3 Basic HTML tags

In order to make a useful webpage, there are a few key tags that are needed.

<!DOCTYPE html>

The <!DOCTYPE html> tag is the very first tag on a webpage.

It essentially introduces the page as being a webpage.


The <head> tag introduces the first section of the page.

This is where information about the page, that won’t be displayed on the page, is contained.

It’s important to know about the <head> as this is where some of the crucial tags for SEO need to be housed.


The body tag contains the information on the page that your visitors will see.

Here is where your copy, images, and videos will go.

The body will also house some of the other HTML tags we’ll talk about later.

Common Tags for SEO & the Attributes Used in Them


The <meta> tag sits within the <head> of the page.

It can contain attributes that describe information about the webpage that won’t actually be seen in the content of the page.

This meta tag is often called “metadata” because of the attributes that are used with it that control things like the “meta description” and the no-longer-used “meta keywords.”

Name Attribute

The name attribute is used with the <meta> tag.

It is essentially a way of specifying to any bots which may visit the page if the following information applies to them or not.

For example, including <meta name=”robots” content=”noindex” /> means that all bots should take notice of the “noindex” directive.

You will often hear this called the “meta robots tag.”

If the following were used <meta name=”googlebot” content=”noindex” /> only Google’s bot would need to take notice of the “noindex” directive.

This is a good way of giving commands to some search bots that are not needed for all.

Noindex Attribute

The “noindex” attribute is one commonly used in SEO.

You will often hear it being called the “noindex tag” but more accurately it is an attribute of the <meta> tag.

It’s formulated:

<meta name=”robots” content=”noindex” />

This piece of code allows publishers to determine what content can be included in a search engine’s index.

By adding the “noindex” attribute, you are essentially telling a search engine it may not use this page within its index.

For example, this is useful if there is sensitive content you want to not be available from an organic search.

For instance, if you have areas on your site that should only be accessible to paid members, allowing this content into the search indices could make it accessible without logging in.

The “noindex” directive needs to be read to be followed. That is, the search bots need to be able to access the page to read the HTML code that contains the directive.

As such, be careful not to block the robots from accessing the page in the robots.txt.

Description Attribute

The description attribute, better known as the “meta description,” is used with the <meta> tag.

The content of this tag is used in the SERPs, underneath the content of the <title> tag.

Example of meta description attribute in the SERPs

It allows publishers to summarise the content on the page in a way that will help searchers determine if the page meets their needs.

This does not affect the rankings of a page but can help encourage clicks through to the page from the SERPs.

It is important to realize that in many instances Google will ignore the content of the description attribute in favor of using its own description in the SERPs.


The title tag is one you’ll be familiar with if you’ve been around SEO any length of time.

Also known colloquially as the “meta title”, it’s the tag you use to define the title of the page. It sits within the <head> of the site.

As such, it is not visible to users when on the webpage. However, it appears in the browser bar, in the SERPs, and allows you to signify the relevance of a page to a searcher’s query – both to the search bots and users.

It is an important element in SEO.

<h1> to <h6>

The headings tags are used to indicate which parts of HTML content should be styled as headings.

The tags sit within the <body> of the page and therefore the text is visible to users viewing the page’s content.

The heading tags should be used to help structure the page.

When creating a website developers will ensure styles are associated with each type of heading tag.

This means the words wrapped in a <h1> tag should look different from the words wrapped in a <h2> tag.

This helps users to determine when a section of text is part of the section that went before it, like titles and subtitles.

The heading tags also help the search bots to determine the structure of the content on a page.


Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *