Editor’s note: “Ask an SEO” is a weekly column by technical SEO expert Jenny Halasz. Come up with your hardest SEO question and fill out our form. You might see your answer in the next #AskanSEO post! Welcome to another edition of Ask an SEO! Here’s our SEO question for the week:Can an ever increasing number of 404 errors lead to negative impact on Google crawling and indexing? Can it also lead to Google taking longer time to rank a content?It can, yes. But there’s more to it than that.404s Have Varying Degrees of ImportanceI categorize 404 errors into four different categories. (Note, this is my own categorization; it’s not anything official.)1. Errors Encountered on the Live SiteThese are the worst 404s in my opinion, because they occur on the live site when a page is linked to either with a malformed href or the page has been removed but the link to it has not.These are bad because they interfere with user experience and usability … [Read more...] about Do 404 Errors Hurt Google Crawling, Indexing & Ranking?
Useful 404 error page
There are many debates as to the best way to track 404 errors. The range of tools and functions range from just being able to count the 404 errors, all the way up to tracking your 404 errors, then helping you remedy the 404 errors. As always, there is never one fix that applies to all websites. The best fit for a 404 tracking tool depends on what type of site you have, how often errors occur, and whether you need a quick way to fix these 404 errors. Once you answer those questions, take a look at this list of 404 error tracking tools. Google Analytics is a great option if you already use Google Analytics on your website. If you do decide to use Google Analytics, first you would install a small piece of code onto a custom 404 error page for your site. This code will track the amount of times the error page occurs, and then embed this information into the "Top Content" section of your Google Analytics report. Another awesome feature is the ability to tell you the URL that … [Read more...] about Options for 404 Error Tracking
Recently I’ve been working on several ASP.NET 2.0 sites and had to research the best ways to set up URL rewriting, permanent redirects, and custom error pages. ASP.NET 2.0 is a popular platform for building corporate websites. Among my clients, this solution seems to be very popular with medium to large corporations who have an Information Technology department to run their website. The World Wide Web uses a Hypertext Transfer Protocol (HTTP) to connect user programs (browsers) with web servers. Each HTTP request from a browser causes the server to return a response. That response includes a header, with a status code, and maybe some content such as a web page. Using the correct status codes can have a significant impact on search engine optimization. For instance, when you permanently move a page, if somebody goes to the old address, you want to make sure your server returns status code 301, Moved Permanently, with the new address for the page. This helps search engines and … [Read more...] about URL Rewriting & Custom Error Pages In ASP.NET 2.0
Anyone with a passion for technical SEO strives to have a deep understanding of a website’s architecture and aims to be very familiar with how Google relates to the URIs on a site. In my quest to be the best technical SEO I can be, I have discovered that by spending time doing deep analysis of site access logs, I can learn a great deal about how search engines understand the site. To that end, my favorite tool for this task is Splunk. Splunk is a fantastic hosted or cloud-based tool that allows you to parse large amounts of data quickly and easily to make important decisions. If you have ever tried sorting 10,000 rows in an Excel spreadsheet, you will understand the need for a tool like Splunk. For many websites, the free version of Splunk, which allows you to upload 500 MB per day, should be more than enough for you to analyze your site access logs. Here are the 7 ways I use Splunk to help me with technical SEO efforts: 1. Discover Whether A URL Has Been Crawled By Googlebot (Or … [Read more...] about 7 Ways To Use Splunk For Technical SEO
You and I are in the business of optimizing websites and helping businesses grow. And, as a reader of SEJ, you understand the importance of high performing websites to serve your web visitors. Things like page speed, the accuracy of keywords to content match, relevancy from links, overall user experience, call to action clicks and forms engagement. However, what I’ve seen over many years now is that most of the website optimization strategies begin with a technical audit. They miss the most obvious aspect of audits: the customer. Since we buy with emotion and justify with logic, let’s review an alternate, complimentary beginning. Tech is OK, But Not at First A fast page SEO audit will typically point out things like: Robots txt file use Sitemaps Title tags, meta description, headings 404 error pages Redirects Duplicate content Page speed analysis Schema markup Crawl errors Mobile friendliness Link neighborhoods Social platforms Domain and page authority Software Tools … [Read more...] about Convert Your Traffic Using Emotional SEO Audit