Picto thématique

Rule n° 227 - Each page’s content is organized according to a hierarchical structure of headings and sub-headings.

Titles and subtitles allow browsers, engines and voice tools to restore the structure of a page. Thus, users can directly access the content they are interested in.

#Accessibility #SEO #Structure and code #Development #Editorial


  • Allow interested users to view and navigate through the structure of the page’s content.
  • Enable machines and indexing tools to extract each page’s map.
  • Improve SEO by simplifying the content’s interpretation by web crawlers.
  • Improve the accessibility of content for people with disabilities.
  • Improve the way content is taken into account by search engines and indexing tools.


Structure the document into titles and subtitles using the HTML elements h1 to h6.

Make sure that the structure does not contain "holes": a title at level h2 must not be followed by an h4, h5 or h6 title for example

Ensure that every page has at least one level 1 title with the h1 element.

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On each page, check in sequence:

  • that there is at least one element h1 corresponding to the title of the main section of the page content;
  • that there are sub-titles h2 to h6 (if necessary) corresponding to the titles of the sub-sections of the main page content;
  • that titles h1 to h6 follow successively without interruption, that for example a title h1 is not followed by a title h3.

The check must be carried out taking into account any title elements hidden on display or titles generated by JavaScript. For this purpose, you can use the display function of the table of contents of the page available in some development tools.

By Opquast - Read the license

Overview and background

The 240 Opquast rules are defined and agreed upon by an extensive community of web professionals and academics. These web quality assurance guidance rules started as a list of best practices 20 years ago. They have since been revised every five years and have been tried and tested via millions of web interactions by Opquast community’s customers, including the leading CMS communities which have developed plugins for WordPress, Drupal and Prestashop. The most recent version, v4, was established in 2020.

Each rule has individual technical sheets and the rules can be searched by project phase or various topics: e-commerce, data-privacy, internationalization, security, code, etc, or by themes: accessibility, SEO, mobile, privacy, and ecodesign. The complete checklist is available on a creative commons license BY-SA.

To learn more about the Opquast approach, read this article published at Smashing Magazine

Broad application and benefits

The rules should be applied to your projects from the design phase through to post-implementation , and they should be understood by all professionals with web and customer experience (CX) responsibilities: from strategy to operations, marketers to project managers, and editorial to technical staff. The benefits of using this ruleset are numerous, including improving customer satisfaction, web performance, and e-commerce, and expanding your client base, while also decreasing your errors and costs.

Multidisciplinary verticles - accessiiblity, SEO, e-commerce, ecodesign etc..- starting from the foundational Opquast base.

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The objective of these rules and the Opquast community mission is ‘making the web better’ for your customers and for everyone! Opquast rules cover the key major areas of risk that can negatively affect website users such as privacy, ecodesign, accessibility and security.

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