Code Search Engine Optimisation is dying

I have been doing Search Engine Optimisation (SEO) for a few years now and have seen a big change that could be for the best, or for the worst.

When I first started, all I was told was the best SEO is done code base. You need to make sure your code is validated by W3C, use you H1 tags and get as many anchors in there as you can. You had to make sure the code was as SEO friendly as possible because that was what search engines looked at for great sites.

Even before that the biggest thing was Keywords Meta tag, which now you do not use at all because search engines said people just flood that tag with words for better ranking. Everyone over used this tag so the search engines said they would stop using them to help rankings. I even tell others not to put it in there code as you could get down ranked because other search engines use it to determine you as spam, plus it get them in routine. This is what I am seeing with code base SEO now though.


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As times have change I have seen mainly google as always, becoming smarter with it’s crawling system to determine if you are a relevant site. Google has got better at reading your content and then marking you as a valid site more then looking at you code. It seems the code side is now more to show the skill level of the site and tell the search engines where to look.

I can understand that anyone can become a good coder and push a website, which you don’t want. You want to have the most relevant website come to you in your search results. This is why they got rid of the meta tag keywords, because it was to easy for people to fudge their website to rank better. Now you have to have good quality content, that make senses as well, plus trying to get as many as your keywords in the text in context as well. 

I don’t think the coding side will be pushed out like the meta tag was, simply because search engines need it as much as we need them. When they crawl the website, it needs to know where to look. I recently saw a SEO error, which said there was too many H1 tags so search engines may be confused as to what is the important title. Though I do believe the coding side will not weight much in your websites ranking, as the search engines want to deliver good content and the user wants good content. No one cares about the good coding as long as it functions, except a well functioning website will have good code.

I would think that the coding element of SEO will always be there, but I think the amount it counts to your websites rankings will slowly decrease, as the search engines look more at you content and presence across the web instead. The code can’t tell them if you are relevant to the users search but content can, though search engines can’t know what is the most important content without the code.

Published by Chris Pateman - PR Coder

A Digital Technical Lead, constantly learning and sharing the knowledge journey.

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