Technical Search Engine Optimisation

Technical SEO: 3 Quick Wins

Technical SEO is hot right now! There is lot going on in SEO world, where everyone is going insane to find the entire “Google secrets” to trick big G to send bucket load of traffic to their sites. Hope one thing is clear to all of us that there is no quick wins in search engine optimisation (or should I say Search Experience Optimisation?) But behold I guess there are some quick wins and which comes by making Google happy, not tricking him into giving you ranking you don’t deserve. Yes boys and girls, ladies and gentlemen, I am talking about technical SEO wins.

Crawl and Fix:

Crawl your site using tools like Screaming Frog or Xenu’s Link Sleuth to find pages on your site returning server redirects/errors (3xx Redirection, 4xx Client Error, 5xx Server Error) and fix the redirects/errors. If redirects are necessary make sure its 301 (permanent redirects) not 302 (temporary redirects)

Seek and Destroy Duplicate Contents:
Duplicate contents have always been a problem for any sites to ranking to its potential. There are many ways a site can generate duplicate contents. See below for most common instances of duplicate content.

Problem: Domain with both www. And non-www version available
Solution: Select default version of site and use permanent redirect (301) to redirect secondary version to the default version.
Problem: Urls with or without trailing slash (/)
Solution: Select default version of site and use permanent redirect (301) to redirect secondary version to the default version.
Problem: Indexed Url with http and https version
Solution: Do not use https site-wide, only use https where you need to encrypt user information.
Problem: Urls with both uppercase and lower case
Solution: force lowercase urls site-wide
Problem: Category pages creating duplicate content
Solution: Use no-index tags to force search engines not to index category pages
Problem: Use of same content within or across site for obvious reason.
Solution: Use rel:canonical tags to identify default version.
Problem: your content is being copied.
Solution: Use tools like copyscape to find duplicate content and outreach to take it down. You also can submit take down request to Google.
Problem: Many web development process include creating a staging server and get the site developed on it, however I have seen many instances where staging server is live and indexed even after the main site pushed live and creating duplicate contents.
Solution: Password protects your staging server and advise search engines not to crawl staging pages by using robots.txt.
Problem: Many sites have multiple version of their home page (/index, /default, /home etc.)
Solution: Have only one version available for crawlers and users (ideally root domain) and redirect 301 all other versions to primary page.
Need for Speed:
Your site performance and speed is vital for your search ranking and your visitors. Google has included site speed as ranking factor long ago and also slow site affect your conversion in a negative way.

Use tools like Webpage Test and Google Page Speed insights to determine your site speed and follow recommendations made by these tools to make your site faster. Regularly monitor your page speed using Google analytics data. Ideally every page on your site should load in less than 4 seconds.