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2024 is here – but is your website SEO-friendly?
Having a great website is about much more than just visual appeal. It needs to not just captivate and engage your human target audience, but also the Google algorithm (and those of other relevant search engines). This is why embedding technical SEO principles into your website’s foundation is so important if you intend to be seen online by the right audiences and at the right time.
SEO or search engine optimisation is a set of digital marketing strategies that are used to improve the organic ranking of a website in search engine results pages (SERPs).
Many different strategies are included in SEO, and one of the least understood is technical SEO. As the base-level foundation of a comprehensive SEO strategy and campaign, it can’t be ignored.
Technical SEO – In a Nutshell
Technical SEO helps you create a website that is easily understood by search engines. Technical elements enable search engines to crawl, index, and render webpages properly and increase opportunities to rank in search results.
Websites that display certain characteristics are given preferential treatment by Google and other search engines (e.g., Bing, Yahoo, Safari). These characteristics include such features as fast loading times, simplified navigation, responsive design, secure connection, and much more.
The three main elements of optimal technical SEO are:
- Performance – includes responsive design, site speed, accelerated mobile pages, code bloat, and more.
- Indexation – includes sitemaps, internal linking, issues with duplicate content, and more.
Tips for Technically Sound SEO-Optimised Website Design
Technical SEO must be embedded into the design and development of a website, whether the site is launching for the first time or being relaunched after redesign or improvement.
The structure and security of your website need to meet certain search engine algorithm expectations for it to be rewarded in search engine results pages. Some of the things you must consider for your site to be technically sound in terms of SEO include:
- Website Speed – the faster your site loads, the more favourably it will perform in search engine results pages. Most internet users will abandon a page and move on if it does not load within two to three seconds at most. Optimising your page speed is essential and it is among the top ranking factors for the Google algorithm.
- Website Security – SSL (Secure Socket Layer) is a security-based technology that encrypts the link between the web server and the web browser. Another important ranking factor, it is easy to identify in a website URL as it will start with https:// as opposed to http://.
- Mobile Optimisation – a majority of online searches are now performed via mobile devices, and consumers are now even shopping online directly from their smartphones. As such, mobile optimisation across both Android and iOS is imperative. Sites must display properly on all screen sizes and be responsive – automatically adjusting to the screens of any device on which they are displayed. This ensures ease of navigation and reading – and is essential for optimal search engine ranking results.
- Sitemap – XML sitemaps are a “roadmap” tool that can help search engines understand webpages and website structure for improved crawlability.
- Avoid Duplication – all content on your website needs to be unique. Duplicate content (across your own website and/or from other web pages online) confuses search engine algorithms and also performs poorly with human audiences when it is identified. Websites that use duplicate content are heavily penalised by search engines.
- Google Search Console Registration – as well as Bing Webmaster Tools. These free resources allow you to submit your website to a search engine for indexation. The XML sitemap must be submitted to Google Search Console and Webmaster Tools when the site is ready to be launched so that crawling can commence and the site can be displayed in SERPs.
While it is ideal to implement technical SEO into your website from the outset, it’s never too late to incorporate these aspects. Whether you go on to undertake a targeted SEO campaign or not, having an SEO-optimised website will stand you in good stead for positive organic ranking growth into the future.
Only a professional, specialist SEO provider has the expertise and insight to properly understand and implement technical SEO principles and practices.
Need an SEO-optimised website?
If you are looking to:
- Launch a new business
- Update or improve your existing site
- Optimise your site for SEO
- Improve your organic search engine ranks
- Get more targeted traffic online
SEOcycle is not your average web development and web design agency!
Unlike most of our competitors, we are an SEO specialist. We approach all of our websites with SEO principles in mind, including technical SEO. Even if you do not intend to undertake an SEO campaign, we design our websites so that they are positioned as well as possible for the Google algorithm (and other search engines) to sit up and take notice.
See some examples of our websites here.