1. This site uses cookies. By continuing to use this site, you are agreeing to our use of cookies. Learn More.

Themes and SEO and the H tags

Discussion in 'White Hat SEO' started by goinviral, Oct 5, 2011.

  1. goinviral

    goinviral BANNED BANNED

    Joined:
    Jun 3, 2011
    Messages:
    408
    Likes Received:
    193
    We have all been there. Started a new site and have headed over to wordpress.org or themeforest or even one of the template sharing sites around the web. We look through a few themes and after a while one catches our eye and we install it.

    Right?

    I learnt a while ago not to do this..

    Why?

    Because most theme designers are exactly that.. Designers!

    Most designers have no real clue about SEO, they are usually thinking about colors and in general just the look of the site.

    Underneath all that color and and design lies the html code and this html code is what google, at least in part, uses to rank our sites. I know backlinking is also very important.

    Now this brings me to the H tags. Google uses alot more that H tags to analyse your site I know. But this post is only about how themes use the H tag.

    The H1 which is arguably the most important tag of all the H tags (although if you read ipopbb's posts this may not be the case) anyway it should be in the heading of your main index and generally talks about your niche.

    So if your site is about gold fish diseases the h1 on the front page should be "Gold Fish Diseases" However when you click on one of your posts The title of that actual post should become the H1 tags. SO if the post is about "Anchor Worm" which is a type of gold fish disease then the H1 is "Anchor Worm" and the title at the top should either become normal text or as I prefer becommes a h2 or h3 or even sometimes a h4 depending on the site and niche.

    So in the above example the post will Look like this..

    <h2>Gold Fish Diseases</2>

    <h1>Anchor Worm</h1>

    this all sounds simple right?

    Well most themes don't do this, especially the free themes.

    As a result while I am trying to rank the site I basically use a modified version of Twenty10, After it has ranked I might switch in another theme I have modified.

    Another theme that does this properly is "ctr theme", however even "heatmap" does not do this properly.

    And before you start talking about SEO plugins fixing the problem. None that I have looked have fixed it.. All in one seo definitely doesn't and neither does Gregs SEO and SEO ultimate is so touchy about what other plugins you use, it crashes constantly.

    Anyway if anyone out there has a plugin they can recommend that fixes this situation I would love to hear from them.
     
    • Thanks Thanks x 1
    Last edited: Oct 5, 2011
  2. Autumn

    Autumn Elite Member

    Joined:
    Nov 18, 2010
    Messages:
    2,197
    Likes Received:
    3,041
    Occupation:
    I figure out ways to make money online and then au
    Location:
    Spamville
    You just modify your themes to put the header tags and other SEO shit you want in the right places, it takes 5 minutes. If you want to add extra headers or text fields to your posts then you can use wordpress custom fields, and add those to your templates as well.
     
    • Thanks Thanks x 1
  3. goinviral

    goinviral BANNED BANNED

    Joined:
    Jun 3, 2011
    Messages:
    408
    Likes Received:
    193
    Hi Autumn that is basically what I do. However I am wondering are there any plugins out there that can do this for you? If not, then I might write one. I have been using php for ten years now.
     
  4. Autumn

    Autumn Elite Member

    Joined:
    Nov 18, 2010
    Messages:
    2,197
    Likes Received:
    3,041
    Occupation:
    I figure out ways to make money online and then au
    Location:
    Spamville
    That would be a tricky plugin to write because of all the different ways that titles are structured into existing themes. For example some designers use header tags wrapping around the_title() and some just use a div or a span with a custom css class, some use the proper before and after arguments to the_title() etc. Most designers use h1 for the blog title, possibly h2 or a div and custom class for the blog tagline etc. Your plugin would have to cover all the bases.

    Personally I think the better way is to use fewer plugins and not more and just to hard code your themes however you want. Then you know your themes are "standardized" to how you like them and are going to robustly work how you want them too without the added complication of yet another plugin.

    I made myself a handy "cheat sheet" for quickly modifying themes so I could quickly go through page by page of each theme and copy and paste in the mods I always use. Here's a screenshot: http://i.imgur.com/ipvET.jpg

    If you're organized it only takes a few mins to mod a theme; most of the time is spent finding a theme that you actually like.
     
    • Thanks Thanks x 1
  5. goinviral

    goinviral BANNED BANNED

    Joined:
    Jun 3, 2011
    Messages:
    408
    Likes Received:
    193
    That is a great cheat sheet! don't suppose you can upload a bigger image?
     
  6. madoctopus

    madoctopus Supreme Member

    Joined:
    Apr 4, 2010
    Messages:
    1,249
    Likes Received:
    3,498
    Occupation:
    Full time IM
    It takes like 15min to fix a shitty theme for the most important stuff. Much better is to just build one from scratch if you're looking to also have good conversion rate. Personally I have a framework theme that I just reuse all the time and just change the CSS. Wasn't easy to build it but now it saves me time when I have to build a top quality site. For low level support sites I just spend the 15min to fix the free theme.

    A plugin to do that automatically is impossible to make.

    WP is shit in terms of SEO. Lots of people say is great but they have no clue wtf they talk about. First and biggest problem is the reommendations that the WP codex gives to theme developers. They are BAD BAD BAD. Like using <ul> for sidebar panels/widgets and H2 for the widget titles. Not to mention the other 50 things. Those folks who developed WP are simply bad developers, most WP theme and plugin developers are also bad developers. Only community of good developers I've seen for a CMS is the Drupal community. Drupal is actually properly architected and implemented. Is not perfect either but a billion times better than WP. The fact that Drupal can do about 1000 times more things and in a better way compared to WP yet the rendering time with caching turned off is similar to that of WP tells you how shitty WP is. I'm a PHP developer and a properly architected and implemented CMS that does what WP does should require at least 10 times less time to render a page.
     
  7. smokestakks

    smokestakks Newbie

    Joined:
    Sep 20, 2010
    Messages:
    23
    Likes Received:
    1
    You can do this with conditional tags. In single.php, make sure the post title is H1.
    In header.php, change the logo/top H1 to have this behavior:

    IF (is_home())
    Site title = H1
    ELSE
    Site title = H4
    ENDIF

    Google "wordpress conditional tags" and you'll find what you need.
    I'd advice against using plugins beacause 3rd party content can make your site slower and bloated, remember that page speed is a ranking factor.