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SEO Aspect of Coding a List That Contains Sentences
gouri

WebmasterWorld Senior Member 5+ Year Member



 
Msg#: 4622330 posted 7:28 pm on Nov 9, 2013 (gmt 0)

Mods note:
Considering how this discussion has developed, I am moving this thread to HTML forum.


I am posting this in this section instead of the HTML section because this post is not about how to code something, but about what to code something so that it can be better interpreted by Google.

Some lists may contain items and some may contain sentences.

An item list may be coded in the following way:

<ul>
<li>soda</li>
<li>water</li>
</ul>

I am wondering if each item in a list consisting of several sentences instead of just a word should be coded in the same way?

<ul>
<li>Orange widgets are the best. They contain the latest features and are easy to use. The prices are also reasonable.</li>
<li>Blue widgets are also good. They contain some of the latest features and are easy to use. The prices are pretty good.</li>
</ul>

or

with the <p> tag

<ul>
<li><p>Orange widgets are the best. They contain the latest features and are easy to use. The prices are also reasonable.</p></li>
<li><p>Blue widgets are also good. They contain some of the latest features and are easy to use. The prices are pretty good.</p></li>
</ul>

Would search engines interpret the content of a several sentence bullet point in a list better if there is a <p> tag inside an <li> tag? Would the content be able to be interpreted more cohesively?

Is an item list the same as a list that has several sentence bullet points? If they are different, should they be coded differently?

I appreciate your thoughts.

[edited by: aakk9999 at 12:35 pm (utc) on Nov 10, 2013]

 

JD_Toims

WebmasterWorld Senior Member Top Contributors Of The Month



 
Msg#: 4622330 posted 5:17 am on Nov 14, 2013 (gmt 0)

With all this talk about lists I found myself wondering if it's ever appropriate to say
<ul>
<li>only-one-item</li>
</ul>
I think yes, it is; I thought of two situations right away and I'm sure there are others.

Well, in all-reality, you could likely code an entire page/document with <ul><li>s or <ol><li>s depending on whether the order of the <p>s most would use can be changed without changing the overall definition/meaning/applicability of the content contained within the entirety of a one-page document or one-page of a document-section as defined by the staring/ending with <body></body>, so I don't see any reason why you cannot essentially say, "There's one item listed here you can change the order of presentation of, while not changing the 'meaning' of the 'section/document' the item is presented within."

JD_Toims

WebmasterWorld Senior Member Top Contributors Of The Month



 
Msg#: 4622330 posted 5:39 am on Nov 14, 2013 (gmt 0)

Gotta add: Are we really getting this deep into HTML and how to code things because some wanted to know if they should code a <p> inside an <li>? Wow!

I'm impressed and think this is a great discussion, not only by the answers/responses, but by the "clarifications" wanted, because it's really a "deep/technical" topic and to know people actually want to know the answers to some HTML questions and coding techniques, to me at the least, is cool!

So, thanks to everyone who's contributed answered or asked questions -- This is something we don't really "dig into" very often, but being able to "get in to HTML and it's applications" to me is challenging and fun, which generally means "I'm learning and growing" in one way or another, so again, thanks!

lucy24

WebmasterWorld Senior Member lucy24 us a WebmasterWorld Top Contributor of All Time Top Contributors Of The Month



 
Msg#: 4622330 posted 6:55 am on Nov 14, 2013 (gmt 0)

depending on whether the order of the <p>s most would use can be changed without changing the overall definition/meaning/applicability of the content contained within the entirety of a one-page document or one-page of a document-section as defined by the starting/ending with <body></body>

I'm taking this to google translate as soon as I figure out what language it's in.

Concrete situation #1: Page with dynamically generated content where number of list items might change from one day to the next, and it would be silly to change to a different format on the days there's only one:

<p>Today we have tickets available for:</p>
<ul>
<li>Zanzibar</li>
</ul>
<p>Check back tomorrow for more offers!</p>

Concrete Situation #2: Stylistic effect.

<p>Things I like about my significant other:</p>
<ul>
<li>First thing</li>
<li>Second thing</li>
<snip>
<li>Ninety-fifth thing</li>
</ul>
<p>Things I like about my s.o.'s mother:</p>
<ul>
<li>Lives in Tierra del Fuego</li>
</ul>

:: irritably wondering what the keyboard shortcut for [ red ] is, because cat just stepped on it ::

Concrete situation #3:

Whoops! I guess I want an <ol>, not a <ul>.

gouri

WebmasterWorld Senior Member 5+ Year Member



 
Msg#: 4622330 posted 5:01 pm on Nov 14, 2013 (gmt 0)

I just wanted to say how informative I find this thread to be.

I have learned a lot about when a <p> tag should be used, an <li> tag, whether a <p> tag should be inside an <li> tag, how a document should be viewed (thanks to JD_Toim's analogy).

I wanted to mention something that I think might help us to learn even more.

In the source code for the Adsense page, I saw examples of the <p> tag inside the <li> tag. This coding is used when a sentence(s) is written inside the <li> tag.

<ul>
<li><p>Sentence(s) here</p></li>
<li><p>Sentence(s) here</p></li>
</ul>

I also saw examples of when the <p> tag is not inside the <li> tag. With this coding, there are generally a couple of words inside the <li> tag, not a sentence(s).

<ul>
<li>Words here</li>
<li>Words here</li>
</ul>

After seeing both ways of coding, does this make you think that it might be good to use a <p> tag inside an <li> tag when you have a sentence(s) inside the <li> tag?

JD_Toims

WebmasterWorld Senior Member Top Contributors Of The Month



 
Msg#: 4622330 posted 5:46 pm on Nov 14, 2013 (gmt 0)

After seeing both ways of coding, does this make you think that it might be good to use a <p> tag inside an <li> tag when you have a sentence(s) inside the <li> tag?

Google having something coded one way doesn't change the docs or whether you should/need to do it that way -- If you look at the AdSense Terms source, even though they're obviously a numbered list, whomever coded the page used <p> for everything rather than any <li>s -- I doubt anyone would argue we should stop using <li>s because Google has a list on one page of their site coded as <p>s instead.

[edited by: JD_Toims at 5:55 pm (utc) on Nov 14, 2013]

SevenCubed

WebmasterWorld Senior Member



 
Msg#: 4622330 posted 5:55 pm on Nov 14, 2013 (gmt 0)

How widely do your thoughts sprawl?

They actually don't sprawl, they contract. Tsimtsum is the only concise term I can think of using to define it. It's a singular point of contraction so compressed that the torque it generates causes it to become empty and void...yet it contains within itself, everything. The torus resulting from the torque in turn spawns everything, all knowledge. That's what I'm striving for so I can better understand this experience I perceive with my 5 senses. I want to observe myself from the inside out.

With all this talk about lists I found myself wondering if it's ever appropriate to say
<ul>
<li>only-one-item</li>
</ul>

I assume you mean "only-one-item" can be a concise expression of a few words, not necessarily "only-one-word"?

Your "<li>only-one-item</li>" = my "<li>attribute of a thought</li>". If I realize I'm trying to jam more than one "concise attribute of a thought" into a <li> then I know it's better to put it into a <p>

Going right back to the OP though, I can't imagine how this would have any SEO benefits. However it has a potential to make the content easier for the reader, which can have SEO side effects of them sharing it with their friends. But then it is no longer SEO it becomes WSO. Focus on what will make it easier to read for all readers while realizing that there is a very wide range of human brain characteristics that define "make it easier" to understand.

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