I go in this order:
I don't think the order matters a lot, but I always put my important keywords stuff as close to the top of the HTML as I can. It can't hurt.
By the way, for your ROBOTS tag, use content="INDEX,FOLLOW" if you want the search engines both to index that page and follow the links on it.
NOINDEX and NOFOLLOW have the other meanings you might want to use at some time.
If you are using frontpage to write your pages it defaults your title to below the other meta's (does any one know if this is the case with other wysiwyg authoring tools ?)
I've heard it said this can drop your ratings in certain engines. to correct you have to manually edit in HTML mode.
If you dont add meta,s for "robots" and "re-visit after" do all engines default to a set pattern?
I don't know one search engine that uses the re-visit tags. I agree with the robots tag. I feel that it is a very important one.
spiky I've always found hard coded HTML easier than using software, but often use Dreamweaver 2 for layout, then clean up the code (like redundant font tags)in an html or text editor. When I use it, I open the page in a plain text or html editor and always put in the meta tags by hand.
I only use index,follow, noindex,nofollow, or in some cases index,nofollow - have never felt comfortable with ALL. Just personal preference, I think the specifics are clearer.
>do all engines default to a set pattern?
I am reasonably certain and always assume that index,follow is the default of there is no robots meta tag. (Someone please correct me if I'm wrong.)
Info re robots tag:
I have been told that your important keywords should be higher up on the page and the keyword meta tag is pretty much useless these days. My question is, does it matter what order the Title, Description, & keyword meta tags are in?
I run the same order as tedster listed but in my experience I don't think it matters much. Metas (title, desc, kw) are less useful than they used to be. I've seen many pages in top 10 without any metas at all.
So does the rest just clutter up robot listings, or is it of any relevance. I'm thinking of meta's like "content" "generator""ProgID""rating""resourcetype"
If this is manually "cleaned up" after a robot has visited, could it alter the rating??
I really don't think order matters any more. I've mixed them up quite a bit lately and I don't see a difference. There used to be some "hints" that putting meta's first did make some difference, but I don't think that is the case anymore.
I think it is more important not to introduce many non-standard tags into the header. Lastly, if there is anything in the header that id's the page creation software, delete it at all costs. Don't give the se's any clue what-so-ever on what created the page. As we've seen in the last year, se's are getting fickle and picky about what they will accept. Don't give them any excuses (like an ms-frontpage) tag to bury you.
>(like an ms-frontpage) tag to bury you.
I completely agree with Brett here. I as a standard I delete all references (Yes I use FP. However I do try to clean code in notepad as much as possible. I even have a "clean" template page that I use and just add to it in notepad.)
I called tech. support @ MS a few weeks ago on a site map/T.O.C. question. When the tech. viewed my page he sounded like he was having a VERY difficult time trying to understand why I would ever concieve of removing those "standard" FP METAs. It was all I could do not to laugh. He started siting all sorts of reasons why this was a bad idea, LOL.
If meta tags are becoming less important can anyone suggest a standard number of characters to use in each meta or is that a bad idea ?
I have dropped the Keywords Meta on some of my pages. I don't know if it has made a difference, but I do have some well ranked pages.
If you want to eliminate the FP meta tags there is a free COM add-in [url=www.jimcoaddins.com]here[/url] that will help. (I have no affiliation with this company)
I run the top 5-8 keywords in tags. I limit my description to 80 chars or less (just for universal compliance).
>eliminate the FP meta tags there is a free COM add-in
Or you could just switch to HTML view and delete them. Allthough it looks like he has some nice add-ins.
> Or you could just switch to HTML view and delete them.
Unfortunately that does not work with FP. Even if you delete the FP tags in HTML they have a nasty habit of returning. That's why you need the COM addin.
>Unfortunately that does not work with FP
Actually and I am sorry to point this out FP 2000 does. View my URL in my profile. This site was done with FP. I do use notepad but not for deleting METAs. I am unsure of the nature/behavior of FP 98 as it has been a while.
> FP 2000 does
You might want to tell that to Microsoft. They posted a VBA fix for this particular issue in their KB [url=support.microsoft.com/support/kb/articles/Q241/7/30.ASP]#Q241730[/url] specifically for FP2000. Not to drag this out, but it depends on the version of FP2K as to whether it will be as nice as yours and leave your changes alone. Otherwise there would be no reason for all these VBA and COM add-in "solutions" out there.
I have read that the order of the meta tags is the following:
does any of you use the meta tag "content"? Is it relevant for SEO, and does it make a difference?
akocsis - Welcome to WebmasterWorld!
There is no defined standard for meta tags. Although most SEs recognize the ones you listed you are free to define your own. See [w3.org...] for more details.
That said, your question is about a "content" meta. I've used a similar tag with some success on some SEs. Perhaps this is because some SEs recognize the tag, perhaps it's simply because it's another place to include keywords that's very high up (prominent) on the page.