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I want to use images that I created in PS for page titles. Because they will be images they will not be picked up by Google, etc. What is the best practice for hiding the <h1>? I was planning on setting the <h1> visibility to hidden. Is this ok to do?

update

I want to hide <h1> tag behind header image. I read how to do it if I just link an image (fine). My header is a little different. I have a background image taking up the whole header div. On top of that I have a flash file playing (mostly transparent) with some star burst effects. I want this to be SEO friendly.

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2 Answers

up vote 6 down vote accepted

Use it like this

<h1>
  <a href="http://website.com">
    <img src="image.jpg" alt="My Website" />
  </a>
</h1>

Check this link from a Google Webmaster: http://www.youtube.com/user/GoogleWebmasterHelp#p/search/0/fBLvn_WkDJ4

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What if I want to use a background image? –  Ibanez Jan 27 '12 at 2:32
    
"What if I want to use a background image?" Then you may as well include text in the H1 and use a set height, width, and "overflow:none" to hide the text. –  danlefree Jan 27 '12 at 4:01
    
I want to include text in it. That's the whole purpose. All I want to do is replace text with a more attractive image where the font looks nicer and hide the underlying text without getting black balled by Google. Thanks –  Ibanez Jan 27 '12 at 16:44
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If you're trying to hide an <h1> tag behind an entire page header then you're probably abusing the <h1> tag and what you're doing would be considered black hat SEO as that would almost certainly not be considered a page title or heading and would ultimately get you in trouble with the search engines.

The <h1> is essentially to be used for the page heading which is like the page's or document's title. The big image at the top of a page really doesn't serve that purpose especially if it's the same from page-to-page.n If that is the case here then you definitely shouldn't be doing this. Also, if you need to hide something for the search engines' sake that usually is a good sign you probably shouldn't be doing something. There are exceptions but they are few and far between.

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So is this valid and a good option for SEO? <h1> <img src="image.png" width="240" height="23" alt="My image text" /> </h1> –  Ibanez Jan 27 '12 at 16:49
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