Taking Technical SEO Advice From SEOmoz

3 min read

28 June 2012,

Digital Marketing

SEOmoz is considering to be one of the biggest organization in SEO industry, providing amazing tools to help you in your SEO investigation and website audit. We are using them for some time now in Webarts and we have been very satisfied with them. But what makes SEOmoz so unique from others is actually the massive and active community it has, which helps SEO professionals and Internet Marketing Agencies come along and exchange thoughts and discussions any various SEO subjects.

As part of its paid membership (in addition the link analysis tool Open Site Explorer) SEOmoz offer what they call their "web app". It's basically a set of tools for monitoring the technical and on-page elements of a site that is specified by the user. Once you have entered your site's URL, and allowed a day or so for the mozbot to spider your site, then it shows various crawl errors, warning and notices that should be paid attention to. I thought, seeing as SEOmoz is an authority in the industry, it would be worth putting a selection of this advice in a blog post, and briefly explaining each. So here goes:

Technical/crawl errors to look out for

  • 404 errors – these are the status codes that are returned when a URL is found that is broken or has no content on it. These should be addressed, as they can make for a poor user experience. Incidentally, a 404 page can be a great opportunity for branding – you can be humorous and interesting with your 404 pages, not just "Your page was not found." Boring!
  • Duplicate page content – having pages with identical (or nearly identical) content means a potentially poor user experience for the user, plus can mean that multiple pages are competing for the same rankings.
  • Duplicate page title – Each page on your site should have a unique page title that identifies it to the search engines; this error follows on from the previous entry, since if every page on a site is meant to be unique, then it follows that the page title should be unique too.
  • Title missing, too short, or too long – As above, every page on a website should have a unique title, one that is the correct length (around 70 characters). The title tag is the most important on-page SEO element, as search engines us it to identify the meaning of a page.
  • Too many on-page links – It used to be assumed in SEO that Google only crawls the first 100 links on a page, and that they ignore any links over the 100 link limit. However, it is now accepted that this no longer applies. Just make sure you don't have, like, 10,000 links on a page, because that is just silly. Just apply common sense.
  • Missing meta description - Every page on your site should have a unique meta description that describes the page accurately. The meta description is the element typically displayed in the snippet of the search engine results, below the title. Without a given meta description, the search engines choose their own snippet, which may not be what you want to show Google users.
  • Long URL – Although not a high priority, it is best practice to have a URL that is no longer than 75 characters. This is because it is understood that search engine spiders can lose patience with indexing really long URL's, plus long URL's are longer to read for the user. You should try to include keywords in your URL's, too.
  • Overly dynamic URL's - Although search engines can crawl dynamic URLs, search engine representatives have warned against using over 2 parameters in any given URL.
  • Robots.txt - Make sure your robots.txt file is not blocking search engine spiders. This is an essential part of SEO, since if Googlebot cannot make it to your site, then it cannot index and display you in the SERPS.

On page advice

This is relatively simple, people often overcomplicate the issue. The main objective is to have your chosen keywords for the page mentioned in the title, H1, description, body content (2 or 3 times, plus a few synonyms and variations), plus, ideally, in the page URL. That's it, that pretty much sums up on-page SEO...simple!