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Third Party Meta Tags in ↓markdown↓ CMS

Tek Eye has several articles to show how to set up and build a website using the ↓markdown↓ Content Management System (md-CMS). When using md-CMS, the website content is stored in Markdown format files (with a file extension of .md). The .md files are stored in folders on the website hosting server. The folders mimic the website structure. Thus, md-CMS does not use a database to store content, making it easy to maintain, fast, and transportable between web servers.

The ↓markdown↓ CMS File Header

The .md files can have a header section to enable extra features for the content sent out as a web page, including support for some HTML meta tags, see the article on the md-CMS Page Header and Meta Tags. This article provides additional coverage on specific meta tags recognised by organisations. For example, Twitter recognises a set of meta tags than help format a Twitter Card about a web page's content.

Simple HTML Meta Tag Example

Here is a basic HTML web page from the Tek Eye article Hello World in HTML. The author meta tag has been added:

<!DOCTYPE html>
        <meta name="author" content="Tek Eye" />
        <title>Basic Web Page</title>
Hello World!

To see if any meta tags exist for a web page use the browser function to view the web page's source code (normally via a browser's context menu, typically the right-click mouse button). The above author meta tag would have been added with this md-CMS content header. (Note: the meta tag name in the md-CMS header is not case sensitive, both Author and author will work.):

Title: Basic Web Page
Author: Tek Eye

Some organisations define meta tags that help them process web pages within their services. The md-CMS content header can support some of those meta tags.

Third Party Meta Tags

The services that use HTML meta tags which are supported by md-CMS are:

  • Google Scholar tags for defining citation information to aid inclusion in their database.
  • Facebook have their Open Graph Markup to help display information about web pages on Facebook feeds. See also The Open Graph protocol for additional information.
  • Twitter provide Card Tags to help embed web site content into tweets.

Supporting Google Scholar Meta Tags in md-CMS

The Google Scholar Inclusion Guidelines state that different type of citation tag formats are support. For md-CMS content the meta tag names that begin with citation_ are used. See the inclusion guidelines for the list of the citation_ tags available. In this example the citation_title meta tag name is defined, i.e.:

<meta name="citation_title" content="Basic Web Page">

The md-CMS content header below shows how to add the above Google Scholar citation meta tag:

Citation_title: Basic Web Page

Supporting Facebook Open Graph Meta Tags in md-CMS

The developer web pages for Open Graph meta tags shows a list of all the og: tags. Here is an example of the og:title tag:

<meta name="og:title" content="Basic Web Page" />

To support Open Graph tags in md-CMS convert any colons to underscores (the colon is already in use by md-CMS). The underscores are converted to colons in the published HTML. To get the above HTML meta tag use this md-CMS header:

Og_title: Basic Web Page

Supporting Twitter Card Meta Tags in md-CMS

Similar to Facebook Open Graph tag names, the Twitter Card meta data tags use a colon. See the Twitter Card Tags web pages for a full list of the available tags. Here is an example of the twitter:title meta tag:

<meta name="twitter:title" content="Basic Web Page">

Again convert any colons to an underscore in the md-CMS header section:

Twitter_title: Basic Web Page

Simple Support for Third Party Meta Tags, i.e., GIGO

The md-CMS software does not validate the third party tags. What is entered in the md-CMS header is written to the web pages HTML. I.e., garbage in, garbage out (GIGO). For example, this md-CMS header:

Og_rubbish: This is not an Open Graph tag.

Will produce this in the HTML:

<meta name="og:rubbish" content="This is not an Open Graph tag.">

I.e., the author of the md-CMS header content is responsible for getting the tag names and content correct. There is an advantage to this, any new tags defined by one of the above organisations can be used without needing to update the md-CMS software.

And Finally

Correct use of meta data tags can aid Search Engine Optimisation (SEO). However, meta data is not the key to good SEO, it is high quality content that matters.

See Also

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