Don’t Forget About Technical SEO
Most of the articles and information you come across about SEO tend to focus on the marketing piece of it: website navigation, keyword research, keyword incorporation, content marketing, link building, and social media. What doesn’t seem to get as much attention, even though they are equally important, are technical SEO items. Essentially, you can completely optimize your website, write great content, and build great links but it will all have less of an impact if the website isn’t technically sound, since this is something that Google (and the other search engines) are paying attention to, as well. Here is a technical SEO checklist:
Sign up for Google Search Console
While Google Analytics is the free tool that shows you traffic data, Google Search Console is its partner tool (also free) that shows you how your website is performing from a technical standpoint. To keep things simple, it’s advisable to use the same Google log in for both Analytics and Search Console so that you can see both dashboards at once.
Submit your sitemap
As the Google search spiders crawl the web, they’re going to eventually find your website and index it, but submitting your sitemap in GSC can speed up the process and it ensures that Google is also seeing when you add new pages of content to the website. This way, you can also check to make sure Google is crawling and indexing all of the pages it should be. If there’s a large discrepancy between pages submitted and those indexed, you’ll have to fix the sitemap and re-submit it.
Fix crawl errors
GSC will outline if your website has any crawl errors. For the most part, they won’t harm your SEO campaign, but it’s still in your best interest to take care of these errors and fix the links or re-direct the pages to an active, related page on your website.
Keep an eye out for security issues
Website security issues are big problems all around, and this includes negatively impacting an SEO campaign. If a website has security issues, Google will take note and even include a warning directly in the search results that potential visitors will see. This means that traffic will take a hit and could mean lost revenue. As a website owner, it’s important to do what you can to avoid security issues (keep your CMS up to date, invest in good hosting, pay for security monitoring). If an issue does occur and Google spots it before you notice it or are able to fix it, it will alert you in Google Search Console.
Fix a long load time
Google wants its users to land on the best possible website and have a good experience. A website that loads slowly isn’t providing a good user experience, and rank can be negatively impacted. Check on your website’s speed regularly. Some helpful tools to use are Pingdom and GT Metrix.
Invest in mobile
Every website needs to be mobile friendly today. The majority of Google searches are done on mobile devices which is why Google is moving to a mobile-first index, which means that the mobile version of a website is what will be ranked, even on a desktop. Google Search Console will alert you to any mobile usability issues on the website.
SEO is really comprised of 2 parts: the marketing side of SEO and the technical side of SEO. If you don’t consider yourself tech-savvy, it’s worthwhile to work with a partner that is.
Categorized in: SEO
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