Technical search engine optimization (SEO) is a term that has been around for a while but is still extremely important today. It is a process of optimizing website code and its metadata for search engines and other digital platforms.
Technical SEO is an essential aspect of website optimization, but it requires technical knowledge to execute.
Before we go into the tips listed below, let’s answer a few basic questions about technical SEO.
What Is Technical SEO?
Technical SEO is a specialized form of search engine optimization that focuses on the technical aspects of websites. Technical SEO factors include website speed, page loading time, server speed, site architecture, etc.
However, it’s not just about optimizing your website for search engines. It’s also about making sure your website works well for visitors. If a visitor has to wait too long for a page to load or if they have to struggle with navigation, they’re going to leave the site and go somewhere else.
Optimizing your site can be achieved using tools like SEMrush, Ahrefs, Google Search Console, and so on.
Why Is Technical SEO So Important?
Technical SEO is important because it helps companies rank higher in search engine results pages (SERPs). It also improves the user experience on your site. This can help you attract more visitors, increase engagement with your content, and ultimately generate more revenue by improving conversions on your site.
1. Make Your Site Speedy and Mobile-friendly
When it comes to speed, the most critical thing is hosting. If your website is slow, it will be ranked lower than those with fast hosting.
You can’t have fast loading speeds with a slow hosting service.
Technical SEO is all about optimizing your site for speed and performance. This includes DNS settings, CSS stylesheet, and many other factors that affect the speed of your site.
A CSS stylesheet is a file that contains CSS rules for HTML elements that are used to style web pages. It can also create a more customized look and feel for a website design.
Additionally, businesses need to ensure that their website can be viewed on these devices.
With the increasing popularity of smartphones and tablets, the need for responsive websites is mushrooming. A responsive website design ensures that your website will display correctly on all screens and work seamlessly across devices.
Mobile-friendly design is not just about making your website responsive. It is also about making it easy to navigate and read on a mobile device. This means that the site should be designed for smaller screen sizes and simpler navigation structures.
2. Use Google Search Console to Fix Crawl Errors
Google Search Console is an excellent tool for technical SEO. It helps identify problems with your website and provides solutions to fix them.
If you want to improve your technical SEO, follow these tips:
- Make sure that the URLs on your site are correct and not broken
- Use structured data markup (see below) to help Google understand what you are trying to do
- Use the cache busting function in Google Search Console to make sure that pages load faster
- Add a sitemap with all of your pages to help search engines crawl them better
Broken links on your website primarily cause crawl errors. When Google crawls your site, it will find broken links and stop indexing them.
The following are some common technical SEO mistakes that can be fixed with Google Search Console:
- Broken links
- Unused images
- Duplicate content
- Broken CSS files
3. Clear Navigation Links and Descriptions
A website’s navigation is one of the most important aspects of a site’s design and content. Unfortunately, the navigation can be difficult for users to find, and it can also be confusing for search engines to crawl.
Navigation should be clear, concise, intuitive, and easy for users to understand. It should also be indexed by search engines so that they can easily find the content they are looking for.
The first step to creating straightforward website navigation is by having a structured and logical website layout.
The second step would be to use text descriptions of each page and link them together with relevant keywords to build strong domain authority.
4. Easy Indexing: XML Sitemap, Robots.txt, and Meta Tags
A sitemap is a list of the URLs of your website and the pages found on that website. It helps search engines understand your website’s structure and index it properly.
An XML sitemap is a file that helps search engines crawl and index your website. It contains URLs for all the pages on your site and information about each page, including title, description, and keywords.
To ensure that your site doesn’t get penalized by search engines due to technical SEO issues, it is crucial to have an XML sitemap for your website.
The robots.txt file is another important file. It tells search engine crawlers what they can do on a given website’s server and what they are not allowed to do.
Meta tags are used to describe the content and make it more attractive to search engines. In addition, they help define a website’s target audience, which is why they are so important for businesses.
Webmasters and site owners also use Meta tags to improve their rankings in search engines.
However, meta tags are not just used to rank websites on search engines. They are also used to improve the user experience of the website.
5. Include Keywords in Page URLs
The SEO industry has adapted to these changes by including keywords in the URL of all pages on a website. These keywords allow search engines like Google and Bing to rank these pages higher in their search results.
Additionally, keywords are used to avoid duplicate content issues, especially when you have a lot of pages on your site. Keywords in URLs also help with internal linking, which can help improve the overall ranking of your website.
When using keywords in URLs, remember that they should be close to the end of the URL without any spaces before them.
6. Conduct a Weekly Technical SEO Audit
A technical SEO audit is a process of evaluating the website’s technical performance from the perspective of search engines.
The audit process helps determine the health of a website’s SEO. It can help identify any problems with the website, such as duplicate content or broken links. It also helps identify any changes that need to be made to improve SEO metrics, such as updating meta descriptions or title tags.
- Technical SEO Audit Step 1: Review the site’s source code for errors and potential problems that could cause harmful effects on SEO metrics. This includes checking for broken links and duplicate content issues and reviewing the internal linking structure, meta descriptions, title tags, etc.
- Technical SEO Audit Step 2: Check the site for proper canonicalization of URLs and ensure that keywords are not repeated in titles or meta descriptions. This includes going over everything from the home page to individual product pages to ensure content is grouped correctly by its subject matter.
- Technical SEO Audit Step 3: Do a full crawl of all products on the site to ensure that content is indexed correctly and optimized for search engines.
7. Employ SSL and HTTPS Security Measures
There are a lot of misconceptions about the security of HTTPS, SSL, and data encryption. The truth is that they provide a much safer and more secure way to send and receive information online and boost your site’s potential ranking.
HTTPS is an acronym for Hypertext Transfer Protocol Secure. It is a protocol that uses encryption to send data securely over the internet. For example, when you type in https://www.example.com into your browser, it will encrypt the website’s address so that no one can see it or hack into it without your permission.
SSL stands for Secure Sockets Layer and is an encryption technology for transmitting data across a network like the internet or intranet. It provides a secure connection between two parties where one party can send information while ensuring that no one else can intercept it during transmission.
HTTPS vs. SSL
HTTPS encrypts the traffic between the user’s browser and the website, while SSL encrypts the traffic between the user and their bank or credit card company. These technologies have become more prevalent in recent years as cybercriminals have been using them to steal information from users.
HTTPS also helps with other technical SEO factors like speed, load time, server response time, and browser compatibility.
With these protocols, they can also ensure the authenticity of their website’s domain name, which will increase its trustworthiness in search results.
8. Optimize Headings and Meta Descriptions
Titles and headings are two of the most essential elements in search engine optimization. They help communicate the content of a webpage, especially when it comes to technical SEO.
The title tag is one of the most critical parts of a webpage’s SEO. It helps search engines understand what your page is about and what keywords it’s relevant for. On the other hand, the meta description helps users find your page by telling them what they can expect when they click on your link.
Title tags are usually written in H1 tags and should be specific to their respective section on a given website. H2 Headings should be used for headers with sub-sections that need to be distinguished from each other to make them easier for readers to navigate through your website.
9. Avoid Duplicate Content: Canonical Tags
Canonical tags are used to prevent duplicate content and images on your website. Canonical tags are also known as the “canonical URL.” They tell search engines which page to show when they find a web page that matches a search query.
Canonical tags are crucial to SEO. They help the search engine bots find and index the original content. If you have duplicate content on your website, you should use canonical tags to make sure that the search engines list it as a separate entity.
10. Compress Images and Add Alt Text
An image that is too large can slow down the loading time of a webpage. It is important to compress the image size using compression tools like TinyPNG.
Image compression has recently been implemented on a broader scale. This is due to the increased use of mobile devices and the need for responsive websites.
The first step in optimizing an image is to identify what kind of image and what type of compression you need to apply. If you’re unsure, you should consult with your webmaster or graphic designer before attempting any changes.
The alt text is an important part of the image for technical SEO purposes. It is the text that shows up when a user hovers over a picture, and it can be used to provide more information about the image, such as its size, the date it was taken, or where it was taken.
The alt text should be descriptive enough to convey what’s going on in the image. It should also be concise and contain keywords relevant to your site. If you’re unsure what keywords to use, try using your site’s main keyword or a few related keywords.
Bonus Tip: Hreflang Tags
Hreflang is a code that can be used in the website’s HTML or the HTTP headers. It can be used to help international websites rank on Google by creating a better experience for users who speak another language.
For this reason, hreflang tags are recognized by search engines and help improve a website’s rank.
Is Technical SEO Difficult?
Technical SEO is an essential part of the SEO process, but it is not always easy. It requires a lot of expertise and knowledge of the industry, so companies might hire a professional if they need help with their technical SEO problems.
Here are some situations that may mean it’s time to call in a professional:
- The company needs to rank for highly competitive terms
- The company has a website with high bounce rates or low conversion rates
- The website needs more than one technical SEO fix at once, but no time to fix and wait for organic results.
The best way to find the right company for your needs is by researching your own and asking around in your community or industry.