What are headers?

Headers are the – wait for it – headlines that you see on web pages. They are important for SEO because they help Google and other search engines understand your content and make web pages more user-friendly.

HTML defines six levels of headers:

  • H1
  • H2
  • H3
  • H4
  • H5
  • H6

It is not required to utilize all six levels on a given page; in fact, many web pages only use H1 and H2 headers. However, headers should appear in that order; the H1 header should always be first.

Think of “What are Headers?” above as an H1 header and “Headers Help Readers Find What They Are Looking For” below as an H2 header.

Headers Help Readers Find What They Are Looking For

Web users are busy and prone to quickly skimming web pages to make a determination on whether the page is worth interacting with. One way to think about headers is to view them as a “skimming aid”. A reader who skims a page on your website, reading only the headers, come away with an accurate idea of the topic and purpose of your web page. This is made possible by writing relevant, informative, and useful headers that accurately describe the content in the paragraphs below them.