As noted in another thread, Google appears to have stopped using the Description tag altogether. That said, your page is very nicely designed visually, and with a tiny tweak, it will have the semantic oomph to really kick some serious butt (SEO-wise, anyway).
You have a bold block of text at the top of the page, but you’ve styled this as a simple P (paragraph) tag. If you duplicate that style in your Styles palette, assign it to the H1 tag, and add the following Extended tweaks to it, you will be able to use the first sentence of that block as your H1 tag (which I think it really is, semantically speaking) without changing the visual appearance of your layout at all.
Click on the gear menu in your Styles palette, and choose Edit Styles… Select style4 from the list in the left-hand pane of the resulting dialog. If there is nothing in the Tag field, enter ‘p’ or choose it from the popup list of tags. Be sure to click in another field so this choice “sticks”. Click on the Extended button, then click New. In the name field, enter ‘display’ (without the quotes) and in the value field, enter ‘inline’. Okay that dialog, and from the gear menu at the bottom of the styles list choose Duplicate.
In the new duplicate style, enter or choose h1 in the Tag field, and some descriptive name like main in the Name field. Everything about the style you already created (style4) will carry over to this new style, but there are a couple of things you’ll need to add in order to override the default behavior of header tags in general.
Click the Extended button, then the New button. In the name field, enter ‘font-weight’ and in the value field, enter ‘normal’. Okay that, and the Extended dialog, and the Edit Styles dialog.
Back in your layout, put a single return after the first sentence in your headline. Don’t worry about this – it won’t appear in your site because of the display:inline trick we added earlier. But it has to be there because you can’t add an H tag to a fragment of text – it has to be an entire “paragraph” of text.
Select the entire first “paragraph” (well, line) of text, and click [No Style] in the styles palette. Then click your new h1.main style to apply it to the highlighted text. Highlight the next bit of text in that block, press [No Style] and then re-apply your p.style4. Preview, and you’ll see that the two separate blocks of text will appear to be one paragraph of identical text. Under the covers, the H1 will be immediately followed by a descriptive P and that is as good as it gets, semantically speaking, for describing the unique value of this particular page.
Now, it’s important to note that this is not just a visual style – you can’t just go applying it to anything you like in your page. A page is supposed to have ONE h1 tag, and the paragraph or paragraphs immediately following that tag in source order are the most important things on the page in the search engine’s eyes. It’s also a very good idea to have many of the words used in your H1 repeated in the Title tag of the page. So in your case, I would extend the Title tag to something like ‘Gutter Magazine - New Fiction and Poetry from Scotland’.
Give this a try, you have a a great page and it needs so little to give it a lift.
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