Though all the SEO basics we have talked about so far are what most people think when you talk of what is SEO, they are not the only factors that come into play. When implementing a complete SEO strategy you cannot ignore the technical aspects that affect SEO in general and your website in particular.
The technical side of SEO is not as glamorous as the rest but that does not make it any less important, they’re often quite traditional tasks that are sometimes overlooked but have the potential to make a whole lot of difference when properly executed.
Technical SEO is a whole discipline of its own but when you take time to understand how it works, you gain an extra edge over most sites. These are some of the main things technical SEO can help you optimize and how they affect overall website performance and ranking.
Page Speed and Optimization for Mobile
What is SEO without page speed?
When users and search engines can navigate your pages smoothly it works in your favor. No one wants to stay on a page that takes minutes to load or with images that take time to appear. That’s the surest way to kill conversions and audience retention.
To help with this Google recommends a couple of tools you can use to increase website speed and load time. Mobile Friendliness is another aspect we cannot overemphasize, recently Google has been paying special attention to content that is mobile friendly.
Google announced that their algorithm now gives priority to websites that are optimized for mobile. Moreover, if the algorithm notices that your content drives more traffic from mobile users than desktop users, they will push your content to the forefront.
Google offers guidelines on how to make your website mobile-friendly, that’s a good place to start technical SEO for beginners.
Probably the most technical part in SEO, header response has to do with codes websites transmit to search engines. For example, code 404 signals page error which means the page could not be found.
Most often when Google says 404 “Page Not Found” it doesn’t mean the page does not exist, it might have simply been indexed wrongly which is often a result of the use of wrong codes. So, make sure you double-check each page on your website’s header code.
To avoid 404s and other unpleasant issues involving response codes, it is recommended to use a Server Header Checker to make sure you have all the right codes installed on the page headers of your website.
As per Google guidelines you should try as much as possible to avoid URL redirects. When you redirect your already indexed and ranked website to a new URL let’s say from an example.com/page to an example.html/page it might lead to broken links.
And if for some obscure reason you can’t help but redirect your page, it is recommended you let Google know. This can be done by implementing the 301 or 302 codes which respectively signify permanent and temporary redirects. Unreported redirects do not only leave a trail of broken links, they confuse search engines, disrupt traffic flow and user experience.
Duplicated content refers to putting identical or nearly the same content on multiple websites to manipulate search engines. Google specifically warns against duplicated content, saying it will be considered link equity diluting and automatically translates as lower-quality content to be manipulative.
It is recommended you run a diagnosis on your site to fish out and eliminate any kind of repetitive content. This also applies to your anchor texts, make sure they are unique and provide some kind of value.
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