Tips to Optimise PDF's for SEO

5 Tips to Optimise PDF’s for SEO

By Sadie on April 6, 2010

optimising pdfs for SEO

Google can index and crawl PDFs so to improve the optimisation of your whole website it is a good idea to optimise PDF’s on your website here are a few tips from the Falkon Digital¬†team.

Many sites use PDFs to display Case studies, brochures, or high graphical images of products or services, Google will struggle with the high-resolution images on a PDF just as it struggles to see and rank images but Google can index the content and this could be good relevant content that should be utilised.

Did you know – Search Engines Can Read PDF Documents?

Have you ever done a search and seen a PDF come up in the search engine? This is because Google and search engines can read the content on a PDF just as well and sometimes better than some websites. If you have a flash website it could be that a PDF on your site does better than the actual website, however PDF’s can cause search engines a few problems and just like an HTML website you can optimise them to do better in the SERP’s.

  • 1. Write your PDF to be keyword rich

We advise writing SEO friendly content where appropriate on your website, and writing PDF’s should be the same. Try to include keywords in titles and have a good keyword density throughout the rest of the site.

  • 2. Use Microsoft Word to create your PDF

If you are using a lot of images it can be tempting to use InDesign or PhotoShop to create the PDF’s for your website, but try to use Microsoft word if possible. Microsoft Word is a text-based program and once you have created the PDF you will still be able to highlight the copy – this is a trick to see if Google will be able to read it. Using image-based programs like PhotoShop will render the text as an image so you will not be able to highlight the text and search engines like Google will not be able to read them.

  • 3. Optimise the PDF as you would an HTML page

If you create the PDF in Word you should be able to optimise it as you would an HTML page, including META Data, title tags and keywords in the file name.

  • 4. Make sure there is no duplicate content

If your PDF has content that is also on your website, such as a product page or a blog article then you should noindex either the page or the PDF, try to keep the content on every page or PDF unique, people often forget that PDF’s can be indexed and have duplicate content on their website.

  • 5. Make sure the PDF is good quality

At the end of the day, the PDF is ideal for your website users to download and keep so don’t compromise the quality of the content.