Regardless of where you are in your career as an SEO, you likely started at the bottom. Being a fresh face in an established industry can be daunting when you’re just starting out, but you’ll learn the ropes soon enough like everyone else. As a beginner, you’re likely eager for some pointers on how to start off in SEO on the right foot. Let’s go over some technical SEO facts for beginners to help prepare you for the road ahead!
1.) Google Could Care Less About Your Sitemap Structure
The main thing you have to be worried about in terms of your sitemap is that its XML. As long as the sitemap is XML, you can go forth and structure it however you want. Google will crawl your site the same regardless of category breakdown.
2.) Consider Your Page Speed
If the pages on your site load slowly, it’ll impact more than just user experience. Page speed is a long-standing ranking factor, so it’s important for your site to be quick. You can opt to utilize Google’s PageSpeed Insights tool for an analysis of your site speed, as well as suggestions on how you can improve loading speed. Mobile performance is also very important, which is why Google has also developed a tool that tests mobile site speed. Take advantage of these tools and do what you can to keep site speed up!
3.) Switch to HTTPS
Considering website security is now a ranking factor, it’s important to make sure your site is as secure as possible. So, installing an SSL certificate is in your best interest. Google Chrome now issues warnings that a site isn’t secure when you access a site without an SSL installed, and I personally would not like to be on a site that is indicating it isn’t secure. Over half of the page one results are now HTTPS, so this is definitely something to implement for your clients.
4.) Keep Redirects in Place for One Year
It can take Google a bit to recognize the fact that your site has moved, which is why it’s in your best interest to keep 301 redirects in place for at least one year. If the redirect is active on a relatively important page that ranks well and has quality links, it’s recommended that you never get rid of the redirect.
These are just a few facts that can help start you off on a good note. There’s a lot to learn about SEO, especially since new tweaks and changes are introduced quite often. Do your best to stay on top of the latest trends and you’ll be good to go. Soon enough you’ll be experienced like the rest of us, and be thankful that you’re not brand new.