Guide to SEO - Technical SEO

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Technical SEO is a vast and deep discipline. Technical SEO just means making a few tweaks to your website and server to help search engines find and index your site more easily, which can give your rankings a little boost. In this blog, we will cover many important structural fundamentals.

Below is a checklist of important steps you can take to make sure your technical SEO is on point. These guidelines will help you make sure that the search engine algorithms will see your site as secure and well-structured, and you'll be rewarded with higher search rankings.

Use SSL

If you're looking to see if a website is secure, one way to tell is by the URL. If it starts with "https://" instead of "http://", then the site is using SSL or Secure Sockets Layer. In 2014, Google announced that they're going to start giving preference to HTTPS sites in their search results.

It's always a good idea to make sure your website is secure, and you can do this by installing an SSL certificate. Most top website builders include SSL by default, so you shouldn't have any trouble.

Responsive, mobile friendly site

Websites that automatically adjust to the user's device are called responsive websites. This is great news for users because it makes navigation and reading much easier. Google has stated that responsive sites are ranked very highly on their algorithms. With Google's new mobile first approach to indexing content, responsive websites are more important than ever.

So ensure your website is responsive and mobile friendly.

Speed

Pages should be accessible to crawlers and should load fast. Speed is not only good because of technical SEO, it also enhances your user experience. Pagespeed is regarded as an important ranking factor.

  • You can speed up your site in many different ways:
  • Use a fast DNS
  • Use fast hosting
  • Keep the use of plugins and scripts minimum
  • Use a single CSS stylesheet, instead of multiple or inline.
  • Ensure optimal image sizes
  • Compress your webpages
  • Keep your site code minimum

Remove duplicate content

Although it might not be immediately clear, duplicate content can actually be bad for both users and search engine algorithms. If you come across any on your website, it's best to try and fix the issue.

You can tackle duplicate content by:

  • Preventing your CMS from publishing multiple versions of a page or post, like by disabling Session IDs where they're not vital to the functionality of your website, and getting rid of printer-friendly versions of your content. 
  • The canonical link element is a great way to let search engines know where the primary version of your content is located.

Sitemaps

XML sitemaps are files that help search engines understand the structure of your website. It's like a search roadmap that tells search engines where each page is on your site.

The sitemap also includes useful information about each page, like when it was last modified, how important it is to your site, and how often it's updated.

Enable AMP

AMP is a Google-backed project with the goal of faster content delivery on mobile devices through a code known as AMP HTML.

AMP versions of web pages load quickly on mobile devices due to stripped content and code, leaving text, images and video intact but disabling scripts, comments and forms.

AMP pages load faster, so your users are more likely to read and share them. This increases dwell time and the number of backlinks pointing to your content, which are both good things from an SEO perspective. Plus, Google sometimes highlights AMP pages in prominent carousels in search results, giving you a major search boost.

Add structured data markups

If you're looking to improve your website's performance in search results, consider implementing structured data markup. This code helps search engines better understand the content on your site, which can lead to more relevant results. Additionally, structured data can enhance your search results with features like star ratings, prices, and reviewer information.

If you enhance your results to make them more appealing and highlight immediately useful information, you're more likely to get clicks (and traffic!). Plus, search engines usually prefer sites with higher click-through rates, so it's worth taking the time to add structured data to your site.

Register your site with Google Search Console 

There are two free tools, Google Search Console and Bing Webmaster Tools, that let you submit your website to their search engines. This allows the search engine to find and index your site.

When you're ready to launch your website, be sure to submit its XML sitemap to both Google Search Console and Bing Webmaster Tools. That way, these search engines will crawl your site and start displaying results from it in SERPs.

You can also keep an eye on the overall performance of your site from a search engine perspective. Other things you can do with the tools include: testing your site’s mobile usability, accessing search analytics, viewing backlinks to your site, disavowing spammy links, and much more.

By following these technical SEO tips, you can help ensure that your site is easy to find and that your content is ranking high in the search results.

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