HTML Meta Element

The HTML meta element is used to set specific characteristics of the web page and provide information to readers and search engines. The HTML Meta element has no ending tag. Attributes

  • http-equiv - Possible values are:
    • refresh - The browser will reload the document after the specified seconds specified with the CONTENT value have ellapsed. Ex: <META HTTP-EQUIV="refresh" CONTENT="45"> The browser will reload the document in 45 seconds
    • expires - Gives the date that content in the document is considered unreliable.
    • reply-to - An email address of the responsible party for the web page. This attribute is not commonly used. Ex: <META HTTP-EQUIV="reply-to" CONTENT="ctdp@tripod.com">
  • name - Provides non-critical information about the document possibly useful to someone looking at it. Possible values are:
    • author - The person who made the page or the HTML editor name . Ex: <META NAME="author" CONTENT="Mark Allen">
    • description - An explanation of the page or its use. The value here is used by search engines at times to provide a page summary. Ex: <META NAME="description" CONTENT="The CTDP Home Page">
    • copyright - A copyright notice for the page. Ex: <META NAME="copyright" CONTENT="Copyright 2000, Mark Allen">
    • keywords - A list of keywords which are separated by commas. These keywords are used by search engines. EX: <META name="keywords" content="computer documentation, computers, documentation, computer help">
    • robots - Used by some search engines to specify whether a page should be indexed. Possible values include:
      • all - The default value indicating the page should be indexed and that links on the page should be followed by the robot.
      • index - Indicates the page should be indexed by search engine robots.
      • follow - Indicates that links on the page should be followed by search engine robots.
      • none - Indicates that links on the page should not be followed and the page should not be indexed.
      • noindex - Indicates the page should NOT be indexed by search engine robots.
      • nofollow - Indicates that links on the page should NOT be followed by search engine robots.

      The META name and description sections are very important if you want your web page to be found by search engines. Please note that keywords are separated by commas, not spaces and that the words "computer documentation" are treated by search engines as one word. If someone enters the phrase "computer documentation" when doing a search, it gives the web page a much greater chance of being found than just having the separate keywords "computer" and "documentation". The description section should not be the same as the page title but should be a sentence or two describing the page that is recommended to be a part of the page.

    • date - <META name="date" content="2000-05-07T09:10:56+00:00">
  • content - Specifies a property's value such as the content of this document is text/HTML.
  • scheme - Names a scheme to be used to interpret the property's value.