SEO is indeed a competitive sport, so much that competing for a certain page ranking on the search engines can feel a lot like participating in the Olympics and winning that may seem like winning a gold medal at the Olympics! With the advancement of web tech strategies, there’s a corresponding list of ranking factors that play a vital role in deciding whether or not a webpage may be able to beat out the competition and seize the first SERP rank. At the top of the list is qualifying to compete and for the search engine optimizers, this means technical SEO. Technical SEO is all about ensuring that your website is eligible to take the first step off that starting line.
Technical SEO elements that push up your site rank
- Create an HTML sitemap: An HTML sitemap is a regular on your website that comprises of a collection of links with the intention of helping both search spiders and humans to navigate through your website effortlessly. Since we are pretty aware of the fact that web crawlers use links to move from one page to another, having an HTML sitemap in the footer of each page of your website allows the spider to enter your website through any page and then navigate to the other pages from that page.
- Create an XML Sitemap: An XML sitemap is similar to the HTML one but this is exclusively for the search spiders to crawl and index. Since this is to be seen only by the search spiders, it need not look pretty; it can even be a one URL per line list of links that are saved in a text file. If you wish to ensure that all the pages in your website are crawled and indexed, it is vital for you to create an XML sitemap.
- Make your website speedy: Since Spring 2010, Google has been visibly using website speed as a ranking factor. Google simply loves speedy websites and the Senior Vice President of Google, Amit Singhal, said it a number of times. Hence, you can well understand the importance of making your website speedy enough to impress Google. One of the easiest ways of making your website run faster is to clean up its code as less code means smaller file sizes and faster loading times. Thanks to web tech, there are many other ways of doing the same.
- Include a Robots.txt file: A Robots.txt file is a publically accessible text file that guides the search engine spider crawling directives. This is placed at the root of a website host and is usually kept to stop search spiders from indexing and crawling specific directories and other designated files. Even if it’s empty, it’s important that this file exists. Include your Robots.txt file with caution and ensure that you don’t make mistakes accidentally.
- Ensure your site is optimized for mobiles: The number One priority of Google is user experience and this search engine has always been very open about it’s preference for responsive websites that effortlessly adapt themselves and respond perfectly to multiple devices. Web tech has reached great heights, so much so that it is now possible to make a website look perfectly okay on a desktop, laptop, tablets and even on mobiles. Nowadays, not having a mobile optimized website is a major user-experience flaw.
Like winning a gold medal is hard, earning a top spot in the SERPs is also tough. So are web tech and its influence on SEO. If you’re someone who is still lost between the abyss of robots, canonicals, Sitemaps and siloing, don’t fret as it’s never too late to start acting.