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Headings – H1, H2, H3 Tags

If someone lands on your page and feels overwhelmed, they’re likely to hit the back button and leave your site right away. While headings aren’t believed to directly impact your rankings, they indirectly improve SEO by making it easier for your users to scan and digest the content on your website, which makes them more likely to stay on your site longer. They also make your pages more accessible, which means people who are blind and use screen readers can successfully navigate through your site. If you have a storefront or a physical location people come to, it’s especially important to make sure your website is accessible to blind, low vision, or hearing impaired visitors to avoid ADA compliance risks.

So exactly what are Heading Tags? Headings help you communicate how your site is organized to both visitors and the search engines. There are 6 heading levels and they are added using HTML code. The most important heading is H1. The higher the heading number, the less important it is.

Let’s look at some Heading Tag examples.

Below, you’ll see a sample that uses just 3 of the heading levels. Notice that there is only 1 H1 heading and that the other headings are orderly with headings with higher numbers subordinate to the headings with lower numbers.

Main Heading

Sub Heading

Sub-sub Heading

Sub-sub Heading 2

Sub Heading 2

Sub-sub Heading 3

Sub-sub Heading 4

You’ll want to put your keywords in the headings to the extent they make sense. For example, this tutorial is about Heading Tags, and we might be trying to optimize for the keyword “heading tags.” This is how we would use heading tags in a text version of this course. Note the keyword is in some, but not all of the headings and that these headings provide useful guidance and organizes what we are actually talking about.

On Page Optimization: Heading Tags

What are Heading Tags?

Heading Tag Examples

How to Add Heading Tags

WordPress Editor


You can add heading tags in content management systems like WordPress, Wix, or Squarespace, or directly in HTML. We’ll show you how to do it in WordPress and HTML.

From the WordPress Editor, edit the text block with the heading. Select the text you would like to make your heading and choose the heading you’d like to use from the style drop down.

You can also add headings directly in HTML from the Text tab. Simply put the opening and closing tags around the text you want to use as the header. H1 would be formatted as the H1 header in the example below because it’s in between the opening H1 tag and the closing H1 tag.






Need help adding headings to text on your Squarespace or Wix website? Follow the links  below for step-by-step instructions.

View the next lesson, Internal Linking.

Return to the SEO Course page.

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  1. Ricardo Gonzelez

    Thanks for the excellent contribution. In SEO it is still worth putting the keywords in the title of the article as well as at the beginning of the content.

    • Ellen Thompson

      Yes. Putting keywords in the title tag and throughout the content are the cornerstones of on page SEO.


    I really like your wp template, wherever did you download it from? Thank-you in advance!


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