Technical SEO refers to any aspect of Search Engine Optimisation that involves ensuring that a website is accessible (to bots and users), and that bots can understand and interpret the information architecture in such a way that means your URLs have the best possible chance of being indexed (appearing in search engine results) and ranking as highly possible for your target keywords.


On the face of it, your website may look good, be easy to navigate and surface all of the products or services you want to sell. The way a human views a website, however, is very different to the way a search bot sees it. There are many elements of code may be present on your website that can mean that search bots are unable to access or properly understand the content that sits on the URLs. If this case then these URLs may not be as visible as they could be in search engines (or they may not appear at all!)

Technical SEO audits can be incredibly useful for identifying issues with and opportunities for your website. Using crawling software means you can ‘go behind the scenes’ and view your website as Google would. This could reveal a few quick wins, or uncover a major issue that would yield much better rankings and more traffic if a fix for it was put in place.

Think your website could benefit from a technical audit?


Technical audits can reveal all sorts of different issues, some severe, and some very minor. These are some of the common issues that might be highlighted with an audit, and why they might be causing problems for your website;


Certain elements of code can instruct search engines not to crawl or ‘view’ particular pages, these commands can be configured in the robots.txt file, and could be mistakes or legacy measures that no longer need to exist. An audit can reveal if any pages are blocked and if they could provide any value if they weren’t blocked. In other instances, pages may have a noindex or canonical tag that mean the pages can be ‘seen’ but won’t be added to search engines indexes.


Broken links result in 404 errors, i.e. pages that can’t be found because they don’t exist. 404 errors may be accidental (maybe a URL has been spelled incorrectly) or intentional (a page has been deleted because it is no longer relevant). 404 are not ALWAYS a bad thing, but if a 404 page has traffic being driven to it, or it has links from other websites; it pays to deal with it as quickly as possible, not doing so may result in traffic and revenue being left on the table.


Your website should be as lean and inefficient as possible while ensuring that you are merchandising all your product/service URLs in a way that sets them up to stand the best possible chance of rankings as well as possible. If your site architecture is inefficient (i.e. important URLs many clicks away from the homepage, or having lots of useless pages), this can make it harder for search bots to crawl


How frustrating is it when a website is really slow? Google know that users don’t like this and therefore will prefer websites that load quickly. Technical audits can reveal how fast your website actually is, and what you can do to speed it up. A faster website may mean better rankings, and fewer people exiting your site because they’re frustrated with the speed.


While it’s important to have enough pages to capture all the demand in the market related to what you’re selling, it is possible to have too many pages. If you have two or more pages on the same topic, search engines may get confused as to which page to surface for relevant queries, and may not show either page.

These are just a few examples of the kinds of issues a technical audit can uncover. Spotting these issues is just the first step, the next stage is devising solutions and building solid technical foundations that give your website the best possible platform to start driving more traffic.

Technical audits can be carried out on a one-off basis, but most websites would benefit from a tech ‘health check’ at least once a quarter. As a general rule, the larger your website is, and the more frequently it changes, the more frequently technical audits should be carried out.

Not sure if you could benefit from a technical SEO audit? Get in touch and I’ll be happy to answer any more questions you have…