The race for higher rankings on Google’s first-page search results is a continuous game, so every marketer wants to take their SEO strategies up a notch frequently.
If applied well, some basic knowledge about the more technical side of SEO can often mean the difference between a high ranking site and a site that doesn’t rank at all. But what elements of technical SEO are the deciding factors of a successful website? Before we go into the elements, let’s take a look at what technical SEO is and what it does for your website.
What is Technical SEO?
Technical SEO implies optimizing your website by improving its technical aspects. This is done to help search engines understand your site content and possibly increase search engine ranking.
Technical SEO is part of on-page SEO, which focuses on improving elements on your website to get higher rankings.
Why is Technical SEO Important?
You apply SEO techniques to your digital marketing strategy primarily to drive traffic and earn money. Improving the website user experience (UX) will help you accomplish your objectives.
Technical SEO is not only there for search engine optimization but also to improve marketing tactics to boost your SEO goals. You need more working marketing tactics to succeed. But an on-point technical SEO makes everything else easier for you to handle.
Many marketers believe that they should focus on the technical details of a website just to please search engines. A website should be fast, clear, and easy to use for your users in the first place. Fortunately, creating a strong technical foundation for your website often coincides with a better experience for both users and search engines.
Now let’s take a look at some important aspects of Technical SEO.
Nowadays, there is no let-off for having a slow website. Most people on the internet are impatient and don’t have time to wait for a page to open. Research by Marketingdive shows that 53% of mobile website visitors will leave if a webpage doesn’t open within three seconds. Such a short time!
If your website is slow, people are more likely to get frustrated waiting for content to load. They’ll eventually move on to another website that will load faster, and you’ll miss out on all that traffic.
Even Google Search Console picks up blogs with good website speed for ranking. Search engines know that slow web pages offer a less than optimal experience. So, a slow web page also ends up further down the search results than its faster equivalent, resulting in even less traffic.
If the bounce rate of your blog or website is high due to slow loading time, it can create a negative impact on the ranking as well. Imagine all the time you have spent creating that sumptuous piece of content, just to be let down by your site speed. It’s definitely not worth it.
Search Engine Crawlability
Search engines use robots to crawl or spider your website before they index it. Web crawlers usually draw on XML sitemaps to identify the web pages that should be indexed. Failing to keep a tidy sitemap makes it harder for crawlers to reach all pages on your website.
Search engines don’t rank web pages that they cannot access. A great internal linking structure will make sure that they’ll understand what the most important content on your site is. If the search bots are unable to crawl and find your website, then you must check for crawl errors. They create trouble for the site in its appearance on the SERP.
These technical errors mean that the audience might be unable to reach your website. Additionally, if there are any crawl errors, a user who typed a search query cannot find the information on the search results.
No Duplicated Content
Having the same content on multiple pages or other sites leaves search engines confused. If these pages show the same content, which one should they rank highest? As a result, sites with duplicated content might be ranked lower.
Unfortunately, sometimes you might have an issue with duplicate content without your knowledge. Due to technical reasons, different URLs can end up showing the same content. For a visitor, this doesn’t make any difference, but for search engines it does. They’ll see the same content on a different URL.
Luckily, the technical solution to this issue is readily available. With the so-called canonical link element, you can indicate what the original page or the page you’d like to rank in the search engines is.
And, to make it easy for you, self-referencing canonical links to all your pages are always a welcome boost. This will help prevent duplicate content issues that you’d might not even be aware of.
One critical ingredient in Google ranking is website security. HTTPS is the etiquette where information goes through web browsers and websites securely. The HTTPS protocol is designed to protect web users from man-in-the-middle attacks.
It makes sure that no one can intercept the data that’s sent between the browser and the site and acquire the information for any purpose. This means that if people must log in to your site, their credentials are safe. To implement HTTPS on your site, you’ll need an SSL certificate.
Google is committed to protecting its users, this is why it made HTTPS a ranking signal. As you can imagine, secure websites rank higher than unsafe equivalents.
But how can you check if your website is HTTPS in most browsers? It’s easy, on the left-hand side of your browser’s search bar, you’ll see a lock if it’s safe. If it’s not safe, you’ll see the words “not secure.” This means that you and your developer have some work to do!
Generally, a technically optimized website is a secure website.
Meta Descriptions and Tags
Metadata is an important structural consideration and it also affects how crawlers interpret your webpage. A meta description makes it clear to a crawler what the title and content of a page are, along with what description should be displayed alongside the link to your site.
Optimizing title tags, Meta tags, and Meta descriptions for SEO is the key to success if you want to make your SEO strategy effective. Thorough keyword research and strategic placement of the keywords help in optimizing the meta description and tags.
Generally, search engines are continually evolving. At clickslice, we are devoted to keeping you up to date with all aspects of technical SEO so that your website is not left behind in top search engine results.