Technical SEO Services: Fundamentals and Everything in Between
There are many aspects of SEO, but the fundamentals of technical SEO services are easy to understand.
Learning the basics is the best way to get started with technical SEO.
To do this, you need to know how search engines work and what makes a website rank well in them.
Here's a quick rundown of what you need to know:
Technical SEO is the practice of optimizing a website so it can rank higher in search engine results pages (SERPs).
A technical SEO consultant can help you audit your website and create a technical SEO checklist to improve your website's performance.
After all, you could be making the world's most engaging, thoughtful content on your website — the kind that converts visitors into customers.
But, your efforts will be wasted if search engines can't properly browse your website and index it.
That's why technical SEO is important.
Even at the most basic level, Google and other alternative search engines need to be able to find, crawl, render and index your web pages.
However, this is not always enough.
For your site to be fully optimized for technical SEO, your webpages need to load fast, be secure, mobile optimized, with no duplicate content, … and a thousand other things that go into technical optimization.
For example, part of technical SEO services is the use of an API (Application Programming Interface) to analyze your web pages for common problems.
And don't get me wrong.
Even if your technical SEO isn't perfect, you will rank.
However, it goes without saying that the easier you make it for Google to access your content, the better your chance to rank.
Building structured data means helping Google understand your website content by creating a detailed site description in a language that Google can readily understand.
So, your structured data might include the article's title, the description, or content, and other elements that are in a code (schema) that Google likes (more on that below.)
Adding schema markup to your website can be a great way to improve your technical SEO.
As mentioned before, schema markup is a language (code) that helps search engines understand the content on your website.
The schema.org vocabulary includes formats for structuring data around all kinds of people, places, and things on the web.
Does setting up Schema directly help your site's SEO?
Google itself has been vague about its impact on rankings.
But… the short answer is No.
In fact, a search engine ranking factors study from Backlinko found no correlation between Schema and first-page rankings.
That being said:
Using Schema CAN help search engines better understand your site.
You can increase your chances of appearing in Rich snippets and Google's Knowledge Graph.
And because they stand out in the SERPs, they can dramatically improve your organic click-through rate.
So, it's definitely worth it.
In 2022, everything is about security.
And, if you're not using HTTPS yet, now's the time to switch.
HTTPS is a more secure way to browse the web, and it's becoming more and more common.
Actually, it has become more of a necessity than a choice.
Many website owners are choosing to switch to HTTPS because it's a simple way to improve security.
But it's a big deal, and one of the best things you can do to protect yourself online today is to switch to it as soon as possible.
And if your site isn't secure, then every time someone visits it, they'll risk having their personal information stolen and used against them.
HTTPS means that not one person and not any search engine can see what you're up to on your computer.
That includes things like which sites you visit, how long you stay on each website, and which links you click on while visiting.
“Well…the security part is a huge plus, but what about the performance?” – I hear you say.
There has been a misconception that HTTP performs better than HTTPS, but that isn't true.
Semantic markup uses a markup language (such as HTML) to convey information about the meaning of each of these elements.
What it does is that it selects the proper markup elements and maintains complete separation between this markup and the visual presentation of the elements.
HTML5 is the most recent version of Hypertext Markup Language — a code that helps structure content on the web.
But what does this have to do with SEO?
Well, one of the most critical aspects of technical SEO is making sure your website's code is up to date and doesn't have any errors.
The semantic use of HTML elements “enhances searchability, accessibility, internationalization, and interoperability.”
What this means is that writing semantic markup is mandatory if you want your website
- To achieve a high search engine ranking,
- To interface effectively with other web services.
- To be available to different visitors
- To be accessible to all visitors,
So, if you understand HTML tags, you understand SEO and can improve your ranking.
In HTML code, you add hyperlinks to an element that describes the link (the anchor text.)
Anchor text is the thing you click on to follow the hyperlink.
By clicking on hyperlinks, you go straight to the target site rather than routing a request through the server.
Page speed is one of the most important factors in ranking high in search engines.
To improve your page speed, you can optimize your images, minify your HTML and CSS, and use a content delivery network.
A technical SEO consultant can help you with these things and more.
As web content becomes richer and more dynamic, page speed becomes a more critical factor in user experience.
It also is a sign of how well your content ranks in the SERPs.
Since page speed is a ranking factor, you want to make sure you pay close attention to how long it takes for your content to load once a user requests it.
Now… what will happen next?
To ensure that your website appears in the SERPs, you need to understand what search engines are doing when crawling, indexing, and rendering your website.
The better you understand how this works, the more you can improve your technical SEO approach to meet the needs of visitors and search engines alike.
It goes without saying that the more you meet the needs of search engines, the better your chances of ranking well in the SERPs.
Make sure your website isn't blocking Googlebot from crawling your site.
Your website will not appear in the search results if blocked.
Rendering happens when the search engine has finished crawling and indexing your website content.
If all goes well and your content begins appearing in the SERPs, Google (or any other search engine) wants to ensure that users see and interact with your content, just as you intended.
Accelerated Mobile Pages is a type of open-source HTML framework that Google has created to help you make web content friendly to mobile users.
This type of code allows you to focus and prioritize on mobile user experience first.
That's why this is something you should consider if you haven't already.
After all, mobile internet browsing has boomed in the last decade, with over 50% of web traffic coming from a mobile device.
That's why it's fundamental that you build the kind of content that is easily accessible from any mobile device or tablet.
When you build web content with this open-source HTML framework known as AMP, these are some of the benefits:
- AMP load almost immediately
- It is much easier to build than other types of frameworks
- Many major platforms support AMP
- Developers can still implement CSS in AMP (keep in mind that the code won't be as complex)
- You simply have to build on the groundwork components of AMP as they are already there.
Hiring a technical SEO consultant is the best way to ensure your website is optimally configured for search engine crawlers and that you get the most of their technical SEO services.
We hope you've found this primer on technical SEO useful in some way.
After all, it is meant to be an introduction of sorts—a general way to think about technical SEO and the problems that it aims to solve.
That being said, it would be impossible to cover all of the many skills involved in technical SEO here.
Next time, we'll look at some more advanced techniques for dealing with a number of other technical problems that crop up when you're trying to optimize your website for search engines.