A truly effective SEO strategy includes all of these strategies, plus regular optimization to ensure consistent returns.
This post dives deep into technical SEO and how you can use it to increase organic traffic, show up in search, and improve your overall site experience.
What Is Technical SEO?
Technical SEO is an area of SEO that covers optimizations that improve search engine ranking by making your site easier for search engines to crawl. For example, improving site load time, checking robot.txt files, and making redirects work properly.
Essentially, it’s the process of ensuring your website can be seen, crawled, and ranked by search engines.
Search engines, such as Google, give preference to websites that meet their webmaster guidelines. The basic principles state your website content should be accurate, easy to access, and user-friendly.
If your website loads slowly, has an unresponsive design, or lacks a secure connection, your content will not meet these guidelines.
This is where technical SEO comes in, as it can help you improve the technical characteristics of your website to improve organic traffic.
Why Is Technical SEO Important?
Imagine you wrote the most amazing content in the world. It’s content that everyone should read.
People would pay buckets of money just to read it. Millions are eagerly waiting for the notification that you’ve posted this new, incredible content.
Then, the day finally comes, and the notification goes out. Customers excitedly click the link to read your article.
Then, it takes over 10 seconds for your web page to load. Readers are annoyed and they don’t want to wait.
It boils down to this—if your site doesn’t perform well on mobile devices, you are not just losing traffic; your site also looks bad to Google. That can result in lower rankings, and even less traffic.
How to Perform a Technical SEO Audit
SEO guidelines are constantly changing. Every time a major search engine significantly updates its algorithm, SEO has to adapt.
The good news is the frequency of changes in technical SEO tends to be lower.
After all, it’s not like search engines or readers will suddenly decide they’re okay with slower speeds.
If anything, you will see the average acceptable speed continue to drop. Your site simply has to be faster if you want to keep up with SEO demands.
Your website has to be mobile-friendly. This is only going to become more important over time, too.
It has to work without errors, duplicate content, and poor images.
Search engines also have to be able to crawl it successfully.
These things are all crucial to your success on search engines and site visitors. If you want to prioritize your SEO efforts, make sure you tackle the technical aspects first.
Before you do anything else, start a crawl of your website. You can use Ubersuggest to make it a simple process. Here’s how you do it:
Step 1: Enter your URL and click “Search.”
Step 2: Click “Site Audit” in the left sidebar.
Step 3: Run the scan. Upon completion, you’ll see this:
Crawling is useful for identifying problems such as duplicate content, low word count, unlinked pagination pages, and excess redirects. Ubersuggest will even rank issues in order of importance, so you can focus on what matters most.
If you find anything here, click on it for more information and advice on how to fix it. For example, our website has 32 pages with a low word count.
You can then review these pages to determine if you need to add more content.
What does this all mean?
In short, it gives you a glimpse into how the Googlebot is crawling your site.
If you don’t use Ubersuggest for your technical SEO audit, you can also search your site manually. We’ll explain that below.
2. Perform a Manual Google Search
A few Google searches can tell you approximately how well your website is ranking. This will help you figure out where to start your technical SEO audit.
How many of your pages appear in relevant search results?
Does your site appear first when you search for it by name?
Overall, where does your site appear in the results?
To figure out which pages are actually being crawled, you can use a “site:rootdomain” search to see what shows up.
Here’s what this looks like in action:
Missing pages don’t automatically mean that your site is un-crawlable, but it’s useful to understand what’s happening behind the scenes.
Your website doesn’t need to be at the very top of your searches, either. By using the site search, it will show you only pages on your own site.
3. Make Sure Only One Version of Your Site Is Browseable
If your website has multiple “versions” of itself, you send search engines a mixed message about how to crawl your site.
Basically, the crawlers don’t know which one is the right one.
If search engines don’t even know how to show your site to prospective traffic, your site’s SEO ranking will be negatively impacted.
Essentially, you want to make sure the placement of pages makes sense—all your service pages should be under your “services” tab, for example. Make sure users don’t have to click through four levels of pages to find best-selling products. The goal is to make it easy for Google —and users—to find the information or products they are looking for.
Every page on your site should have a focus keyword included in the first 100 words.