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Which tags to keep or toss

     
9:57 am on Jan 26, 2017 (gmt 0)

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I've accumulated quite a list of <meta> tags on my site... most of which I don't know where I picked them up, or why. Probably some SEO article recommended them in 2009 or something, and I just added it cause, why not? LOL

So, based on modern SEO, which of these should I keep, and which should I toss?

// identical to <title> tag
<meta name="title" content="...">

// all 3 of these are identical on my sites
<meta name="subject" content="...">
<meta name="description" content="...">
<meta name="abstract" content="...">

// list of keywords, although I really don't know if it's more relevant than the actual words on the page
<meta name="keywords" content="...">

// I think these are still relevant, but I'm not 100% about "language" or "distribution"
<meta charset="UTF-8">
<meta name="language" content="English">
<meta name="distribution" content="Global">
<meta name="robots" content="All">

// eliminates duplicate listings, like index.php?lastupdate=20170125, so this should be good
<link rel="canonical" href="...">

// used for social media sharing, so this should be good
<meta property="og:title" content="...">
<meta property="og:description" content="...">
<meta property="og:image" content="...">
<meta property="og:url" content="...">

// mobile, so this should be good
<meta name="viewport" content="width=device-width, initial-scale=1.0">

// absolutely no idea what this is
<link rel="P3Pv1" href="/w3c/p3p.xml">
10:47 am on Jan 26, 2017 (gmt 0)

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<meta name="title" content="...">

unnecessary

// all 3 of these are identical on my sites
<meta name="subject" content="...">
<meta name="description" content="...">
<meta name="abstract" content="...">

you want a good description but the others are unnecessary unless you have an application that uses the subject and abstract meta tags.
in addition, these tags may not pass a conformance check.
4.2 Document metadata HTML5:
https://www.w3.org/TR/html5/document-metadata.html#standard-metadata-names
MetaExtensions - WHATWG Wiki:
https://wiki.whatwg.org/wiki/MetaExtensions [wiki.whatwg.org]

<meta name="keywords" content="...">

only if it's helpful for you.

<meta name="distribution" content="Global">

probably nonconforming and should be the default.

<meta name="robots" content="All">

robots all is the default and is superfluous.
unless you are specifying the meta robots for noindex/nofollow/nosnippet/noetc...

Robots meta tag and X-Robots-Tag HTTP header specifications:
https://developers.google.com/webmasters/control-crawl-index/docs/robots_meta_tag [developers.google.com]

<meta charset="UTF-8">

move this before the title as discussed in this thread - Meta charset:
https://www.webmasterworld.com/html/4832627.htm [webmasterworld.com]


<meta name="language" content="English">

not sure this does anything according to any specification.
HTTP headers, meta elements and language information:
https://www.w3.org/International/questions/qa-http-and-lang [w3.org]
Declaring language in HTML:
https://www.w3.org/International/questions/qa-html-language-declarations [w3.org]


// absolutely no idea what this is
<link rel="P3Pv1" href="/w3c/p3p.xml">

the location of the relevant P3P policy reference file:
https://www.w3.org/TR/P3P11/#syntax_link
9:34 am on Jan 27, 2017 (gmt 0)

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Thanks for all of the info!

"Keywords" is the big question mark that's left for me. Other than my homepage, all of my other pages are dynamic (message boards, classifieds, etc), so it's not an easy job to determine what the actual keywords are for the page. General keywords for the site, sure, but not for each individual page.

I'm looking at classes and scripts that (sorta kinda) pull out keywords based on the text of the page, but the ones I've found are slow and not exactly perfect.

So now I'm at the point of wondering, does this meta tag really matter? Don't the search engines scan the page and look for keywords that are visible to the user, instead of relying my potentially-stuffed and falsified tag?
9:52 am on Jan 27, 2017 (gmt 0)

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i'm pretty sure most or all of the general search engines have ignored the keywords tag for quite a while.
internal search engines can still use this feature.
i wouldn't waste any time on it unless you already know why you need it.
4:15 pm on Jan 27, 2017 (gmt 0)

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Even if you use keywords in the meta, they should be unique to each page, not a general boilerplate. In that regard most don't bother because of the redundancy and time involved. It has been quite a while since many of these meta tags have had any real value.
8:25 am on Feb 7, 2017 (gmt 0)

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joined:Feb 7, 2017
posts:1
votes: 0


You must have below tags.

<title></title>
<meta name="description" content="" />

No need to insert meta keyword tag.