Ranking your website higher through technical SEO in search results can be as simple as finding the right keywords and using them in your content. However, this approach often gives minor results. To really take your site to the next level, you need to employ technical SEO strategies that keep your content on Google’s good side without sacrificing the quality of your posts. Here are some ways to rank your website higher with technical SEO.
Link building can be time-consuming, but it’s an essential part of any search engine optimization strategy. Building backlinks from other high-ranking sites will help Google understand that your website is authoritative and relevant. The better Google understands your website, the higher you’ll rank in search results.
There are a number of things you can do on your WordPress website that will help you rank higher. Use technical SEO to create site architecture and flow so search engines can easily crawl your site, understand its content, and return relevant results when people search for terms related to your business. There are three main components: URL structure, schema markup, and sitemaps. Title tags, meta descriptions, robots metadata—and more—can also be used to optimize your site for ranking in Google’s top 10. This isn’t a comprehensive list of every possible technical SEO tactic or trick—just a guide on how you can leverage them all at once.
Crawl Budget Technical SEO
Before diving into technical SEO, you should know how much work and money it will take. It’s important to understand that there is no such thing as white hat SEO or black hat SEO, instead, hundreds of shades of gray. White-hat strategies are all safe, more expensive, and provide higher-quality results over time. Black-hat tactics cost less upfront but can get your site banned by Google—and aren’t worth it in most cases. For example, a $150 investment on a single link could end up costing you thousands in penalties and lost ad revenue if discovered by Google or Bing.
A 2011 study by ComScore found that 25% of consumers use their mobile device as their primary Internet-access tool, a trend that’s only going to increase. (See also: Ten Ways Mobile Is Revolutionizing Digital Marketing.) For marketers and businesses, it means that in order to reach your customers effectively, make sure your website is mobile-friendly.
Mobile-friendliness has a direct impact on SERP rankings because Google wants users to have a pleasant experience when they use its search engine. If your website isn’t mobile-friendly, then Google will not rank it highly in search results—and ultimately you could lose out on potential clients who want or need access to information via their smartphones or tablets.
Rich Snippets / Snippets Markup
Rich snippets are a powerful way to tell search engines what your content is about and how you want it to appear in search results. One of the best ways is through rich snippets markup, which allows search engines such as Google and Bing to understand more about your content. Rich snippets have been available for years, but many people don’t take advantage of them—which is why you should start using them today.
Keyword Stuffing or Keyword Density
Keyword stuffing is a black hat SEO technique where web pages are over-optimized for search engines by repeating keywords too many times, which can be easily detected by search engines and may result in an algorithm sanction. That said, for some niche markets, keyword density is critical because there is not enough competition.
When you’re creating your WordPress website, there are two ways to optimize your post or page for a particular keyword. You can do it manually or use automation software (like Ahrefs). Both options have their merits. This guide explains how manual optimization works and compares it with automated tools. To rank higher on Google and other search engines, you need to make sure that your WordPress website is optimized correctly.
Test Your Site Technical SEO
Just because your site works well on your computer doesn’t mean it will work well on everyone else’s. Check out how your site looks on different browsers and devices. Ideally, you want all of these experiences to be as smooth as possible. You can use tools like BrowserShots, Browshot, or Critillas to check out how a variety of sites look in different browsers, but there are lots of great websites that allow you to see what popular sites look like when you visit them from various browsers and devices
Since page speed has been a ranking factor for Google in recent years, it’s important that you optimize your site. Every second counts when users come across your page. If they don’t see what they need right away, they will quickly click off and head elsewhere. Don’t let that happen! Invest time into optimizing your web pages so visitors can find what they want faster and stay longer on your site.
Google Search Console Technical SEO
In addition to seeing your site’s performance from a keyword point of view, you can also use Search Console to make sure you have no technical issues that could prevent search engines from crawling your site effectively. This platform of Technical SEO allows you to see if there are any 404 errors on your website and helps guide you through making changes for better results.
This is really important for anyone running an e-commerce website because it helps you identify problems that might be keeping potential customers from being able to find or buy from your site—problems like errors in navigation or missing product pages. Of course, Search Console doesn’t just help retailers; virtually any business can take advantage of it. If anything on your site isn’t working as intended, or if it loads slowly, Google will know about it.
If you’re trying to rank your website higher, it’s important that you understand what is and isn’t working for you. Google Analytics is an essential tool for measuring data about your site and viewing where your traffic is coming from. If certain keywords are giving you more traffic than others, try optimizing those words in your on-page content. Doing so can help improve how often that keyword appears on your page. When that happens, Google will take notice and push up your rankings.
Optimize Your XML Sitemap
XML sitemaps are a staple of technical SEO because they serve as a formal directory of all your web pages. This is important for search engines, and it’s also helpful to users who want to know what’s on your site. In many cases, having an XML sitemap will trigger Google and other search engine crawlers to visit your site more often—especially if you add keywords in front of each URL. For example, if you have an XML sitemap that lists products and URLs like /product-one/, /product-two/, etc., a crawler is more likely to crawl each individual product page just so it can keep its records up-to-date.
Optimize Your 404 Page (Technical SEO)
The 404 page is one of those web pages that rarely gets looked at by a user, but search engines often will. If you want your site to rank higher, be sure that your 404 page includes plenty of useful content and relevant keywords, just like any other page on your website. That way, if anyone does land on it, they’ll continue being drawn into your site and will hopefully convert into another visit or customer.
Check Your Canonical URLs
Whether you’re using content management systems like WordPress or Joomla or building sites from scratch, it’s crucial that every page have a canonical URL. This is basically a way of communicating which URL Google should be prioritizing (and therefore ranking higher in search results). The only problem is, that many webmasters don’t realize they even need to worry about canonical URLs and others make some serious mistakes that cause their pages to lose out on rankings. Fortunately, fixing up your canonicals is an easy fix—all you need to do is replace your old canonical URLs (the ones that aren’t pointing at your most important pages) with new ones.
Optimize Your Robots.txt Technical SEO
The robots.txt file is a simple text file used by search engines to tell them where they should and shouldn’t go on your website. If you don’t want Google crawling certain parts of your site, for example, you can specifically instruct it not to in your robots.txt file. In addition, if you have a section of your site that isn’t ready to be indexed yet (for example, if you’re still working on creating original content), then you can use robots.txt to prevent Google from indexing that section until it is ready. To learn more about how to optimize your Robots.txt file for technical SEO purposes, check out our guide here.
Add SSL to Make Website Secure
For both local and potential customers, seeing HTTP in a website’s URL or address bar instills confidence that they are communicating and conducting business over a secure connection. Adding an SSL (Secure Sockets Layer) certificate to your website or web application secures all communications between your site and its visitors, including login information and credit card numbers. It will also make it easier for Google (and Bing) crawlers to detect that your site is HTTPS-enable.
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