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H1 Tag Problem

foxracing_honda_38
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H1 Tag Problem

hey guys!

I'm putting together my first affiliate website using WordPress and decided to run it threw the traffic Travis analyzer only to have it fire back at me saying that each page has to many h1 tags,is this a problem ? I'm no professional when it comes to knowledge on tags by any means or a coder so i wouldn't have a clue how to fix it if i needed to, help would be much appreciated
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jimcoe
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Traffic Travis is right - the "Rule of thumb" is only 1 "h1" header tag per page. "H" tags create text headers. Headers are an important visual element - to break up your blocks of text into easy to scan smaller blocks.

The easiest way to spot header tags is to go into the WordPress editor's "HTML" view, where you can see all the (normally invisible) HTML "tags" which make a web page work. All the tags that look like:

<h1>Some text inside a main header</h1>

...are your h1 tags. You may also have less important <h2>, <h3>, <h4> and so on tags. Just delete both the start "<h1>" and the end tag "</h1> for the h1 headers you don't want, then refresh your page.

If you're afraid of the HTML view (it's an important tool and you should learn a bit about HTML and make use of it), you can stay in the "Visual" editor view and just run your mouse over your bold text to select it, then look at the editor button called "Paragraph" to see if it says "H1" and change that back to "Paragraph" (or another header style) to delete the h1 tags..

Background:
You need to realize that people don't "read" online so much as "scan". When they see large blocks of plain text, they tend to skip over them, since display screens have never been easy to read from.

When they see one of these big, gray blocks of text (and especially if it's "justified", so that extra spaces are inserted between words - making it even harder to read) people unconsciously think something like "Ugh - big ugly block of text coming up that I'm going to have to slog through - think I'll just skip it".

Headers are important to on-page SEO (Search Engine Optimization) because Google (and other search engines?) use them to try to figure out what your page is about - so those tags can give your page an extra boost in search return rankings, when your keywords are in headers. "H1" is the biggest, boldest header and therefore gets the most boost.

I believe that Google considers more than 1 h1 tag to be trying to game their system. Someone correct me if I'm wrong on that. Also, the h1 tag should contain the most important keyword for the page and more than 1 "h1" header would "dilute" the "boost" for that keyword.

Hope this helps...
_jim coe
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foxracing_honda_38
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Thanks that was very insightful, sadly though i went into Html view of each post to see if there was any h1 tags and it is all paragraph and no h1 tags anywhere to be seen? this even makes it more of a headache because i want to understand where I've gone wrong so i can figure it out for next time. Could it have anything to do with the website header image that's automatically on each of your posts interfering ? that contains an h1 tag doesn't it?
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jimcoe
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Yes, you are correct.

The page title you create when you create a new page (or post) is the one and only h1 tag you want. It's made as an h1 automatically - nothing you need to do.

That means in your actual body text, you should use only h2 and lower value tags, like h3, h4, etc..

_jim coe
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foxracing_honda_38
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great! thanks, well I've got a big tick saying well done you've only got one h1 tag , now it tells me "Your page title and H1 tags are the same"...does this matter?
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jimcoe
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That's how it has to be. Your page title is made into an h1 tag. Not a problem. Just be sure your core keyword(s) is in that title - hopefully at the start.
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foxracing_honda_38
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Thanks a lot dude, You've defiantly over delivered with help on this one,much appreciated.
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lukecorden
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I would like to pick up on this thread again if I may.

I am having a lot of trouble with traffic travis telling me I have too many h1 tags across my entire site when I only have 1 h1 tag on each page and that is in the title field.

In the main body of the posts I only utilize h2-h4 tags. I've checked the html text and there are no h1s at all.

my site is www.specialeffectphoto.com

Any advice would be greatly appreciated.

Luke

*** Is it possible that TT is giving page warnings for titles of 'categories' or 'recent posts' that are present on each page in the side bar? If so, does this effect SEO or should I just focus on correcting the SEO warnings in TT?
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jimcoe
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On your first issue: Perhaps you have the same keywords in the H1 tags on more than one page? Ideally, each page is about a different topic (or a different aspect of 1 topic) and the keyword for that page is therefore different from the other H1 keywords.

As to your 2nd question, Perhaps It depends on how your WordPress theme is designed?

You could see if this is covered in Joost De Valk's blog:

http://yoast.com/author/joost/

Hope this helps...
_jim coe
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lukecorden
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Hi Jim

Thanks for the reply and the advice.

Regarding the first issue I am targeting different key words on each page as you suggest I should. I have a feeling the problem lays in either the second issue or in traffic travis as it TT seems to change its search results for no apparent reason.

I will check out Joost's blog though. It looks to be a trove of decent info. In the mean time I have opened a query with TT so I will update this post once the problem is resolved.

Thanks for your input.

LC
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jimcoe
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Excellent. Looking forward to your results...

_jc
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lukecorden
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I opened up a new post on the matter and Cecile came back with the following.

I ran your site through Traffic Travis and I am getting the same error. Looking at your page's source code, it appears that the title of the page/post is tagged as H1. This is normal in mos themes. The titles of the widgets on the sidebar are also tagged as H1. This is as the widget titles are defined by the theme you are using. I suggest you edit or modify these widget titles as these can affect your on-page SEO. There should only be one H1 tag on each page/post.


SO it was as I suspected.

I will change theme and go from there. Hopefully this will help others who stumble across this problem. I am also interested to find out where you can find the header tags for widgets...This will be useful information for the future.

LC
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This topic was started on Jun 15, 2012 and has been closed due to inactivity. If you want to discuss this topic further, please create a new forum topic.