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DreamweaverFAQ.com » Tutorials » Miscellaneous » Introduction To Meta Tags


Q. What are META tags?

A. META tags are special HTML tags that are read and used by web browsers and robots.

Introduction to META Tags

The purpose of METAs

You should place META tags within the <HEAD> of every web page that you write. Besides helping your website get better search engine placement, the use of a copyright META tag in your pages tells those who would like to take and reuse your code or images that you are the legal owner of the information within the pages that they are viewing. The use of a contact address and author META allows those who would like to use your information a way to contact you to ask for your permission. The author and contact address META also provides the site visitor with a way to contact you for web site development which is available on every page you create. Some search engines are relying less on META tags and more on actual page content but using good METAs in your website pages is still very important not to mention being sound HTML coding practice.

Top Ten METAs for Search Engines

Suggested Robot META tags for use on ALL pages, in order of importance:

  1. <META NAME="DESCRIPTION" CONTENT="place the page's description here">
    This is what will be displayed on the search index page so write well and accurately!

  2. <META NAME="KEYWORDS" CONTENT="place PAGE key words here, separated by commas">
    Hint: Do not repeat words and keep the list short and specific to the page.

  3. Choose ONLY ONE of the four Robot METAs below that apply to the page you place it on.

    <META NAME="ROBOTS" CONTENT="INDEX, FOLLOW">
    Function: Robot indexes the page AND follow all links (Default state if no robots meta is specified)

    <META NAME="ROBOTS" CONTENT="NOINDEX, NOFOLLOW">
    Function: Robot does not index the page nor follow links (Good for a links page, shopping cart, etc.)

    <META NAME="ROBOTS" CONTENT="INDEX, NOFOLLOW">
    Function: Robot indexes the page but does NOT follow links

    <META NAME="ROBOTS" CONTENT="NOINDEX, FOLLOW">
    Function: Robot does NOT index the page but follows all links (Good for a transition page)

  4. <META NAME="REVISIT-AFTER" CONTENT="30 days">
    Options: This can be anything you want in days. Be realistic, if your site is rather static, go with 30 days or longer. If you do a weekly calendar of events, 5 days is is a good starting point for that individual page. You don't want to have robots scarfing up your pages every day if they are not changing.

  5. <META NAME="RATING" CONTENT="viewer rating goes here (choose one from options)">
    Options: general, adult, mature, restricted, 14 years, safe for kids

  6. <META NAME="COPYRIGHT" CONTENT="Copyright © 2001 your information here, all rights reserved">

  7. <META NAME="AUTHOR" CONTENT="your name or company name here">
    This and the contact address below provides a way for individuals to contact you.

  8. <META NAME="CONTACT_ADDR"="the contact E-mail or physical address for you or your company"> This and the author tag above provides a way for individuals to contact you.

  9. <META NAME="DISTRIBUTION" CONTENT="Global">
    Options: Local (or a specific geographic area such as New England, Western Europe, or Japan). Use Global unless you want your pages restricted to a certain geographic area. Use Local for intranet (internal company) sites that you do NOT want indexed along with a NOINDEX NOFOLLOW robots META and a robots.txt file restricting robot access to the pages.

  10. <META NAME="RESOURCE-TYPE" CONTENT="document">
    This tells the robot that the page is an html document and should be walked.

Related Tutorials

Oh No, not more META tags!
by turtle
URL: http://www.dwfaq.com/Miscellaneous/more_metas.asp

The Mystery of the robot.txt Revealed
by turtle
URL: http://www.dwfaq.com/Miscellaneous/robot_txt.asp

Related Resources

Please see our Search Engine Resources section.

::This page last modified 8/13/2013 at 09:37::

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