I always like to share snippets of useful information if I can, and today I came across something that has slipped under many a radar when it comes to SEO. 

It was only a comment from another professional in this area that made me seek clarity.
A little while ago our giant friend Google decided it wasn’t too keen on accordion drop downs or tabbed menus – the sort we all use for FAQs (see bottom of page for example of a tabbed version) or to get a lot of relevant information on a page and make the user experience better.
Google in its infinite wisdom has decided that if the content is not the first thing that people read when they get to a page, it is of less importance, and it will rank it so.

What does this mean to you if you use accordion features?

Well – we don’t really know yet. There is some argument that if you set the tabs to be open initially and then close on the first click all the content will be indexed, but this is by no means certain. Some people are rushing to take their content out of this very handy feature (which I really like) and creating new pages instead. There is a lot of testing going on and no-one as yet as a firm answer as to how it is affecting sites.

I guess my advice would be to keep an eye on your site if you use this feature. If you find that important parts of your copy are not being indexed and found by the search engines then you will need to act. If you are only using this area to lead people to contact you or as a good user experience for your visitors, this may not matter to you.

It is a salutary reminder that just because you think you understand current SEO best practice it doesn’t mean to say your knowledge is as current as you think it is.

I will now be digging deeper to see how to protect White Knight clients in the fight for ranking.

This the first tab, it has no content!
This may not be read by the search engines