SEO H1 Tag Best Practices: How to Optimize H1 for Higher Rankings

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How to Optimize H1
How to Optimize H1

H1 tags

How would you like to know the top SEO H1 tag best practices to rank your pages higher on Google?

If that sounds good, then you’ll want to read every word of this post.

Header tags like the H1 play an important role for both your users and your SEO. And if you’re serious about increasing your website traffic, you can’t afford to optimize your H1 tags correctly.

As you’ll discover below, H1 tags not only make the content on a webpage more organized and easier to read, but they are also a critical SEO element that can affect how your pages rank for targeted keywords in the Google search engine. Search.

So, to ensure you get the most value out of your H1, I’ve put together a list of H1 best practices that you can follow for perfect on-page optimization.

What is the H1 tag in HTML?

The H1 tag is an element defined in HTML. It is written in HTML code as H1. Typically, the HTML tag is the first visible header tag on a web page. An H1 tag in HTML is usually presented in large print as it defines the most important heading.

Why is the tag used in HTML?

In proper HTML header markup, the H1 tag is used to introduce the main topic of the page. The correct hierarchical header layout will have an H1 as a subsection.

Then I will cover the most important H1 SEO best practices that can add more value to your HTML element

How to Optimize H1 SEO tag best practices

1. Include keywords in the tag

The other two factors are the page title (the meta title) and the URL.

To get the maximum SEO benefit from your H1 tag, you should place your main keyword in this HTML element. And if you can add secondary keywords or even a long tail version of the main keyword, that could benefit you too.

Also, place your main keyword as close to the beginning of the H1 tag as possible. The closer the keyword is to the beginning of the H1 HTML element, the more SEO weight it will be given. And never repeat keywords.

Also, always remember that your H1 tag needs to be human-readable; don’t put as many keywords as you can in this HTML element. If you write for your visitors first and then make adjustments to optimize for Google, you can naturally include keywords without sacrificing user experience.

  • H1 SEO tag best practices
  • H1 SEO Best Practices
  • H1 best practices

If you look at the H1 tag on this page (image below), you’ll see that I’ve only used the first keyword variation as an exact match in the HTML element. I didn’t put the other versions because it’s not necessary; each of the words that make up these keyword versions is included in the first variation.

If you’re not sure which keywords to use in your H1 tags, check out my guide on why keyword research matters for SEO. 

2. Know user intent with H1

Search engines like Google are increasingly focused on discovering their users’ intent and providing search results that satisfy that intent.

And just because a web page has a specific keyword in the H1 tag doesn’t mean the content will fulfill the user’s intent.

Suppose you are searching Google for this keyword phrase, “How many keywords per page”. Your intent is to figure out the number of keywords you should optimize a webpage for. Is it 2 keywords, 5 keywords, or more?

you found this H1 tag, “How many keywords should you be crawling by page?”How to Optimize H1

That content doesn’t meet your search intent, does it?

And if you saw that H1 tag, you would probably leave the page and go back to the Google Search Results Page (SERP) to find something more relevant.

Let’s now imagine you clicked through to my site on the SERP and were greeted with this H1 tag: “How many keywords per page for SEO should you target? “

This content meets your search intent. And you would continue to read the page.

So how do you ensure you’re meeting user intent with your H1 tags and not missing out on the opportunity to gain more engaged visitors here?

According to Searchmetrics, whenever you write content, you want to ask questions like:

  • What does the user want when they open my article?
  • What is their intention?

And your H1 tag should satisfy that desire.

Essentially, you want to give the visitor what they came for in the h1 tag. Once a person sees a promising result on the SERPs and clicks on it, the words in the H1 are what confirm or deny that the user is on the right page. So make it a practice to always address the user’s intent with your H1 tag. How to Optimize H1

A simple way to achieve this is to just make your title meta tag and H1 tag the same. This way, there is no confusion for the user. Additionally, this SEO strategy can reduce the chance that Google’s algorithm will rewrite your meta titles when it thinks there is a mismatch in user intent.

So the most effective way to lessen the chance that Google will rewrite your title is to match it with the H1 tag, or at the very least make them similar enough that a rewrite won’t matter much to the user.

3. Keep the H1 between 20 to 70 characters

While there is no technical limitation to the length of a header tag – you can make it as long or short as you like – H1 SEO’s best practice is to keep it between 20 and 70 characters.

And if the H1 is too long, you’re diluting the tag’s power.

As I mentioned in the first H1 SEO tip, the tag is a good place to add secondary keywords. It’s always better to make the H1 longer rather than shorter because you can optimize that title for additional keywords you want the page to rank for.

4. Use only one tag

With the H1 tag being such a powerful HTML element to optimize for SEO, you might think it would be a good idea to use more than H1 on the page. How to Optimize H1

If an H1 is good, then wouldn’t 10 be even better?

This is not the case.

Although the Search Engine Roundtable reported that Google’s John Mueller said it’s okay to use multiple H1s on a page, it’s still bad SEO practice. This is because the presence of more than one H1 tag can dilute the SEO power of a single H1 element.

So your web pages only need to have a properly optimized H1 tag and nothing else if you want maximum SEO ranking power for your keywords.

5. Make your tag stand out

In my best practice #2 H1 above, I emphasized the importance of meeting user intent in the H1 tag. That’s because visitors want to instantly know they’re on the right page and get the exact information they’re looking for.

Along with this concept, it includes making your H1 tags stand out to the reader.

In proper HTML header markup, the H1 tag is used to introduce the main topic of the page, so the H1 should also be the most noticeable visual element on the page.

So best practices for styling your H1 include:

  1. Must be large (30px font size or larger)
  2. Must be bold (font weight from 700 to 900)
  3. Must be noticeable (placed at the top of the content)

By combining good web design and SEO practices with your H1s, you can improve the user experience on your web pages, as well as capitalize on the ranking power of on-page search engine optimization. How to Optimize H1

There are about 10 other easy things you can do to increase your traffic, which this linked page covers.

And when you’re done optimizing your H1 tags and other on-page SEO elements, you can visit this page to learn how to check your keyword rankings on Google to track your progress.

How to Optimize H1 tags important for SEO?

H1 tags are important for SEO because having an H1 tag on your pages can help your content rank better in the SERPs, and also because it tells search engines and visitors what the page content is about, and is That’s why the H1 is an important place to put your keywords.

Therefore, you should always include an H1 on the page and optimize it as best as possible for both search engines and website users.

Is it bad to have multiple H1 tags?

It’s not a bad thing to have multiple H1 tags on the page relative to the HTML markup. However, having more than one H1 tag is bad for SEO because having multiple H1 tags on the page will dilute the ranking power of the HTML H1 element.

The main purpose of an H1 tag in HTML markup is to present the page’s main topic. The correct hierarchical header layout will have one as a subsection of H1. That’s why on most web pages you only see one H1 tag followed by several H2 tags.

What should my tag be?

Your H1 tag should be descriptive of the page. You can combine the H1 tag with the page’s title tag, but it’s not necessary. Your H1 should be a good balance between SEO and helping readers understand what the page is about.

Can Title Tag and H1 be the same?

The title tag and H1 can be the same. And in many cases, this is the best SEO practice to follow as long as it satisfies the user’s intent. Also, the title tag and the H1 can also be similar and closely related, but they don’t have to be identical.

According to Google’s recommendations, you’re encouraged to “match your page’s meta title [title tag] and H1” and changing the order slightly isn’t a problem.

For example, the title tag of a blog post on this site about good SEO books to read is: But the H1 tag on the page can easily be:

This strategy would allow me to capture more clicks from search results including the number of books and current year; however, the actual H1 tag does not need to have all these numbers. The number 20 can be omitted without any problems.

Now, here’s another example from the SEO conversation site that uses an exact match between the title tag and the H1 tag.

Both the title tag and the H1 can read:

  • How to Add Keywords to a Website for SEO (20 HTML Points)

Just use what’s best for your content. It could be a slight variation between the title tag and the H1 tag, or an exact match. Both are perfectly suited for improving your search engine optimization.

Summary of Best Practices for H1 SEO Tags

I hope you enjoyed this in-depth guide on my top H1 SEO tag best practices.

As you’ve discovered, there are several tactics that every web page should follow. This includes having your keywords in the HTML H1 element, meeting the user’s intent, keeping the length between 20-70 characters, using only one on the page, and making the tag stand out to the user. How to Optimize H1

If you follow these best practices, you can give search engines like Google a better indication of what your content is about, which can lead to increased keyword rankings. How to Optimize H1

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