Your website’s rankings are central to its success, and you need to make sure that you are doing everything that you can to make your site rank as highly as possible. While content is king for your website, you also need to regularly perform technical housekeeping duties to keep your website running at its peak performance, and that means peak SEO too.
You need to get into the habit of regularly checking the speed at which your website loads. You may start off with a quick loading site, but as time progresses and you add more content, products or services, you may inadvertently slow down your site – which will turn your visitors off. You may need to compress images and reduce the number of redirects that you have on your pages, and even remove redundant data. Redundant data includes removing non-essential code, removing code formatting, and even making labels more concise. You need to check your site’s speed for both desktop and mobile sites.
How you use labels on your site can dramatically affect your SEO. Everything that is included on your website needs to add value to it. Non-descriptive labelling is a wasted opportunity to provide search engines further information – embrace context auditing. Your title tag, URL and navigation labels should be singing in harmony. Revisit your site and make sure that your H1 labels match the navigation labels. If your site’s visitors have trouble navigating your site, so too will the search engines. Run your labels through a search engine to confirm their relevancy to your industry. You should also pay attention to how you have labelled the images on your site, use alt-text to further explain your image.
The links on your website need to be fully operational, not only because your site’s visitors will become frustrated by a 404 return error message, but it is one way that search engines rank your site is by crawling its links. Dead links can stop search engine spiders from indexing your site – you need to check your links. If your site is small, you can manually check your links with Chrome’s ‘Check My Links’ extensions; for larger sites or if you have never done this, you may need additional help. However, once you have identified broken links, the outcome is the same: you need to fix them. Use this as an opportunity to update the links and refresh your content to accommodate the new sources.
While performing housekeeping exercises can take up your time, you must remember that Google is all about user experience, and if your site diminishes user experience in any way, it will be harming your site’s rankings. You need to ensure that you are meeting the expectation of the site’s visitor. You know your site inside out, but your visitor and the search engine bots do not; you need to make their journey through your website as easy as possible, and by regularly performing checks, you will reduce the likelihood of your site dropping position in the ranking.
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