Just as a minor tooth decay can cause major problems, similarly a minor SEO error can affect the ranking of your dental website. While you may have taken utmost care to ensure that your website is SEO error free, it is always better to carry out an SEO audit periodically to prevent these errors. Below is a list of 7 common technical problems that may be harming your website. Continue reading further to know more about these technical problems and how to fix SEO issues for your dental website.
In order to get traffic to your website organically, it should show up on Google search. To find out if there’s any issue in indexing, go to Google search and type “site:yourwebsitename.com”.The search result will display the number of pages that Google ranks. Once you get the results, you need to analyze whether the result shows the approximate number of pages that you expected, are there any pages that should not be seen or if there are any pages that are missing. Based on your analysis, do the following:
Check your subdomains to figure out why there is an indexing problem.
If you had an old website that is being indexed now instead of redirecting it to the new website, then you can make the changes to your website.
Lastly, if your website was hacked, check for any spam by undertaking a deeper search into your website.
2. Robot.txt File and Meta Robots NOINDEX
Another common technical mistake is the “/” character that is incorrectly placed in the robots.txt file. Usually, a developer may make this mistake of not changing the robots.txt file once you redevelop your dental website. This SEO error might have cost you customers from visiting your website organically. So how do you spot this error? Type “yourwebsitename.com/robots.txt” on Google search. If the result shows “User-agent: * Disallow: /”, then there is an error in your robots.txt file. Ask your developer why it is showing “Disallow: /” because either he might have kept it for a specific reason or he might have forgotten to change it.
In the case of NOINDEX directive, it removes all your webpages that have this configuration unlike an error configured robots.txt where it won’t pull your webpages out of Google’s index. Usually, NOINDEX is set up when your dental website is in the development stage. Ask your developer to check if there’s NOINDEX configuration for your website and remove it once your website is live. However, there can be some other reasons why NOINDEX configuration may not be removed in certain cases. So get it clarified with your developer. You can do a manual check by viewing the source code of your dental webpage and find any one of the following information.
<META NAME=”ROBOTS” CONTENT=”NOINDEX, FOLLOW”>
<META NAME=”ROBOTS” CONTENT=”INDEX, NOFOLLOW”>
<META NAME=”ROBOTS” CONTENT=”NOINDEX, NOFOLLOW”>
Most of the time, it should be “INDEX, FOLLOW” and nothing else. If you find any of the above-mentioned information, then take corrective action. Moreover, you can avoid this error by keeping a reminder to check your website after any new upgrade or schedule your website audit with an SEO auditor software tool.
3. Broken Backlinks
Check your dental site for any broken links. You can do this with the help of Google Search Console or some backlink checker tools. In Search Console, it will review your top 404 errors and then prioritize these errors by broken links. Due to a website migration, some of your important webpages can become 404 webpages. This means that the backlinks for these pages are broken. The broken backlinks can be redirected to your best webpages by 301 Redirect permanently. In order to be alert of any new broken links, you can either set up a recurring website crawl or manually check your website on a periodic basis.
If your dental website accepts online payments or passwords, then it should be secure. When your customer visits your website and finds out that it is not a safe web connection to browse, he may return back from your website. Thus, you may lose out on a customer. Moreover, Google has planned to mark all HTTP websites as non-secure. It may even give more preference in ranking the HTTPS websites higher than the HTTP websites. So if you do not have an HTTPS dental website, then make sure that you take action at the earliest. Furthermore, ensure that your webpages resolve to HTTPS version of your website as well.
5. Internal Links
Internal links can affect your website’s crawlability from search engine spiders and so it is critical to have a good internal linking structure especially, for large websites. Some of the things you need to consider when planning your internal linking structure include:
Using anchor text
Internal linking relating to the main website navigation
Scalable internal linking by using plugins
With the help of website auditor tools, you can organize your webpages through the internal link count. Find out opportunities on your websites, to add internal links. Therefore, when you come up with a new webpage, for your dental website try to understand where you can link it. For example, if you come up with a service page for dental veneers, then you add the page link to your blog posts that talk about dental veneers.
Google Search takes even the little difference in your URL address into consideration for SEO purpose. So, if you have a URL that is ‘www.dentalservice.com’, then stay consistent with the same URL throughout all the links in your website. Do not keep any other variations such as “dentalservice.com”, “dentalservice.com/home.html” or “www.dentalservice.com/home.html.” In the case of inconsistency, Google may index a mixed assortment of your URL versions and hence, cause complexities and confusion. So what should you do? You can manually enter in multiple versions of your home page on the browser to find out if they all resolve to the one URL. Also, you can use “site:” tool on Google to find out which version of your webpages are indexing.
If your website takes some time to load, then this is a serious technical issue for you. Although Google does not place much emphasis on the speed, it does form a small part of its search algorithm. Another reason to have a better speed is for your customers. Imagine your customer who is looking for an emergency dental service online and once he clicks through your website, it takes some time to load the entire webpage or takes time to go back and forth between different webpages. Such a customer would rather move out of your website and go to another dental website that is quick to load and provide the required information. Moreover, the use of smartphone has placed more emphasis on websites to load within seconds. Therefore, one of the best technical SEO strategies is to make your websites faster. You can measure the speed of your website through SEO auditing tools. Also, another factor that you can take into consideration is to have content that is small in size so that your webpage loads faster.
These are some of the technical SEO problems that may take place on your dental websites. Ensure that you conduct an SEO audit to fix SEO issues. Your websites may also have some other problems relating to XLM sitemaps, meta refresh, text in images and others that can affect the traffic to your websites. All these problems are not easily identifiable and by the time you fix SEO issues, you may have already lost on multiple clients. Hence, if you are unable to manage your dental clinic SEO, then it is recommended that you take the help of a professional SEO firm.
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