HTML5 and the Impact on SEO

Written by Alfredo C. on . Posted in Digital, Marketing, Technology



Because HTML5 is now a reality, it offers us new tags that allow us to have a greater impact on SEO and eventually with time, will be increasingly included in search engine rankings, providing the context that you will need to understand what is contained in a web page. These new elements will be used for helping to find interesting content depending on the segment or sector of the page where it is located and furthermore, this index will allow our searches to become more efficient, meaningful, and in theory, more advanced.

With the new elements, such as “header,” “article”, “aside” and “footer,” the segmentation of the page will take on a relevant role and the structure will become more meaningful. Upon using them, we will be allowing the search engine to ignore the sections that do not interest it, or use some others to identify relevant information that should exist in that place, such as the terms of use that regularly are placed in the “footer” of a website, or the logo which is placed as a heading.

The element “article” plays the most fundamental role on a web page. Without good content, a site will have a very low ranking on the search engines; because of this, the best information possible should be placed in this tag, now that it will be in charge of indicating the main content of the page.

With the “section” tag, each section of the page can have its own title, independent of the title of the HTML document. This allows the search engine to have a better comprehension of how the page is segmented and structured.

The “header” element gives the search engines an idea of where to find the site’s name, the logotype that represents the site or company. Here we can also find the “nav” element which will give clues about the architecture of the site, like when the site maps complete themselves during updates.

The “footer” indicates the foot of the page, the area that usually contains information such as licences or rights of the site, privacy policy, statistics and links to the major social networks. Thanks to this, search engines may view legal aspects of quickly and official social networking site profiles.

One of the most common ways of determining the positioning of a site for search engines is to use and analyze the links of a web page. That is to say, the engines take care in studying the “links” to see which sites they need to redirect to and which should be redirected to itself.

With this in mind, the HTML5 developers decided to add various types of links which will allow one to give different values to our links, giving the search engine more context about the links found on the page.

Using attributes such as “rel” that gave values such as “do no follow” indicated to the browser that the link was not fully supported by our site. New types of links are very similar to this kind of practice; in fact, we use the same “rel” attribute.

We can now give new values, such as “auto” or “licence,” to these attributes, which will enable us to better describe each link. They can even can give values such as “prev” or “next” that indicate that these links point to a page on the same site that continues to show the content that is on the page.

Also, it is important to mention the media as “audio” and “video” tags and their increased relationship with search engines. An example of this can be seen in Google showing YouTube videos in your search results.

With this advance in web technology, we have already passed the point where it is insufficient, in spite of dedicating time and resources, to try for only one good SEO position or optimization when the source code has remained almost or completely obsolete. Fortunately, we are no longer living during the times where creating a website Babylonian style (using tables) was very common. Almost immediately developers and web designers began the use of (div) tags and style sheets (css) to improve the performance of the pages. The integration of HTML5 is slowly coming around, even in the sites of big companies, who have the  resources to do this integration with SEO. It seems that it is only a question of time and awareness before we will recognize its importance; that is, to be aware of everything there is to know about the most used search engines and operating systems, and which updated versions are compatible with HTML5.

This post is also available in: Spanish

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Alfredo C.

Born in Havana, Cuba. Bachelor’s degree in Graphic Design and a Master’s degree in Web Design and Development.

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