Errors can seriously damage your website’s SEO and page rank. You can lose some valuable traffic due to it. Mark of Marks Marketing Blog is giving tips to reduce the seo errors. Join in the awesome guest blogging club and take a look at our guest blogging guidelines.
There is an awful lot written about how to optimize your site in all the right ways; making sure you build back links and keywords and all that sort of stuff. But do you make a habit of checking for those little errors that might be undoing all the good work you have been putting in?
Broken links are the enemy of good SEO
Google is all about helping it’s users to find websites that are helpful and enjoyable to use, and users don’t tend to like it when they click on a link and they get the dreaded 404 error – ie, “page not found!” the link is broken.
As such, if Google is cruising around your site and it follows a broken link, your site is going to get marked down for that. Google doesn’t want to direct it’s users to sites that don’t work properly after all.
And images, they matter too
Images, and in fact, any media you can embed into your site, can all “break”. If google finds an image tag but the image itself isn’t where it should be, that’s not good either. I’m sure we’ve all been on sites and found the little icon you get when an image is broken…
How to prevent broken internal links
Sometimes these things will happen, pages move, typos happen and the bigger your site gets the more they will happen. But if you take some precautions, you can minimize the risk of broken links happening and save your precious SEO brownie points.
keep your sites link structure simple. This is perhaps only a little thing, but having a simple link structure will help to minimize mistakes and mis-types which can lead to broken links.
If you do move a page you will obviously change all the links, but just in case you forget, using a 301 re-direct in your HTACCESS file will ensure that any old links will be sent to the right place. This also preserves any page rank that page may have.
How to prevent broken external links
From time to time you will probably want to link to a site outside of yours, this is good, you should do. Unfortunately, you have no control over the other site you are linking to. If a site you link to goes down for any reason you might end up with broken links.
Be picky about who you link to
Do you ever link to sites that are related to a subject you are writing about without really checking that site out? When you are linking to a site you should be thinking carefully about how well maintained that site is. The question ultimately comes down to: is this a site that is still going to be here in 6 months, or a year? If you link to short term sites, which dis-appear a few months later, you end up with broken links and lost visitors.
Link to main pages
For similar reasons to the previous point, it is always helpful if you can link to main pages, the home page is most ideal, but category pages or other key pages work well too. Item pages and post pages get moved or deleted, home pages don’t.
Store your own images
Don’t use images hosted on another site, you never know when it might be taken down. If you are going to use an image, store it on your own site, that way you know that it will stay there.
Obviously, some of these suggestions aren’t always practical. You might be referencing a particular post for instance. Or maybe you review a brand new product with an uncertain future, you can’t really avoid linking to brand new websites all the time.
So the final tip is to be vigilant, constantly check through your website. There are plenty of link checking sites available, I like to make sure to check my site about once a month. If you follow all of the tips above, most of the time you will not find anything. But broken links will occasionally creep in, so make sure you spot them before Google does.