The power of metadata has been thoroughly abused by many websites; before search engines began sifting through tags, metadata was often filled with unhelpful and irrelevant tags in an attempt to bolster search engine results for the website. Currently, keywords within meta tags must also appear in other places like the title and the page’s content for search engines to consider the tags valid. Past abuse has caused an organization to start preparing a standard for meta tags. Known as Dublin Core metadata, this standard will build a way for search engines to begin relying on the tags for relevant website information.
The Dublin Core initiative has not gained much ground these last few years. The SEO impact will be astonishing if search engines began to provide weight to this set of metadata. The problem with the Dublin Core is similar to the standard meta tags; there is nothing stopping it from being abused. The initiative will need to find a way to prevent the possible levels of abuse, not to mention streamline what feels like an unnecessarily complex set of tags. The intentions are good, but Dublin Core does not look to have a way to be a valuable addition to search engine algorithms.
Deciding what to put into the metadata of a website can be a difficult decision. Throwing too much information into the tags will have an adverse effect on the SEO of a website. The search engine algorithms are highly advanced and will often dismiss or reduce the ranking of a website that employs shady practices when it comes to metadata. The Dublin Core meta tags are viewed in the same light and incorrect information within the tags will have detrimental effects on websites.
Metadata is a valuable resource and when combined properly with the content of a website will provide a boost to the SEO. Webmasters like to bloat the metadata in hopes of appearing higher in search engine results; this is simply not a good practice and will often lower a website’s rank, due to claiming keywords or information that is not actually present on the website. The Dublin Core initiative might at one point in the future become the standard for all metadata; unfortunately, it still has the same issues that the current metadata standards have, which gives it no value in a search engine algorithm. Proper SEO will take time and page rankings will rise slowly, but trying to cheat the way to the top will only cause a major crash in the end.