What is technical SEO?

Written by Nate - 22/03/2024

You’ve likely heard of SEO – Search Engine Optimisation – which is a practice you need to do to increase your website’s visibility on Google and other search engines. Many people take this to almost solely mean content and keywords but this isn’t the case and it’s a lot more technical than that.

This is where technical SEO comes in. Technical SEO is behind-the-scenes or back-end SEO work that allows search engines to find and understand your website to determine how it’ll rank your website and its content.

Technical SEO whilst almost invisible to the naked eye is absolutely crucial when it comes to climbing your way to the top of Google, and improving user experience.

What are the benefits of technical SEO?

Improves website crawling for search engine understanding

Technical SEO involves making sure your website structure is organised and easy to navigate so that search engines can understand the website’s content.

Enhances user experience

Whilst it’s important for search engines to understand the structure of your website, it’s equally important for users to understand it and have a good user journey so that they will convert.

Increases search engine ranking potential

By implementing a solid technical SEO strategy, you can increase you ranking potential on search engines such as Google.

What are the key elements of technical SEO?

Technical SEO is multi-faceted with so many elements that affect your technical SEO score which in turn can affect how your website ranks within search engines. Below, we’ve listed some of the key technical SEO elements that you need to review.

Website speed

Ensuring that your website loads quickly is essential for both users and search engine rankings. You are able to test your website load speed using Google’s pagespeed tool, with the most important number being the mobile performance score as Google takes a mobile-first approach to indexing.

Mobile-friendly approach

As mentioned above, Google looks at your mobile site first these days so not only does your website need to load quickly on mobile devices but it needs to work well from a user experience point of view. Buttons and links need to be tappable and content needs to remain legible.

Site structure

A logical site structure will help search engines understand how your website works in terms of directing users from one page to another page along with having categories, sub-categories and ease of your user reaching their end goal whether that’s the checkout or a download.

URL structure

Google also likes clean URLS that are descriptive in telling it what the page is about, that also aren’t too long as it also helps users understand exactly what page they’re on.

Fixing technical issues

There are many technical issues that may arise when you conduct a technical SEO audit which will have an overall impact on SEO and search engine rankings. Some of which include:

Broken links

You may still be linking to pages that no longer exist within your own website, or where the URL has changed as well as having broken links to external websites.

Low text-html ratio

Search engines need content in the form of words in order to understand what pages on your website are about and a technical SEO audit will flag if there are too many images vs the amount of content on your website.

Duplicate content

Google crawlers aren’t that smart (yet) so having very similar content on multiple pages on your website can confuse them and they can read each page as looking the same which will dilute the content of your website.

Missing or duplicate title tags

Every page needs an <h1> header but having more than one on each page is something that again can confuse search engine crawlers, and if you don’t have an <h1> at all search engines will struggle to understand what the page is about.

Alt text

Alt text is a snippet of text embedded in the code of an image that’s used to describe the image to search engines and users. It will further help search engines understand the overall context of your web page, as well as making it accessible to users who use screen readers or other assistive technology when using the internet.

In conclusion

Technical SEO is often something that’s not thought about by anyone other than SEO professionals because as it says on the tin, it can be very technical.

It is, however, absolutely crucial to be on top of your technical SEO as well as your on-page content so that you can climb Google rankings and get ahead of your competitors.

Still can’t get your head around it after reading this article? Contact us today to find out how we can help with our UK SEO services.