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Search Engine Tactics
4. Meta Tags
Meta Tags are the most basic for manipulating the search engines. Some search engines will use these Meta Tags to index web content and give this more weight than the actual content of the page.
For instance, if the first line of text in your page says "John's Hot Rod Page" and the "description" Meta Tag says "Jane's Cooking Page", some search engines will think it's a cooking page and not a hot-rod page.
There are two main Meta Tags recognized by the search engines: "description" and "keywords". These tags need to be placed in the "head" section of your html document. That is they need to reside between <head> and </head>. If you don't understand HTML, don't be scared off by this. Just cut and paste these lines of code between <head> and </head> and you'll be OK.
The tags should look like this:
content="Description of your document goes here.">
It's that simple. Remember, some engines will look for agreement between the "description", "keyword", "title" and body text. So, try to use the same keywords in each field. That is, if your keyword list contains: "plumbers plumbing pipes tools", you need to make sure that you not only include those keywords in the "keywords" meta tag, but also the description, title and body text.
Remember though, every search engine is differnt. Some search engines will use only the first line of body text. That is, the text that comes right after the <body> tag in an html document.
Others still will use a combination of this and weight your page on consistency. That is, if the same content is in your title, first body text lines, "description" and "keywords" then your page will be given more weight in a search.
Remember, this rule only applies to certain search engines. Every one is different.
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Be sure to check out the Search Engine Tactics forum at the Internet Marketing Library! You can find the latest tips and tricks there.
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