. The main point is that you do use them consistently on every page to describe the main sections and subsections of your site.
Some designers following semantic HTML5 use the site name from the title tag and include it in an h1 heading on the home page. Alternatively, they will use a larger heading to include the site title on the homepage. The important thing to know is that search engines use textual content as well as the words placed inside heading tags to classify the subject of any page. Heading tags are searched more closely for topics. Take advantage of this knowledge by placing your site’s main keyword in the h1 heading of each page, and use some of your secondary keywords throughout the page in smaller subheadings.
Optimizing Images, Graphics and Tables with Semantic HTML5
Images are placed on your pages using the image tag. Images are placed on a page for one of two reasons: as an aesthetic consideration or to serve a specific purpose related to the page’s content. With semantic HTML5, use the alt tag to describe the image textually. This will allow the viewer to follow the site’s flow. The alt tag is not necessary for decorative images.
In some cases, most commonly for aesthetic reasons, a designer will want some text to be included on the page in the form of an image. To retain search engine ranking, this can be done by placing the normal text in the document and then hiding it behind the image using CSS. This practice results in a better user experience for visually impaired visitors who use screen readers. It has an added bonus in that search engines are unable to read text within images. If you decide to try this method, just ensure that your normal text exactly matches the text within the image.
Semantic HTML5 uses a new tag, the canvas tag. This tag is used to contain graphics, images and charts, and requires you to use script to introduce them. Any text that is included within the canvas tag will appear to the user if their device or browser doesn’t support HTML5. This tag is similar to the alt tag.
Tables are commonly utilized within web pages to display different types of data. Using a table heading that includes relevant keywords will improve your tables’ SEO value. Also, be sure to properly section tables with the correct thead, tbody and tfoot tags. This ensures the ideal amount of space between each section and makes your table data much easier to read. For additional SEO punch, make it a habit to include a caption that includes your keywords for each table.
Incorporating the use of semantic HTML5 into your web page creation will make your site more readily accessible to search engines, mobile devices and impaired users with screen readers. It will offer a more satisfying user experience by allowing easier inclusion of media-rich content with noticeably faster download times. Aside from semantic HTML5 allowing the search engines to better determine the topic of your site and its individual pages. It will also facilitate well-organized site structure. These benefits combine to allow you to easily improve your site’s search engine rank and to receive the highly targeted traffic you need.