As many of us know, SEO is a vast field that covers hundreds of elements, with all of these elements each containing various levels of importance when it comes to organic rankings on Google and the other, far less used, search engines.
It is well known the importance of keyword density, the quality of copy used within your webpages and having a strong backlink profile. However, there are a number of technical elements that are far less known, so take a look at our top 5 technical SEO tips below, which should help you to understand SEO a bit more and, all being well, provide some useful insight into your campaign going forward.
Case Sensitivity is Important:
It is great that you have a Google Sitemap file, which has also been submitted through your Search Console account, but if the file contains URLs that fail to match up perfectly to your live webpages then you will be suffering an SEO nightmare. For example, your ‘About Us’ page might contain the ‘www.mysite.com/about-us‘ URL but, if your sitemap contains the following URL – ‘www.mysite.com/About-Us‘ then Google will see this as a broken link, which can hinder your organic progress.
Disallowing Pages That Offer No SEO Values Will Improve Crawl Budget:
To help improve your site’s crawl budget, as well as your overall keyword density level, it is possible to disallow pages that provide no SEO value. So, if your site contains a high number of low-value pages, such as Privacy Policies and ‘Help’ pages, you might want to disallow these so that Google is more likely to crawl your high value pages more frequently, as this will help to produce a more effective SEO performance.
What is a crawl budget you might ask? Well, it relates to the maximum number of pages that Google can crawl on a website in one go. So, ensuring that Google only crawls your most important pages is highly beneficial.
You can check your crawl budget through your Google Search Console account.
HTTPS is Taking Over:
Google takes security extremely seriously, which is why they have started to provide websites that are HTTPS with an increased preference within their organic search results. This has led to, according to research, over half the websites that appear on page one of Google being HTTPS rather than HTTP. So, if your site is not already secure then it is something worth considering in the future, especially as this is way that things are going at present.
Thinking of having a new website? If so, it is vital that any URLs that are being updated/removed from your old site have 301 redirects place upon them, as this will ensure that the online history and organic rankings that the page has achieved will not get lost along the way.
We’ve lost track at the number of times that webmasters have updated their site and failed to use 301 redirects, and this has led to organic decreases being suffered on the search engines, whilst backlinks that they had previously gained into their old pages were no longer offering any value due to those pages/URLs no longer existing.
In short, placing a 301 redirect on an old URL will inform the search engines that the page still exists but it has been moved to a new location. So, for example, if your ‘Products’ page moved from ‘www.mysite.com/Products’ to ‘www.mysite.com/BuyProducts’, the 301 redirects will tell Google that the page is still live but has simply moved to a different URL. If anyone tries to visit the old URL then they are immediately redirected into the new page. This will help retain your organic rankings, retain visitors and, in general, enable your website to continue to run effectively.
Page Speed is Important:
We have all attempted to visit a website only to become frustrated with how slowly the page takes to load, and it only ends one way. We go elsewhere instead. So, it is clear that having a fast loading website is essential to help achieve online success, not just in terms of organic ranking but only by offering a superior user-experience.
Ideally, you want your webpages to be loading around 2-4 seconds, and you can check your current desktop and mobile speeds by using Google’s PageSpeed Insights Tool, whilst the search giants have also recently released a new, mobile-focused tool, which you can access here. This tool offers a good level of performance insight, including your speed on a 3G connection and much more.
So, that concludes our top 5 SEO technical tips. Of course, we could go on but, as there are literally hundreds of different SEO related elements that Google analyses then we would be here all day if we covered them all.