From the title of this article, many of you may be wondering, what exactly is W3C compliance and what does it have to do with SEO? I’ll start by giving a quick rundown on W3C Compliance, then how it can impact your search ranking.
What is W3C Compliance?
W3C stands for the World Wide Web Consortium which has been established to provide guidelines about how webpage’s should be created and structured. The group publishes a number of best practice design principles which should be employed by webmasters when creating any new pages for their site.
W3C Compliance ensures your code meets these guidelines and will render the same or very similar across all major browsers and platforms. Validating your code to comply with these standards is easy – simply use the W3C Code Validator.
What Does it Mean for SEO?
Put simply: Bringing your code into compliance with W3C guidelines will help your SEO efforts. There are a couple of major reasons for this which includes the spider’s ability to read your code and position of your content.
By ensuring your code complies with W3C standards you are creating a very clean and well structured HTML document which becomes easy reading for search engine spiders. By removing excess tags and generating neat code, search spiders can easily determine where your content starts and ends to rank the document without confusion.
Cleaning the code also skews the content-code ratio towards the content side and brings important keywords to the top of the page – both of which can help search engine ranking.
While W3C Validation is unlikely to be the “magic potion” to top search engine results (nothing is these days) it’s a great way to get an edge over competitors in search competitive industries. You’ll also be left with a website that is accessible across more browsers and operating systems – something that is sure to help conversion in the long run!