Important things – the visual hierarchy
Page headings direct your attention.
When you go to a concert, you look at the stage and you focus on the performer. It’s why you go there.
The stage helps you understand very quickly what the important bit of the experience is. Unless you’re odd, it draws your attention away from the fire exits and electrical fittings.
Headings – create your own stage with HTML tags
You can create your own stage for your own audience using HTML tags.
HTML is the language used to create most web pages and a tag is just a snippet of code that tells your browser how to display the text.
The ‘H1’ Heading is the most important and in WordPress will be big. The sizes tail off, big fish to little fish, down to H6.
For well-presented, user-focused web pages we can use the bigger Headings (H1, H2, H3) to help the user quickly see the important bits and understand what the page is about. There’s normally only one H1 Heading per page – H1 is the place to tell the reader the big idea that everything else will flow from. It’s like a promise.
How to create headings
It’s normally done in these 2 steps:
- Step 1 – analysis of the content in the light of the objective. Is the content informational? Is it part of a direct sale? What are we trying to achieve?
- Step 2 –editing, writing and structuring of the new headings to support that objective
Adding or editing the right Heading Tags for the job will help your visitors to :
- understand where they are in the process
- understand what they need to do or where to go next
Headings for optimisation
If your pages or posts were never optimised when they were written then adding fresh tagged headings (that made me think of herrings 🙂 ) is a very effective way of upping your game. It’s big impact / low disruption work.
If you’re starting with a clean sheet on a new page or post keep thinking of how those herrings will improve the user experience.
Headings for existing old content or for new content can be coded directly into the HTML body, or straight into your posts and pages via your content management system (WordPress?).
Now do a user experience audit
Look at that visual hierarchy on your own website. Have you got one?
Are you acting as an editor, guide and navigator for the experience of your viewers?
Or…… has the content just been tipped in, like jelly into a mould?
If everything looks equally important, you make it harder for people to get to the decision point you want.
A clear visual hierarchy will point your customers in the right direction.
For help with this contact wordraising
(ps: optimised Heading Tags will help your Search Engine Optimisation too. That’s because user-experience is a big ranking factor. But that’s another story.)