Technical SEO is what makes your website search engine friendly. It’s what crawlers like Google use to determine what content they should show in their index, and what order that content should be shown in.
There are various aspects of technical SEO—site crawlability, accessibility, site architecture—but it all boils down to one thing, making your website easy for both the search engines and the humans who visit it.
In this article, we’ll discuss the importance of technical SEO and easy tips for fixing common problems. Because these issues can affect user experience and search engine results, you’ll want to ensure your urgent care website is running at top performance.
What Is Technical SEO?
Let’s start with what technical SEO is and what it can do for your website. Technical SEO makes your website search-engine friendly by optimizing what the crawlers see and what order they see it in.
It involves improving the website’s technical aspects so that your urgent care center’s pages are more manageable and more user-friendly for patients.
Understanding the core concepts of technical SEO and how they relate to your website will help you troubleshoot any future issues.
Core Concepts of Technical SEO
There are several core concepts you will need to bear in mind when you consider what technical SEO is and how it relates to your urgent care center’s website.
Site Architecture is what shapes your website’s code into what it looks like on the live web. Does everything load in a logical order? Are pages initially displayed with user-friendly URLs? Do these URLs have relevant keywords that help search engines find the correct page?
This is a diagram of your site’s architecture. You can use this to eliminate orphan pages and plan the customer journey. You’re designing an easy map for website visitors to follow.
Page Loading Speed
How quickly your pages or page elements load have a big impact on the user experience. Understanding how this can affect your website and overall business is the first step towards improving your technical SEO. Metrics such as Largest Contentful Paint (how quickly the bulk of your page loads) and First Response Time (the lag between a user action and the execution of a command) are key here.
This refers to how well your page displays and loads on your users’ mobile devices. Mobile-first indexing is an important part of modern marketing practices, as 97% of Americans own a cell phone of some kind.
Your website needs to provide a secure experience for your users. If not, Google will ding your site, and your ranking will suffer.
Fixing Some of the Most Common Technical SEO Problems
Now that you have a better understanding of what technical SEO is and what it can do for your urgent care center’s website, let us look at some common problems.
Clean Up the Robots.txt File
If there are coding errors in the Robots.txt file, Google may not display your page’s meta data or may not display the page at all. If this is happening to your site, make sure the Robots.txt file is up to date. Also, make sure there are no NOINDEX tags embedded in your code—as you may have guessed, this can stop your content from being indexed.
Define Your Canonical URLs
Google does not want to see numerous versions of a page attached to a single URL. This is not out of spite. It simply confuses the crawlers. Make sure you have a single, canonical URL for all your pages so that Google can swiftly and effectively associate the page and its content with the correct web address.
Fix Your Mobile Redirects
If you redirect desktop pages to mobile-friendly versions, make sure the page load speed is not affected. If it is, Google may lower your site’s ranking in their index. There are ways of fixing this through what we call a ‘rel=’canonical’ tag in our code, but
Reduce Data-heavy Page Elements
Google is trying to provide the best possible experience to its users. The powers that be at Google recognize that users want to access content and functionality without delay, so pages that are slow to load are quickly penalized. While multimedia content is great, you don’t want this to slow your page down. Reduce files by removing any unnecessary coding and use multimedia elements sparingly so that they have the appropriate impact without hindering your page.
Make Sure HTTPS is in Place
Any page that collects sensitive data, such as medical data for patient files, needs to be secure. This means they need to have the HTTPS secure protocol in place. Failing to ensure this tells Google that you are not operating a responsible and secure online presence—something that is likely to have an adverse effect on your SEO performance.
Understanding the basics of technical SEO and how common issues can affect your website’s performance is key to establishing a strong internet presence. While you can take on some of these issues yourself, you may find it challenging or simply not have the time.
Luckily, there are professionals out there who have the knowledge and experience to fix these issues for you—and they can create a cost-effective strategy that works within your urgent care center’s budget.
KEEP READING: Why Is SEO Important for Urgent Care Centers?