Search engine optimization is increasingly being adopted by advertisers all over the world. Not only is it an effective way to increase traffic for your web page via a search engine, but it also does not require spending any money! An SEO strategy is hence, the need of the hour.
Due to the straightforward definition, SEO is often related to a single kind of optimization. But that is far from the truth. Your web page needs more than one kind of optimization to attract sufficient traffic from search engines and influence search algorithms.
As a result, SEO is generally available in a variety of types
- On-page SEO
- Off-page SEO
- Local SEO
- Technical SEO
- App store optimization
- Youtube SEO
Depending on the nature of the web pages, some of these types are more important than others to influence the search results. Even so, this blog post will provide you with everything you need to know about tech SEO.
Understanding Tech Search Engine Optimization
As the name suggests, technical SEO refers to website and server optimizations to help search engines index your website more effectively. As a result, your website’s organic traffic is increased.
According to Brightedge, 53% of all website traffic comes from organic search results. In addition, 68% of the people surveyed claimed that their online experience began with search engines.
A technical SEO ensures that you meet all of the nitty-gritty requirements of modern-day search engines and their updated algorithms.
So to help you get your head around all of this information, we’ve put together this complete checklist of technical SEO requirements. This will ensure you are well on your way to getting the most exposure out of the Google search console.
The Need for Tech SEO for Web Pages
There are still a vast number of websites out there that only focus on the on-page elements of their web pages. As long as everything looks good on the surface, then the website is functioning correctly, right?
Even though a functional page is essential for guiding visitors to the different aspects of your website, there can still be a number of issues. Your traffic numbers could be suffering because of a litany of technical SEO issues that are bubbling beneath the surface.
A common misconception is that search algorithm is technologically advanced and uses a lot of advanced artificial intelligence. This belief makes it seem like these search engines will be able to crawl and index your website perfectly every time.
But that’s far from the truth. Even though search engines like google have poured numerous resources into perfecting this process, it’s not perfect. Technical issues are still going to cause problems with search results, which means you are going to suffer hits to your rankings.
Moreover, technical SEO helps you gain an edge over other websites. It tells search engines to promote your content in an organic manner.
So, the question remains: How do you start incorporating technical SEO into your website?
Conducting a Technical SEO Audit
Think of your website like a car. It needs to be regularly serviced and maintained. You want to replace aging components with newer, better, and more efficient parts. Your website is exactly the same.
You need to routinely conduct technical SEO audits to ensure that everything is working correctly under the hood. Here are the steps you can follow while conducting an audit.
This is the foundation of your entire technical SEO audit Sydney. Search bots from the Google search console and others are crawling your site to find as much information as they can, and you need to ensure they are getting the correct information from your site.
If there are any pages or components of your site that are blocking these crawlers for whatever reason, then this needs to be addressed. This could be hurting your SEO.
Has your site been indexed by the major search engines? If it hasn’t, then it is not going to appear in searches. During your audit, look for noindex tags in your HTML meta tags and remove them if required.
In addition, check your Robots.txt file for any errors, as this is the file that controls the crawling and indexing of your website. Likewise, any errors in your .htaccess file can cause indexation errors.
A renderability checklist is useful for determining how accessible your website is for an average user. It includes aspects like:
- Server performance
- HTTP status
- The overall page loading time
- Page sizes (in terms of files)
- Page depth or how many layers or clicks there are away from the homepage
- Orphan pages that are not linked to other URLs on your site
- Redirect chains – as these can slow down or halt the crawling process if not set up correctly.
- Dead links
How many websites are linking back to your site? These are called backlinks and are favoured by search engines like Google. How many internal links do you have set up? These can help search engines understand the workflow of your site.
List all of your backlinks and internal and external ones, utilizing online tools to help you compare them to that of your competitor.
Improving your click-through rate also impacts your rankings on a search engine. Use structured data and schema to ensure you are speaking the language of crawlers.
Include SERP features like videos, images, articles, FAQs, product lists, site links, and keyword phrases that might appear in Google’s “People Also Ask” box.
What is Schema?
Schema markup, or ‘structured data, is one of the most powerful and underutilized forms of web content optimization. It can help you to jump ahead of your competitors, right to the top of the SERPs. In addition, it controls how your content appears on the search results pages.
But despite the importance of structured data and its role in attracting organic traffic, many marketers and SEOs still aren’t unfamiliar with the term.
In a nutshell, a Schema tells Google and other search engines what the content on your website means. It helps search engines to understand what’s on the page by organizing and interpreting the information there.
How Schema Influences Search Engines
Surprisingly, Schema does not influence website rankings. Instead, it influences the ‘rich results’ in search queries. Rich results are elements that appear in position 0 in the search engine results pages, right at the top.
Google pulls information out of websites and showcases them in these rich results when relevant. But to do this, it has to first understand what the information on your website means.
By marking up the content properties of your pages, you make them eligible for inclusion in rich results. These rich results are especially important for local SEO as they can help local businesses to get their contact number, opening hours, and address listed.
Structured data can also help to boost your SEO and improve your rankings indirectly. Marking up your content makes your page look more attractive in the search results pages. Even though structured data might not be a ranking factor, click-through rates and dwell time certainly are.
Working of Schema
Structured data is built on HTML code, which Google reads to understand the content on your website. What’s more, you don’t need to know coding to use this tool! Google, Bing, and Yahoo have collaborated to create a free tool for all users, Schema.org.
You can use it in a series of easy steps.
- Visit schema.org
- Select the type of content you want to markup
- Paste in the content page URL and click ‘start tagging’
- Highlight the text you want to markup (or ‘label’) in the interface, then click the tag you want to add. For example, you can highlight the author’s name and click ‘author’. Keep adding markup items until you’re finished
- Click ‘create HTML’
- Copy and paste the HTML code into your CMS post/page source code
The Fundamentals of Technical SEO Auditing
To properly check under the hood of your website, there are some technical SEO fundamentals to get you started. This will allow you to quickly and easily optimize the technical side of your site and will help you to detect any errors or issues.
Audit your Preferred Domain
You need to define your preferred domain since websites that have duplicate content pages with multiple domains are being punished.
You need to set up your preferred domain so that the crawlers will only detect one of these URLs, the one with the www prefix or the one without. You can do this in your .htaccess file by adding code that sets your preferred domain.
Data security has never been more paramount than in the modern day. As a result, search engines like Google favours websites that take proactive steps to protect sensitive data from the threat of outside intrusion and theft.
SSL stands for Secure Sockets Layer, and it is the standard technology that websites can use to protect sensitive information being sent between two different sources.
You can install an SSL certificate on your website to ensure that you cater to google’s standards. Moreover, most web pages include SSL by default.
Optimize your page speed
Optimizing your page speed is important for the user experience as well as for search engine crawlers and indexers that favour optimized websites. A slow-running website is usually attributed to slow server speed or images and videos that have not been optimized.
Each checklist demands a different type of optimization to produce efficient results. Let’s take a look at the checklists for tech SEO and the fundamentals of each.
This checklist is important for search engines to find relevant content from your site and display it to the user. As a result, it requires some important steps.
Create an XML Sitemap
In simple terms, this is a list of all of the different pages and URLs your own website has. All you have to do is create your XML sitemap, add it to your website and submit it to Google.
In addition, this method is one of the fastest ways to organically improve your Google search rankings.
Maximize your Crawl Budget
The crawl budget is the number of pages that Google will crawl on your site per day. Most of the time, Google will automatically crawl your site structure the appropriate amount of times.
However, if the number of pages you have exceeds your crawl budget, then there are going to be pages that are not crawled or indexed. As a result, these pages will be invisible.
Optimize your Site Architecture
When you structure your website properly, it makes it easier for crawlers to do their job. Ultimately, you are likely to have better results in search engine rankings. You will also have the added benefits of having a site that is easier to use and more functional for your visitors.
Further, keep the structure of your site simple and easy to navigate.
Set a URL structure
The actual URLs of your website are important as well because this is another way that search engine crawlers will map your page. It is important to focus on your URL because this is how Google is going to put your link in front of the right people.
You should make your URL structure easy to navigate for users. Further, the URL structure should follow a path, like www. business/services/service1, for example.
Pagination is basically the process of dividing sections of your website up to make it easier for users to consume. This allows you to be very specific and is very useful for e-commerce websites so you can direct searchers to the relevant product.
Check your SEO Log Files
There is precious data in your SEO log files. It includes whether your page(s) have been crawled or indexed, your crawl budget as well as specific technical errors. This allows you to address them on the fly and improve your SEO.
Next, it is time to audit your indexability to ensure you are sitting where you want to be when it comes to search engine rankings. Follow these steps to ensure the best position on the index pages.
Unblock Search Bots from Accessing Pages
It is relatively common for sites that you do want to be indexed to be accidentally blocked as well. Check through your CMS and ensure all of the pages you want to be crawled are not blocking search bots.
Audit your Redirects
Server redirects can slow down your website, lead to broken links and 404 errors, and hurt your SEO as well. There are many useful tools available that will do redirect audits for you.
Check the Compatibility with Mobile Devices
An increasing number of people are using mobile devices to conduct internet searches than desktop or laptop devices. It is absolutely essential that your site is mobile-optimized so that search engines can deliver valuable mobile traffic.
Fix HTTP Errors
These are errors sent from the server, and they are a big frustration for visitors to your website. If they are met with broken links or an error, they are almost certain to go somewhere else. Moreover, Google will favour sites that do not have HTTP errors like dead links as well.
How your website renders or loads for users is critical for your SEO agency Melboourne. It needs to be fast and seamless, or it is going to make for a frustrating experience and influence users to check out other sites.
Here are a few steps to optimize your website’s speed.
This will give you reports on your server and its performance. Server performance includes data on whether you need to change your website activities or upgrade your server’s capabilities. It also gives you warning signs if there are any abnormalities or malicious activities.
The presence of HTTP status codes on your website indicates that something is not working properly. The emergence of redirect, client error, or server error codes can be major problems. Essentially, they need to be addressed quickly.
Load time and page size
Check your site loading speed regularly and also run assessments on all of the assets on your pages. A slow-loading website has a double negative effect because it is not favoured by Google and other search engines, in addition to being frustrating.
The technical SEO strategies will directly impact where you are indexed and ranked in searches. This allows it to appear close to the top, as organically as possible.
Internal and External Links
Internal links help users navigate their way easily through your site structure. In addition, they provide the same experience for crawlers to assist with your SEO Canberra. External links will also help improve your domain authority score.
Writing unique, thought-inspiring, relevant content will provide a huge boost to your Google ranking. Content clusters are a way to boost and improve your content strategy by using topic modelling and internal linking.
Content clusters guide users through your articles or other content and move them to more relevant content. It allows you to link multiple pieces of content that fall under one topic matter. This in turn will deliver a complete experience to your users.
Backlinks are the real ranking juice, and this should be a priority. Get as many reputable backlinks as you can from large, well-established sites with high traffic and Google search will reward you.
Once you have achieved a high search engine ranking, you want to ensure that you are getting a high click-through rate. Follow the listed steps for the same.
Use Structured Data
Providing the crawlers with structured data and rich snippets gives them hyper-specific information about your website. This allows Google to present your page in the most attractive light.
Win SERP Features
Upon conducting a search, you will notice standard results along with other information on the homepage. Some of these features are paid products, while others are organic SERP features that can help you stand out.
Some of the things you can do are:
- Create content that directly answers common questions
- Ensure the targeted query is in the heading and subheadings
- Use bullet points
- Include tables and lists
- Include alt tags for your images
- Implement the target query in your video titles
While this list is long and it may sound exhausting, it will quickly become common practice. Just like servicing your car, auditing the technical side of your website will become second nature when done repeatedly.
Eventually, all your hard work will pay off to higher rankings on Google, better visibility to your target audience, and an improved click-through rate. Ultimately, you will succeed in providing the best experience to the users visiting your website.