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  • Writer's pictureBrent Payne

Addressing Canonical Tags Outside of the <head> Section


Problem Overview

Having a canonical tag outside of the <head> section can lead to it being ignored by search engines, negating its intended purpose.


Why Proper Placement Matters

Canonical tags are crucial for indicating the preferred version of a page to search engines. If placed outside the <head>, these tags lose their effectiveness, impacting SEO.


Diagnostic Approach

1. Detection: Identifying canonical tags outside the <head> section.

2. Impact Assessment: Evaluating how this misplacement affects search engine indexing and ranking.


Resolving the Issue

1. Verification: Check if the <head> section contains invalid HTML elements, as these can cause early closure of the <head>, pushing the canonical tag into the <body>.

2. Correction: Move the canonical tag to the correct location within the <head>.

3. Template and Plugin Review: Inspect page templates or plugins that might be incorrectly inserting canonical tags.


Educational Resources

- HTML Best Practices: https://www.w3.org/TR/html52/


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