Should I use META tags or not?!

  • Snooper
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Post 3+ Months Ago

Hi folks,

I saw many questions as this from my title above... A lot of guys are confused about this thing, which is happen to be indeed simple... I also have read many articles in form of full and detailed description about META tags... I have also wrote many articles about them, so many, that I become a little boring of writing a same thing. Now I start to understand that so many of "those guys" actually doesn't read these articles that we all have wrote about many times. If that is really so, then I fill very sorry about that!

However, I am still in a mood to write something about META tags again...
Somewhere in the previous post on this forum some guy said: "I am in little confusion about using Meta tags because as I know meta tags are devalued and not valuable for search engines as earlier and do not help to get higher ranking on search engines or Page rank so still we should use meta tags or now we should leave it."
Hmm... Sometimes I really don't know how to start answer on questions like this one. Those guys are heard somewhere about META tags, so it's got something to do with search engines... They think if they insert some META tags in the code of the
website, it will jump in the sky immediately... It will have at least 10 - Page Rank. They don't understand how actually it works?!

The true is that it isn't some mystical and unexplainable process which search engine does crawling the websites. Its really simple thing they do. They actually read the "text" in form of HTML code, which is one of the languages they understand. When they start to read your page / HTML document, they start from the top of the code. Its like you send a letter to your friend, he'll read it from the top to down. Exactly the same thing does search engine when reads an HTML document. So, you need to know how it should looks like!

HTML document is assembled of 3 main parts:

on the top of the document goes HTML version information,
then comes declarative header section which is defined by the <HEAD> </HEAD> tags,
and third is body section, where comes content of the page. Body section is defined by the <BODY> </BODY> tags.



Here begins your HTML document...


Here comes main title of the page,
and META Tags...



Here comes content of the page...


Here ends your HTML document...

Now, you are familiar with structure of the HTML document, and you can imagine how does it looks like for search engine to read one. All of these 3 parts are important for an HTML document to be present and correctly written, and every search engine will value this in way of search engine optimization. So you are collecting first SEO points...

As I mentioned earlier, HEAD section of the HTML document is most descriptive part, and should contain more information as much as possible... Besides the TITLE Tag, META Tags are exactly the best tools to provide these information to the search engines. Weather it is a description of the website which appears along with the search results, or it is assemblage of the keywords which makes connection between search request and search results, that will be provided to the ultimate user. A lot of other important information could be provided to the search engines, and the META Tags are just fastest and simplest way to do that!

So, for all the guys who are asking, are the META Tags important to search engine, the answer is: YES, THEY ARE VERY IMPORTANT, but don't think if you do this couple of things you are deserved high Page Rank already. You are just knocking at the right door, and if you continue doing this way you will succeed. After a while, when you add a lot of useful and interesting content (which is completely different story) your website will getting higher Page Rank...
This is the regular way of making good, search engine optimized website, that will eventually, little by little become popular and will get precious inbound links. After all, without inbound links, a lot of inbound links no really HIGH PAGE RANK.

Ok, I'd like to come back again to the META tags. All this said above is only a theory, let's take a look how its looks like in practice:

Most common META tags

Description META tag is used to display a short description, about your website , below the title shown on the top of search result. If you check out Google home page with some search results on it, you will see that's only 2 lines of description shown below the title of the result. It's usually about 15-20 words, or about 160 characters including spaces between them.So, make sure that is clearly described whole website in first 8-10 words of Description tag. From my opinion, that's what ordinary surfer usually reads.
Sample: <META NAME="description" CONTENT="Put your description here.">

Keyword META tag is used by SE robots in order to establish sensible connection between search request and search result. It means basically, if Mike type into Google search bar a simple word "dinner" as a search request, and John, on the other side, has a website which tells, where can you have a good dinner in the town, by putting a word "dinner" in the Keyword Meta tag, SE robot will find John's website and provide it to Mike as a search results. That's why is very important that keywords, which are inside Keyword Meta tag, must be highly relevant with the content of your page. Another important thing si density of the keywords used in the page which should be between 4-8 % of total text in the page. Overuse of keywords, most SE robots defines as keyword forcing, which is one of the common SEO mistakes.
Sample: <META NAME="keywords" CONTENT="keyword1, keyword2, keyword3...">

Robots META tag is used to instruct SE robots to crawl your website, or not , in order to include or exclude pages or files which you don't like to be crawled. It is a bit confusing how to use this Meta tag. No harm if you don't use it at all, because SE robots are set to follow and index by default, but if you want to do inversely, nofollow and noindex, they won't index entire website, which isn't good. So, you need to combine it with a Robots.txt file which instructs SE robots more specifically, by it's Disallow* function, what files, pages or entire folders you want to leave uncrowned and unindexed. Unfortunately, many of SE robots doesn't actually read Robots.txt file. My recommendation on this topic will be, if you don't want your website to be crawled, use nofollow and noindex option, otherwise, use the option shown below in combination with Robots.txt file uploaded in you root folder along with index page of your website.
Sample: <META NAME="robots" CONTENT="INDEX,FOLLOW"> (SE robots default option)

Seems SE robots might not read your Robots.txt file, it would be wise if you specify these orders directly in Robots META tag. Insert the path to the file in CONTENT of Robots META tag along with commands, like this CONTENT="/folder/images/photo.jpg NOINDEX,NOFOLLOW" or if you want uncrowned one type of file then do like this CONTENT=".rar NOINDEX,NOFOLLOW"
Just be very careful how do you use INDEX, NOINDEX and FOLLOW, NOFOLLOW commands. INDEX means - crawl, and FOLLOW means - follow links forward.

This is only 3 examples of most important META tags, but there's about 8 usually used META tags, and near to hundred of other HTML tags...

>> More about META & HTML tags! <<

  • webmindz24
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Post 3+ Months Ago

yes.. there are too many articles and discussions about this topic.. but you explained here very well.. thanx for writing a good article..
  • erikko
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  • erikko
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Post 3+ Months Ago

i think it depends on the SEO specialist whether they use metas or not, afterall they are the ones who knows the needs of the site to rank and gain traffic
  • mit
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Post 3+ Months Ago

Well, There is no harm using them, specially "META Description tag"; i always recommend it and also used by all major Search engines like Google and Yahoo.

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