SEO efforts are often divided in two categories, namely on-page SEO and off-page SEO. On-page deals with the content and page optimization, whereas off-page is concerned with establishing site-to-site relations. Many believe that both of these come together to make the SEO spectrum complete, but there is something else that you should know about. It is called Technical SEO, which is the next big thing in SEO.
What does technical SEO mean?
There are many questions that even the experts ask about technical SEO as it is a comparatively newer term. Two of the most common queries include:
- What does technical SEO mean?
- Is it different from on-page and off-page SEO or actually comes under any of these?
Well, we can say technical SEO relates directly to all the SEO activities and techniques apart from link building and content optimization. To define it in simpler terms, technical SEO covers the below discussed aspects, and improves the efficiency of a site that is being crawled and ranked.
If you consider search engine optimization as constructing a house, you can also count technical SEO as its solid foundation. You need to look at it separately and seriously as any other work done aside from the content. Let’s discuss each aspects of technical SEO in more detail.
- Website speed
A recent study of Amazon showed that even a 100 ms delay in the load time leads to about 1% decrease in their online sales. As per the latest search engine algorithms, the page load speed (the time taken to display the full content of a page) is among the top 10 ranking factors. To enhance loading speed:
Use simpler templates – Limit web page components and take a minimalist approach to design and development. The additional elements like widgets, plugins, and tracking codes may take extra time to load. So, all these need to be optimized. Other important aspects you need to take care of to enhance loading speed are:
- Optimizing the visuals by keeping the size to bare minimum by ensuring quality.
- Limiting the number of redirects.
- Making use of browser cache that can help improve the page loading speed for the re-visitors.
With further research into the current trends, you can find more innovating ways to improve page load speed.
- Website mobile friendliness
Everyone knows that Google prefers and prioritizes websites that are mobile friendly when determining search result ranking. But that is not the only reason that should drive you to optimize your website for mobile viewing. The statistics clearly show how mobile users are taking over PC users by a significant margin. People now carry out searches and buy products online through their mobile devices. Failing to make your website mobile friendly will not only harm your search engine ranking, but it would also cause you to lose potential customers. If you are not sure about whether or not your website is mobile friendly, you can use the mobile-friendly test tool of Google.
- Site architecture
Devising an SEO friendly site architecture is also necessary for an SEO company to ensure reassuring search engine ranking of their clients’ websites. The major aspects to consider while planning the site architecture include:
- Importance of robot.txt file
- A clear-cut sitemap
- A consistent and clear URL structure
- Secure browsing
Altogether, we can say the need is to use HTTPS:// than the conventional HTTP://.
Back in 2014, Google announced that they have included HTTPS as a top ranking factor. Even though Google used to keep their ranking factors as a secret, they wanted HTTPS to be adopted by every website to enhance internet security. So, having your site as HTTPS:// will surely give you a boost in search engine ranking. HTTPS adds optimum security and protection to websites.
This is another important aspect of SEO-friendly site architecture. Breadcrumb or otherwise known as ‘breadcrumb trail’, is basically a navigation method that reveals location of a particular user. Breadcrumbs present the hierarchy of a website transparently and indicates the user where he or she actually is. This also helps to reduce the stages needed if someone wants to get back to the home page or different higher level pages of a site.
- Structured data markup
This is another important aspect of technical SEO which talks about data rich snippets. Google identifies the nature of your resource by assessing the content and on-page optimization, where rich snippets can take it to the next level to make the job simplified for the search engines.
Rich snippets are aimed to provide users an overview of information related to a particular query, i.e., if you search about a service or product, it can show you everything from its star-rating to number of customer reviews.
- Duplicate content
Duplicate content is as an adverse technical SEO issue, which can cause degrading the value of your site in search engines. From the first Panda algorithm update of 2011, Google fine tuned a lot to gain control over the quality of content and resources on the web, and started to intensively punish the spammy activities and plagiarisms of websites.
The above is just a brief overview of technical SEO, which is a never-ending topic to deal with. This covers all topics that are relevant and essential elements for optimizing websites as per the changing requirements of search engines.