How to use the h1 tag for maximum SEO impact

So you’ve created a website for your business, good for you! Are you having trouble getting found online, despite the amazing content displayed on its pages?

The correct use of the h1 tag is a small part of content marketing that could make or break your SEO success.

What is an h1 tag?

  • The h1 tag indicates the most important heading on a website page or post, it is an HTML tag. HTML stands for Hyper Text Markup Language.  It is the language most websites use to create a webpage.
  • An HTML tag is a snippet of code that tells your web browser how to display the content.
  • HTML has 6 different heading tags h1, h2, h3, h4, h5, h6. The h1 tag is identified as the most important, and the h6 as the least.

If you view the source code on your website an h1 tag will look like this

h1 tag example


Why is the h1 tag so important?

The h1 tag is a major ranking factor for SEO, it matters so much because it helps Google to understand the structure and text on your webpage. It is used to display your most important keywords and is the clickable headline for a search result. It is usually the most visually notable content on the page, and it gives the reader and Google an indication of what the page or article is about.

Here are a few tips on using the h1 tag correctly

Use only 1 h1 tag for each typical page or post on your website
If one h1 tag is good for SEO why not several?
Using one h1 tag means you are giving priority to one keyword, phrase or sentence as opposed to many. Think of it as a page or post headliner. It helps give semantic structure and keeps things simple avoiding keyword stuffing, which could get you penalised.

Use it to describe the topic of your page: answer user intent
Search Engines have advanced to being able to detect what the user wants, user experience (UX) is now a big part of SEO,  ie: how users interact with your page can affect how your page will rank.
The h1 tag is the most important element of your webpage that impacts that interaction. It’s distinct, eye-catching and conveys a promise of the content to come.

Use longtail keywords in the h1 tag
Your h1 tag should contain your most important keywords for that page and if possible the first word or words in the h1 should be the keywords. Long-tail keywords contain three or more words, they are search phrases that are highly relevant to your niche. In comparison to short-tail keywords, which consist of one to two words, long-tail keywords focus on the specific intent or motivation behind a search, therefore narrowing down the competition of what you wish to rank for.

For example, consider the generic keyword ‘Builders’, if you conduct a google search for ‘builders’ hundreds of web pages containing this term would be found, yet it doesn’t go into detail about what the user may be searching for. In contrast, the search terms ‘bathroom renovation specialists’ or ‘best custom home builders Auckland’  are much more specific.

This article covers a small snapshot of good SEO practice. It may be worth doing an audit of your website to see if you can improve your SEO strategy  to reach the audience that matters to you the most.
If you need help improving the content on your website contact me online or call 021951720