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Use title attribute on h1 on body text

 12:31 am on Nov 7, 2002 (gmt 0)

Does doing this to your keywords on a page help or hinder?

<h1 title="WIDGET">WIDGET</h1>



 1:08 am on Nov 7, 2002 (gmt 0)

Based on the history of the Web and HTML, using an H at the beginning for a sentence that has your keyword phrase being emphasized seems to be helpful. I wouldn't do what you suggested because it is not a natural thing to do. Hence it could be a bad tactic, more manipulative.

For me the watch word is naturalness. Do what is good HTML, good text for your users and what naturally helps search engines know what you are about. It's the same thing that our visitors want to know.


 2:52 am on Nov 7, 2002 (gmt 0)

I've been asking myself this question, "When was the last time you saw an H1 tag web page scoring in the top 10?"

My answer is, "I can't remember."

Anybody else have an opinion on the actual real-world efficacy of h1 tags?


 3:04 am on Nov 7, 2002 (gmt 0)

Hummm, must be something in the library [webmasterworld.com] or in Google's FAQ [webmasterworld.com] about this one.


 3:08 am on Nov 7, 2002 (gmt 0)

I have several pages with H1 headlines in first or second place in competitive categories, but I usually use a condensed font to improve appearances.


 5:14 am on Nov 7, 2002 (gmt 0)

Some of my headlines use H1 tags, and some don't. (I started using them at some point, but most of my older pages' headlines haven't been updated.) I don't think the H1 tags have made much difference in search placement, probably because such tags are likely to be just one of the 100 or so on-page factors that Google supposedly uses to determine relevancy.

I think page titles are a lot more important, but it's still hard to predict what Google will decide is important. I have a photo gallery with scores of pictures from a cruise ship, and the page that comes up #1 in a search on "(Cruise ship name) photos" isn't the gallery's main page--it's a page about the ship's launderette.


 5:18 am on Nov 7, 2002 (gmt 0)

I knew an attorney with oversite authority on a web site once who put all content in <h tags, a few years ago, it did not work back then.


 6:35 am on Nov 7, 2002 (gmt 0)

Did I miss something here? I read this twice, maybe someone will tell me to read it three times.

<h1><h2>,etc are for structure, and therefore important.

<h1 title="WIDGET">WIDGET</h1>

Are you worried about the title, or about what's in between the <Hn> tag? <h1> is supposed to be inside the <body> tag, that's not showing body text at all..So I'm assuming there are some <p>'s after the </h1>

Somehow, some of us have the idea that the bigger the <Hx> tag, the more important it is to a SE. That might have been the case back in the '90's, but we've grown up...This stuff should be used for structure. If you're using an <h1> tag and you think you're spamming, you need to go back and read w3.org again. On the other hand, I might agree with a notion that using <h1></h1> multiple times on a page might look really funny, since the structure shouldn't look like that anyway...implying that you're trying something slightly naughty.

I guess you have to kind of think as a SE might: If there's an <h1> tag, that should add some importance, but if you do it over and over on the page..well, you get the idea.


 6:40 am on Nov 7, 2002 (gmt 0)

Agree heartily with Bobriggs, where on earth did the idea that good markup means spamming come from?

I've had great results by mirroring the titile of a page with an h1, it's good document structure and the SE's seem to like it...



 10:50 am on Nov 7, 2002 (gmt 0)

I have just built a site, where the page title is used in a h1 tag dynamically using asp.

It worked very well with the new index and I agree with Nick_W that it is good document structure.


 10:56 am on Nov 7, 2002 (gmt 0)

Always optimize for the user! Why? The search engine tries to think and act as a user when it ranks the results.

So i would say feel free to use, but if you use don't use it only because you think it's good for your ranking.


 11:51 am on Nov 7, 2002 (gmt 0)

If we're referring to the HTML title attribute, not the page title, there was just a little discussion on it in another context in the HTML forum:


I've always preferred to use <h2> with Arial font because the font size is naturally smaller than Verdana, but was recently corrected by a member saying that using <h1> is the correct way according to current HTML specifications.

It's also acceptable to use CSS for size and formatting, according to specifications, as long as the tags and font sizes are used hierarchically and in proper proportion relative to each other and to the regular page text.

The title attribute gives a descriptive mouseover, and I'd guess it's a great help with usability if done correctly. For those using voice recognition for browsing, title=ladies green widget catalog is a lot more descriptive than "Products" appearing in just a text link with no title attribute.

W3C specs and usability can't be that far off, and some sites try for Bobby compliance, which is even tougher.

[edited by: Marcia at 12:01 pm (utc) on Nov. 7, 2002]


 11:56 am on Nov 7, 2002 (gmt 0)

as long as the tags and font sizes are used hierarchically

I disagree about hierachical font sizes, I often have my h2's bigger than my h1.

Reason? My h1 is bang at the top of the page on the right of the logo so it's clearly the 'page title', the h2 is in the body content is generally more specific and needs to be stand out...

Still, as of yet, there is no defined problem with either approach ;)



 12:04 pm on Nov 7, 2002 (gmt 0)

Same thing here Nick, I've used them in reverse when needed with no problem. But hierarchical is generally the accepted protocol. It's no big thing for average, legitimate webmasters like us, just the standard recommendation - which I don't always follow or remember.

The title attribute, when properly used, is good SEO and good for usability.


 12:21 pm on Nov 7, 2002 (gmt 0)

Pretty much every one of my pages has an H1... From a usability perspective, it's critical that the user see something that identifies the subject/content of the page immediately, and that's the logical candidate for an H1.

I have no idea why you'd want to add a "title" attribute to an H1 tag, though!


 12:32 pm on Nov 7, 2002 (gmt 0)

I agree danny,

I'm unclear on the value with SEO but I see no logical purpose for anything else...


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