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There are typically three different types of SEO to focus on: technical, on-page, and off-page. Most clients understand on-page and off-page SEO because they can physically see these at work on their website in terms of what keywords and other recommendations are made to help improve organic traffic. However, it can be more difficult for clients to recognize the importance of technical SEO. Here's a quick guide that delves into what technical SEO is and how a Digital Marketing Agency looks to optimize a site.
What is Technical SEO?
Technical SEO deals with maintaining a site's structure with search engine guidelines, search engine crawling, indexation, and rankings. These can be implemented and configured by the server and the website.
There are a few factors that come into play when talking technical SEO:
- Timing – The best time to work on technical issues would be during a website redesign, quarterly site audits, or major changes to the site
- Google algorithm updates – Google's algorithm changes daily and always need to be kept in the loop on industry changes
How is Technical SEO Being Used?
There are a few factors we consider when we look at an existing site's health for a technical audit or when build a new site. These include:
Looking at the site, we want to make sure that all pages and URLs are structured properly. When a site grows, we don't want to lose pages or have them structured on top of older ones. We want search engines to regularly crawl, cache, and index pages to your site.
There are several factors involved in the optimization of site architecture, such as:
- Formatting URLs to make sure they are easy to read/understand and relevant to the information on that page
- Appropriate use of subdomains
- Creating a sitemap to make sure that search engines can crawl the site
- Setting up Robots.txt if one isn't in place to block search engines from crawling certain pages and files
Canonicalization or a canonical tag is another way to tell search engines that a URL serves as the master copy of a page. Using the canonical tag helps prevent issues caused by "duplicate" content showing up on multiple URLs throughout the site.
Search engines are starting to consider page speed as a higher factor of importance when it comes rankings and page optimization.There are plenty of available tools that can help identify issues that can lower page.
Some methods that can help improve page speed include:
- Reducing image sizes
- Leveraging browser caching by setting an expiration date or a maximum age in the HTTP headers
- Reducing server response time
Broken links are a major factor in search engines, and these should be dealt with as soon as possible.
Reasons for broken links include:
- Changing from HTTP to HTTPS and not creating proper redirects
- Renaming pages, which can change the page URL structure
- Moving pages on the site
- Forgetting to update internal and external links
It's important that you keep up with technical SEO and maintain a well-executed site. Search engines are always updating and changing their algorithms, and sites need to stay on top of these trends.
Aztek can perform a technical SEO audit on your site to see if there are any opportunities for improvement. Contact us online or call us at 216-472-2121.