Technical Search Engine Optimization is very important. In order to be successful, you must have a solid technical foundation. Technical SEO can help you optimize your website and discover website problems that non-technical SEO cannot capture. In fact, in some cases, technical SEO is crucial before creating links.
Therefore, you need to be fully aware of all aspects of technical SEO and get a hand of it completely. In this article, we will look at some of the most common SEO failures and tell you about 10 important technical factors to run an SEO audit online.
The sitemap file on your website will help search engines to better understand its structure, find the location of the webpage and grant them access to your website. XML sitemaps can be very simple and don’t have to be much good-looking.
How to check Sitemaps?
This is a very simple process. As the sitemap is installed in the root directory, you can verify the existence of the sitemap file by searching for Screaming Frog, or you can verify it in your browser by adding sitemap.xml or sitemap.html. Make sure to check the “Sitemap” section in Google Search Console.
Through this, you can know if you have ever submitted a sitemap, how many URLs have been successfully indexed, and if there are any other problems. If don’t have an existing sitemap you must create one.
With robots.txt file, you can easily check the status of the website. The robots.txt file can affect the website’s performance in search results.
For example, if robots.txt is set to “disallow: /”, it means that Google will never index the site because “/” is the root directory. It is important to establish it as one of the first SEO checks because many website owners do not understand it. Generally, it should be set to “disallow:” instead of forward slashes. This will allow all user agents to crawl the website.
How to check for Robots.txt?
Check if the robots.txt file exists in Google Search Console. You can go to crawl> robots.txt tester to do this.
With this you can see what is currently streaming and if any modifications will improve the file. It is also a good idea to keep track of the robots.txt file. Monthly screenshots will help you determine if and when to make changes and help you identify errors in the index.
The “GSC Tracking Errors” section will help you determine if there are tracking errors on your website.
Finding and correcting crawl errors is an important part of any website audit because a large number of website crawl errors can lead to increased trouble to Google in finding and indexing pages. The continuous SEO technical maintenance of these projects is essential to having a healthy website.
How to check for Crawl Errors?
In Google Search Console, look for servers 400 and 500, and errors not found on the website. All these types of errors must be identified and corrected. In addition, you can use Screaming Frog to find and identify server error codes 400 and 500. Just click Bulk Export> Response Code> Client Error (4xx) Inlinks and Server Error (5xx) Inlinks.
Any e-commerce site implementation will have an SSL certificate. However, for security reasons, Google has recently tended to use websites with SSL certificates, so it is best to determine if the website has a security certificate installed.
How to check for SSL Certificate?
If the sites have https:0020// on their domain, they have security certificates, although this level of inspection can reveal problems. If the red X appears next to https: // in the domain, there may be a problem with the security certificate. Screaming Frog cannot identify these security issues, so it is best to check https: //www, https://blog, or https: //.
If two of them are opposite the main domain (if the main domain has https: //), then the two cross X, it is likely that an error occurred during the purchase of the SSL certificate.
To ensure that all https:// variants can be successfully resolved, a wildcard security certificate must be obtained. This wildcard security certificate will ensure that all possible variants of https:// can be parsed correctly.
Multiple URLs: Capital vs. Lowercase URLs
This issue may cause Google to treat two or more versions of a webpage as a single source of content on your website. There can be multiple versions, from uppercase URL to lowercase URL, URL with hyphen and underscore.
Websites with serious URL problems may even contain the following:
In this case, the content has seven different URL versions.
From Google’s point of view, this is bad. The easiest way to solve this problem is to point the rel=canonical of all these pages to a version that should be considered the only content source. However, it is not clear whether these URLs exist. The ideal solution is to merge all seven URLs into one RL and then set the rel=canonical tag on that URL.
Determining images that have larger files and increase page load time is a key optimization factor for correctness. This is not an absolute final optimization factor, but if managed correctly it can greatly reduce your page loading time.
Using the “Screaming Frog” spider, we can identify image links on specific pages. After crawling the website, click the URL in the page list and then click the “Image Information” tab. You can also right-click any image in the window to copy or go to the destination URL.
Also, you can click “Bulk Export”> “All Images”, or you can go to “Images”> Images with missing alt text. This will export a complete CSV file that can be used to identify images that lack alt text or images that have very long alt text.
HTML Error and W3C Validation
According to Google’s John Mueller, fixing HTML errors and W3C verification alone will not improve your ranking but fixing these types of errors can help improve rendering in various browsers. If the error is serious enough, these fixes can help improve page speed.
In fact, this is primarily a factor of influence, which means that it can help improve the speed of the main factor website. For example, one area that can help includes adding width and height to the image.
According to W3.org, if the height and width are set, “reserve the necessary space for the image when the page loads.” So, the browser does not have to waste time guessing the size of the image; it can load the image there.
How to check for HTML Error and W3C Validation
Using the W3C validator on W3.org can help you identify HTML errors and correct them accordingly. Make sure to always use the appropriate DOCTYPE that matches the language of the page that the W3C verifier is analyzing. If you fail to do so, it will cause errors everywhere.
Forcing a Single Domain
Although there are many suggestions online, a lot of websites have this big problem. This is the problem of loading multiple URLs, which can cause a lot of issues with duplicate content.
When entering an address in a web browser, you can try using URL variants:
What will happen is that when you enter a URL, all of these pages will load, resulting in a situation where many pages are loaded for one URL, giving Google more opportunities to crawl and index them. This problem will increase exponentially when your internal linking process gradually loses control and you are not using the correct links on the website.
If you don’t control the way you link pages and load them like this, you can give Google a chance to index page-name1.html, page-name1.htm, pAgE-nAmE1.html, and pAgE-nAmE1.htm. All these URLs will still have the same content. This makes the Google bot exponentially messy, so don’t make this mistake.
How to check?
You can check the list of crawled URLs on Screaming Frog and see if Screaming Frog has selected these same URLs. You can also load different variations of these URLs from these websites in the client’s browser and then check if the content is loaded. If you are not redirected to the correct URL and your content is loaded in a new URL variant, you must notify the customer and propose a solution (redirect all these URL variants to the main URL).
Mobile technology will continue to exist and there are many reasons for mobile optimization. One, is that the mobile index had been used for the first time for more than half of the pages in Google search results. Google announced that mobile device indexing first is the default option for any new web domain. Due to the popularity of mobile devices, this should be included in your review. You need to check for these problems.
How to check for mobile optimization?
You need to make sure that everything you develop can be viewed on mobile devices. Install the Google Chrome user agent switch. Use the user agent switch to check the content on the mobile device by selecting iPhone, Samsung, etc. This will show you how your content will look on these devices. Reduce and enlarge the size of the browser window to verify this. If the website responds well, please check your real phone. Report any findings from the audit results to your client.
The purpose of this SEO audit checklist is to collect on-site and off-site inspections to help find any problems and practical tips to solve them.
If you want an SEO audit service, you can contact us or visit our website, https://kings.digital/.
There are many ranking factors as well that cannot be easily determined by simple on-site or off-site inspections, and require time, long-term monitoring methods, and in some cases custom software running. We hope this guide will be useful for you in better auditing your website!