Directives: Outside <head>

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Outside <head>

Pages with a meta robots that is outside of the <head> element in the HTML.

The meta robots should be within the <head> element, or search engines may ignore it.

Google will typically still recognise meta robots such as a ‘noindex’ directive, even outside of the <head> element, however this should not be relied upon.

How to Analyse in the SEO Spider

View URLs with this issue in the ‘Directives’ tab and ‘Outside <head>’ filter, and export all URLs using the ‘Export’ button.

Check to see if there are any ‘Invalid HTML Elements in Head’ under the ‘Validation’ tab, that could be the cause.

If this issue has also been triggered, use our ‘How To Debug Invalid HTML Elements In The Head‘ tutorial to debug.

What Triggers This Issue

This issue is triggered when pages have a meta robots tag placed outside of the <head> element in the HTML.


<!DOCTYPE html>
<meta name="robots" content=""noindex">

How To Fix

To ensure that search engines follow specified directives, include meta robots tags in the <head> element of a page’s HTML.

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