Technical SEO plays a major role in how well your website performs in the Search Engines, but it’s easy to get lost in the seemingly-endless list of possible errors impacting performance. As such, Firestarter SEO has identified the top five errors keeping businesses from ranking as well as they should.
When a visitor on a website comes across a page that no longer exists, the result is a 404 error. These errors impact the user experience and credibility of the website, causing search engines to put a lot of weight on ensuring these errors are removed. The good news – resolving these errors is extremely easy. All that’s needed is to implement a 301 redirect to the correct page, which will resolve the error and improve the user experience.
In 2018, Google recognized how many websites were missing an SSL certificate. These certificates provide a layer of security standing between customers’ personal data on a website and potential hackers, helping to ensure a safe and secure experience. In recognizing this potential problem, Google increased the weight they put into having an ssl as a ranking factor. An easy way to tell if your site is secure is if the URL has “https” before the web address. Or, simply look next to your URL and see if the “lock” symbol shows up. If so, you’re all set.
If a page on a website has a “NoIndex” meta tag, search engines will avoid crawling it. In some cases these tags make sense (like a Thank You page after a form fillout), but most of the time we want the site to be as crawlable as possible. After all, the purpose of SEO is to help Google find the site and maximize its visibility.
Not Optimized for Mobile
In today’s world, mobile traffic represents over half of internet searches globally. As such, having mobile-friendly websites is more important than ever if a website wants to maximize its reach and performance. Google prioritized mobile-friendliness with their Mobile First Indexing, so if a website isn’t mobile friendly, they’ll pay for it in the rankings.
When more than one page on a website has identical content, search engines can quickly become confused. This can happen for a variety of reasons, but ultimately Google wants to see unique content on each page so it can have a clear understanding of what content should be presented to a business’ potential audience. These are easy errors to resolve – simply tweak or rewrite content on the duplicate pages and it will resolve itself.
While there are a wide variety of other factors, a business can improve its visibility by simply focusing on these 5 focus areas. For guidance on performing an audit or for frequently asked technical SEO questions, please reach out to one of our experts and we’ll gladly help.