Quick Wins In The Field Of Technical SEO optimization

One factor outweighs the other in the total search engine algorithm, with the sum of all separate parts ultimately determining the search results. For this reason, it is advisable to make choices on which factors you will develop the SEO activities. If you are relatively new to search engine optimization, it is wise to look for quick wins in SEO. In this blog article, we discuss expected SEO quick wins in the field of website technology. These essential technical SEO factors contribute significantly to your website or web shop’s search engine performance and can also be remedied with a relatively limited investment in time!

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1. Provide clean URLs

A common mistake has an unclear URL structure. Suppose your website is built from undefined URLs. In that case, this can cause Google to not place the website correctly in the SERP (SERP stands for ‘Search Engine Results Page,’ in Dutch it is also referred to as the ‘search engine result page’ When you make sure that you use clear or “neat” URLs, the content of the page is more apparent to both the visitor and Google.

2. Submit a sitemap.xml

Although submitting a sitemap.xml to Google should be part of a website administrator’s standard procedure, we have learned from experience that the majority of websites and webshops have not sent sitemap.xml to Google. However, if it is relevant for someone to know how your website works, it is Google! By submitting a sitemap.xml, you let Google know how many URLs your website consists of so that Google knows how many pages to index. The example below shows you step-by-step how you can quickly provide a sitemap.xml for a WordPress website.

  • Download the Yoast SEO plugin for WordPress (if the Yoast SEO plugin is already installed, you can, of course, skip this step;
  • When the plugin is installed, click on ‘SEO’ in the left WordPress menu and then on sitemap ;
  • Check the box to let the Yoast plugin automatically generate a sitemap.xml ;
  • Check if your sitemap has been successfully created by surfing to your domain name / sitemap.xml (for example https://shadowis.nl/sitemap.xml) and see if there is a sitemap.xml ;
  • Did you succeed? Then log in to your search console account ( Google webmaster tools ) and navigate to the website where you added the sitemap.xml ;
  • Then click on the sitemaps heading in your dashboard (on the far right of the screen); you will now navigate to a page where a red button is visible at the top right with ‘add / test sitemap’;
  • Now paste the extension sitemap.xml after the URL is displayed, and then press “test sitemap” to link the URL.

If the test passes, your sitemap will be automatically sent to Google!

3. Delete all ‘broken links’ or ‘dead links.’

Every link on your website determines the page’s link value in question; simply put, the more links that refer to a page, the better the link value (and thus the relevance for the search engines) of this page can be. Therefore, a ‘broken link’ can have a very negative effect on the link status of the page being referred to. A typical example: your website’s homepage contains a link to a category page, which then leads to various connections to the product pages. Imagine that the link from the homepage to the category page is not set correctly, this will not only result in a worse link value for your category page, but at the same time, it also causes a more inadequate link value of your product pages.

To help you find ‘broken links’ on your website, there are several great tools available:


  • The free Google Chrome extension ‘check my links’ allows you to check all the website page links at the touch of a button. When the check is completed, all incorrect links will be displayed as 404 errors, after which these links can be adjusted via the CMS of your website so that they function again.


  • ‘Xenu’ is a perfect tool if you have an extensive website or webshop, since with the ‘check my links extension’ you have to check each page individually. ‘Xenu’ scans the website or webshop thoroughly and maps whether all links still function correctly. If the tool detects a ‘broken link,’ this will be displayed in an overview, after which the incorrect URLs can be adjusted via the CMS.

4. Use the canonical tag

Google penalizes so-called ‘duplicate content’ (or duplicated content) when compiling the search results. However, it often happens that your website or webshop contains ‘duplicate content’ without you noticing this yourself. Duplicated content can arise when working with filters or categories, especially when you have a webshop or webshop module. In many cases, when a website visitor clicks on a filter, the page content, in theory, remains the same on two different pages (use of a filter affects the page URL). Google sees this as ‘duplicate content,’ as there are two different URLs. The most straightforward solution to avoid ‘duplicate content’ is to use the ‘canonical tag.’

Suppose that the Shadow website, for whatever reason, contains multiple pages with the same content, then by adding the ‘canonical tag’ you can refer to the primary page on this topic. By setting these ‘canonical tags’ correctly, Google will not consider the ‘reuse’ of the content as ‘duplicate content.

5. Provide uniquely filled title tags and meta descriptions

In addition to ‘duplicate content’ in the website texts, the use of a double ‘title tag’ or ‘meta description’ is also a common mistake. Therefore, it is essential to provide all your website pages with a unique ‘title tag’ and ‘meta description.’ It often happens that the ‘title tag’ and ‘meta description’ is not filled in, so that the CMS automatically generates these descriptions. The consequence: when the ‘title tag’ and ‘meta description is automatically filled in by the CMS on several pages, the chances are that the CMS automatically generates the same description. Google punishes both duplicated website texts and duplicate reports. Fortunately, this problem can be easily solved:

  • Log in to your search console and open the website you want to check;
  • Navigate to ‘Search Format’ in the menu and select ‘HTML Enhancements.’ This overview contains all double ‘meta descriptions’ and ‘title tags,’ but also the missing and the descriptions that are too long or too short;
  • Click on one of the given options to view an overview of all ‘meta titles’ or ‘meta descriptions’ that are used twice;
  • Adjust the duplicate or missing ‘title tags’ and ‘meta descriptions’ via the CMS of your website or webshop.

6. Remove any possible HTML errors

Various errors can occur in the source code of a website or webshop without you having to see this on the website itself. Solving potential problems is a reasonably technical affair so that you may need an expert web developer’s help. Because not resolving detected HTML errors does have a significant adverse effect on your website or web shop’s search engine performance, it is essential to check the HTML status of your website. A free tool is also available for this, namely the W3C Markup Validation Service. It is effortless: enter your website URL and press check. You could forward all errors found to a web developer. The fewer HTML errors you have, the better it will be for your website and search engine performance!

7. Optimize the user experience and speed of your website

Last but not least, offer your website visitor the best possible website experience! With the free tool Google Pagespeed Insights, the user experience and your website’s speed can be analyzed. Even better: this tool immediately gives you concrete tips on how to optimize the user experience and speed of your website. Based on these tips, you immediately know what you need to adjust to achieve a better user experience for your website visitor, which Google rewards with better search engine performance.

Good luck with applying the discussed quick wins in the field of technical SEO optimization.

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