There are several people who are of the opinion that PDF files cannot qualify for SEO and that any website that contains any kind of a PDF file will fail to be scrutinized by search engines for SEO capabilities. This is where they go wrong. PDF files, just like any other file bear immense importance in terms of SEO and therefore, when creating, editing or even uploading PDF files, there are certain SEO tips and tricks that you must consider to get your files and website to reach out to a much wider audience. To put it simply, Google and other search engines most definitely index files in the PDF format.Given below are some simple SEO tips that will help you PDF documents get a better exposure in search engines. This is particularly important if you are involved in a business and wish to put across your annula report or other such documents for the audiences to witness so that it can instill a certain amount of trust and credibility.
1.) Convert PDF files:
For a PDF file to be read and indexed by the search engine, it should be submitted in a suitable format that is actually understood by the particular search engine. For this reason, it is important to convert the PDF files into OCR format. OCR is short for Acrobat Optical Character Recognition and as the name suggests, it converts the file into a text format that is readable by search engines. However, you need to take note that not all PDF files need this conversion. Essentially, the best way to judge this is by selecting a chunk of text using your mouse. In an ideal situation, the text must get highlighted. If it does, you need not convert, however, if it does not, then you will have to.
2.) Stick to dashes as opposed to spaces or underbars:
As a rule of thumb, every time you name your PDF file, the spaces between the words must be enveloped in dashes. Avoid keeping the space between two words empty or using underbars as Google and other search engines prefer dashes over the other methods. Apart from selecting a file name that is most probably a medium ranking keyword, you must use dashes. There is a high possibility that your file will be ranked higher in the search engines by merely taking this small step.
3.) An additional page in the PDF file:
Your PDF file may contain information that you may not necessarily want to alter as per the SEO norms and therefore, it may fail to get the various search engines’ attention. However, there is an excellent way to counter this problem. To avoid losing the opportunity of being indexed, you must include an additional page at the beginning of your actual PDF document. This page must essentially contain the title of the document, preferably having a keyword as also the date of creation. Once you have done that include a write-up introducing the document and what exactly the pages inside contain. This introduction should be more than 100 words but must not exceed 400 words. Besides, include some keywords scattered across the introduction.
4.) The anchor text that you use matters:
It is important that you use the right words to link to the PDF file. Phrases like ‘Click Here for more Information’ are far too generic. However, if you use a phrase that describes the document in short and then link it to the PDF file, the search engines will be able to understand it better and therefore, rank it higher.
Karl Moore is an SEO specialist and works with a well known SEO firm. He has recently learnt how to combine PDF files. He has a professional background in marketing and was briefly working with a media company.