The organic landscape is changing rapidly, and Google has come far from just being a website giving search results from you to choose from. Google’s new Universal search interface has not only provided ample opportunities for sites to get listed in different assets on Search Engine Results Page but at the same time, poor sites with low-quality site architect have taken a huge hit.
Google is committed to providing as relevant information to users as possible and hence the SEO community is noticing frequent algorithm updates, making search more meaningful but at the same time creating ample opportunities for SEOs and clients to ensure that the website follows search best practices.
Merkle Sokrati believes that while there are over 200 different factors that work in tandem to produce quality search results, below are some of the common SEO pitfalls faced by websites.
MAKING THE WEBSITE AVAILABLE TO SEARCH ENGINES
While search bots are constantly crawling and they will eventually find your website from over trillions of webpages on the internet, this might take some time.
Creating a website does not mean that it is discoverable by search engines by default. We have seen search engines taking months to index a website even though the site is operational for a very long time.
Try typing site:yourdomain.com in Google search to find out if Google is aware about the presence of your website and if it has all the pages available in the list, or at least the pages that you care about.
For example, a website with more than 8k direct visits per day remained undiscoverable for Google for over 7 weeks after getting built.
What is the impact?
- Delay in the appearing in Google search results
- Heavy reliance on paid search to get listed in the search
- Impact on brand awareness as users won’t be able to see the listing even though they know about the website
Some of the things that site owners could do?
- Submit the website to search engines using designated platforms, such as Google Search Console
- Create quality content so that other sites link back to your site
- Find ways to constantly keep refreshing content on the site
POOR INTERNAL LINKING
Creating internal links seems very easy for sites, but the real question is – does Google find your site structure search friendly? We have seen several high-profile websites suffer from a poor internal linking profile where even though links look great to users, they create unnecessary bandwidth for search engines while crawling them.
For example, the below diagram represents the site architecture of a popular website in India. The circular nodes are pages where green ones are SEO friendly and the red ones are non-SEO friendly pages.
Clearly, the site doesn’t have a favorable architecture and search engines really struggle in crawling valuable pages due to a lot of internal blockers.
What is the impact of poor site architecture?
- Additional efforts for search engine crawlers in accessing content
- Uneven ranking distribution
- Slower site speed
Some of the things that site owners could do?
- Strategically plan their taxonomy and navigation
- Minimizing redirects
- Making sure that they are linking to SEO friendly pages
- Making sure that that all the domains, social media profiles, and other site inventories are internally linked so that anything can be accessed from anywhere. For example, a link to the domain on social media profile and social media buttons on the website.
THE IMPACT OF A SLOWER WEBSITE
The data shows more than half of the web traffic globally comes from a mobile device and that 53% of mobile site visitors leave a page that takes longer than 3 seconds to load. Still, the average site speed is around 15 seconds. The recent study from Google shows that as page load time goes from one second to 10 seconds, the probability of a mobile site visitor bouncing increases 123%.
Based on Google’s impact calculator, a website with an average of 100,000 visitors per month, a conversion rate of 6% and an average order value of $50 could save $353,803 per annum by taking its site speed from 5 seconds to 2 seconds.
What is the impact of a slow website?
- Speed is the major ranking factor for Google searches happening on Mobile devices
- Poor conversion rate and sales
- Impact on user re-engagement and low returning user rate
Some of the things site that owners could do?
- Avoid bad redirects and broken links
- Cache static resources to save recurring server requests
Request for a FREE and a detailed site audit and help us unveil some of the great opportunities with your site. Together, we are committed to helping you get online and shine on search.