In the past, people used to think that Google didn’t accept PDF files. But this misconception went down the road when ten years ago Google announced that it has been indexing PDF files since 2001 and currently has millions of PDF files indexed on its database.
Ever since then webmasters have been adding PDF content to their sites. Now it is true that PDF is accepted by Google for indexing but at the same time, you must know that it is not an SEO-friendly choice. You must only use PDF for your content in cases where the content requires extra effort to create the draft and you want people to save or print the content in the exact same format.
Some examples where you can use PDFs include eBooks, specification documents, white papers, and offline content. Most people who don’t know how to make PDFs SEO friendly would tend to convert PDF to word with online tools. But there is no need for that as in this post we have discussed some tips which would help you make your PDF files friendly for the search engine.
Best ways to make your PDFs friendly for the search engine
It is important that you make your PDFs SEO-friendly if you want to see your site in better ranking positions than your competitors. Without search engine optimization there is no way you can bring your site to the top shelves. Here we have mentioned some tips which would assist you in making your PDF SEO friendly.
Compress the PDF file to optimize its size
First, you should know that PDF files are heavy when it comes to their size. A PDF file that is large in size would always slow down the load time of your website. If the website loading time is more than three seconds then it is going to sink in the SERPs. Now if you want to optimize the file then you need to reduce its size. You can easily do it with the help of online PDF compressor tools.
Enrich the file name with keywords
Usually, rookie webmasters don’t care about changing the file name of PDFs. Well, you must know that if your PDF file name is irrelevant and has code/digits in it then it is only going to confuse the search engine. You need to treat the name of the PDF file like you would treat an H1 heading on your site. You have to make sure that you find keywords that are relevant to the contents of your PDF. You can use online keyword finder tools to get the relevant and top searched keyword for your file name. Make sure that the name you set is shorter and is in lowercase.
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Always use heading tags in the PDF file
Here you must know that PDF files would always contain a lot of information and can be confusing for the reader. If you want to make your PDF SEO friendly then you need to make sure that its contents are divided into multiple headings and subheadings. Adding heading tags is going to break the content into readable chunks. You need to make sure that every heading should be unique and should not be more than 100 characters. You can make the headings and subheadings SEO-friendly by simply adding keywords to them.
Make your PDFs friendly for mobile
Here an important thing that you need to know is that PDF content on websites cannot open properly on smaller screens like on mobiles or tablets. If your site’s content is not friendly and optimized for mobiles then it is going to result in a loss of SERPs. You need to make your file mobile-friendly. Some of the tips that can help you make your content friendly are:
- Always align your text to the left
- Use bullet points and lists
- Use images sparingly in the file
- Break content with multiple headings
- Always ensure that passages are not more than three to four lines
Link your pages with your PDF content
Another important SEO tip for making your PDFs friendly for mobile is to add backlinks to your pages. You need to add links to your web pages to your PDFs. This would add authority to your PDF content and would make it friendly for Google. You don’t have to always generate backlinks rather you can also do internal linking. While adding internal links you need to ensure that the anchor text is unique, relevant to the linked content, and has keywords in it.
These are some of the most authentic tips that can help you optimize your PDF for your website pages. You need to follow these tips if you want your PDF content to appear in the top search results.