13 May 2013 | Team Tamar

The Importance of Meta Data for SEO

Here at Tamar, we like to ensure that the work we do with our clients is always focused on the end-game of getting results. With SEO in particular there are a wealth of different tactics you can use – with a variety of different results, some short-term and some long.

Whilst certain SEO tactics can drift in and out of favour with the seasons, there are some things which refuse to die – often despite their seeming simplicity or out-of-date nature. One of the best examples of this is Metadata – the search engine-targeting code you add to the head of your HTML pages, describing what the page is about.

Whilst most of the tennets of metadata seem like common sense, we wanted to outline some of the less well-known facets of metadata for you, to help you sort the wheat from the chaff.Metadata

Keywords and Mapping

Keyword research is critical for websites to gain the most exposure in the right places. Choosing the right keyword however, depends on a mixture of common sense and research, figuring out how highly those keywords are ranked. In order to implement metadata correctly on your site, the keywords you choose will need to be mapped to the relevant URLs (top tip: do your keyword research using Google’s Keyword Tool).

Using the best-matched keywords that are relevant to the page will ultimately drive more traffic to your website – that much is fairly common sense. However, if the competition is high for that keyword, then it will take longer for a page to be seen on the SERPS. Optimising various pages on your website with separate keywords boosts the rankings of the pages on your website and increases your chances of “winning” at SEO.

Duplicate Meta Data Can Be Dangerous

Being penalized is something we all want to avoid from Google – that goes without saying. Many websites fall under the trap of overusing the same anchor text and implementing high ranking keywords in and out of context – they just the throw in words randomly and hope for the best. Ultimately this will be picked up by Google, resulting in the possibility of a penalty.

Having *some* duplicate metadata is ok if you’ve worded it differently or if it uses a very similar description with separate keywords so that the overall metadata does not read so “copy and paste”. Through this practice, you will not have to worry about Google picking up a bad trend from your website – it’s not the best solution, but if it’s the only one you have then it could make life a little easier.

With Google scrutinizing websites by penalizing them for the use of poor link building – focus has to be considered when implementing new metadata. Metadata works the same way for Google as content. For example, if you overuse the same metadata and excessively use the same keywords which Google know rank well, this could go down as a red light in the Google “office” and earn you a black mark against your name.

Metadata works in the same way as content when it comes to the implementation process. Here at Tamar, we put a low-but-important focus on metadata – it’s not going to be the factor which rockets you up the rankings, BUT it can make the difference between two or three ranking positions, so it’s not wise to ignore it.

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Team Tamar