How we help with SEO
We mainly get involved with technical SEO, which covers optimizing your website or webshop for search engine crawling and indexing, as well as other technical processes that help improve your search presence and performance. (You can read exactly what we do further below.)
Technical SEO goes hand-in-hand with content SEO, where you optimize the actual content of your site by doing keyword research (so that you know which words/terms people are using when they search for your products or services), writing good page titles and descriptions, etc.
This is something that requires language expertise and sometimes cultural knowledge, so we don’t offer content SEO except in English. We can also work with your SEO agency (if you have one) in optimizing your website or webshop.
The following describes the scope of SEO assistance that you can get from your development team at 1902 Software.
New websites or webshops
When we develop new websites or webshops, we implement certain SEO best practices or standards by default (unless otherwise agreed with you). This ensures that your site is optimized for crawling and indexing—and in turn, search engine ranking—as soon as it goes live.
(Note: Implementing the following strategies does not guarantee an immediate improvement in your Google ranking —often, it takes several months before you start to see results. Also note that technical SEO alone doesn’t ensure a high position in search results, as Google also considers the quality and relevance of your actual content in determining search ranking.)
During development, we set up:
- SEO plugins or extensions – There are many plugins available online that can help you manage your on-page SEO better. If you need a functionality not available in a commercial extension, we can develop it for you. (For Umbraco, we have developed 1902 SEO+, a free package that covers the basics that you need for managing SEO.)
- Robots.txt – This is a file placed on your website that sets out which pages should be crawled and indexed, and which ones should be ignored.
- Canonical links – Setting up a canonical link helps prevent duplicate content issues that can hurt your SEO.
- Hreflang – For multilingual sites, this tag tells Google which language you’re using on a page.
- Schema – Schema markup helps search engines understand your content better and is most of the time required (but not a guarantee) for your pages to appear in rich results. Depending on the project, we may either implement schema by code or, (if there’s one available) set up a third-party plugin that will handle schema markup on your site.
- We also help review your URL structure to ensure that it complies with the latest best practices from Google. A good URL structure helps Google understand your site better, which can help improve your search ranking and performance.
Before live deployment
Before live deployment, we crawl the site using ScreamingFrog to identify and fix issues relating to:
- Broken links – redirects, 404s, and server errors
- Incorrect URL structures – URLs with special characters, underscores, or uppercase letters
- Page titles and descriptions – missing, duplicate, or multiple tags
- Content structure – no H1 on page or broken structure
- Canonicals – missing or multiple tags
- Images – large file sizes and missing alt texts
- Insecure content – http content mixed with your https site
- Open graph meta tags – for Facebook, Twitter and LinkedIn
Upon publishing, we help with:
- Setting up 301 redirects – If you update the URL of a page, we set up a 301 redirect from the old URL to the new one, so that it can be re-indexed by Google without losing its original ranking. It also helps ensure that anyone who previously bookmarked the page will continue to be sent to that page even if the URL has changed.
Aside from these on-page optimizations, we also help with third-party tools such as:
- Initial setup – If you don’t already have one, we encourage you to set up a Google Analytics account so you can track data on your site traffic.
- Custom events – These are custom tracking that are not “on” by default in Google Analytics, such as e-commerce, conversions, and scroll-depth tracking, as applicable to your site.
- IP exclusion – We exclude our IPs (and yours, as applicable) in Analytics tracking so you can get a more accurate traffic data by not including your own traffic and ours.
- Initial setup – As with Google Analytics, we encourage you to set up Search Console as it provides data about your site’s search presence and performance.
- Sitemap – Search Console enables you to submit a sitemap for faster and more efficient indexing of your pages.
- New pages for indexing – If you have a newly published page, we submit the URL to Search Console so it can get indexed faster for search results.
Google Tag Manager
- Initial setup – Google Tag Manager helps in managing tracking pixels and scripts without the need to modify your site’s code. We help set this up for you as well as any third-party scripts that you may need for your marketing.
If you continue to use us after the project for support and maintenance, we can keep an eye on the most obvious SEO issues in your site that may appear over time.
You can also discuss with your Project Manager if you want us to do an SEO audit on a regular basis after your new website or webshop has been deployed.
Existing websites or webshops
When we take over existing websites or webshops developed by another company, our default technical SEO assistance (as described above) is limited to the new pages or features that we will design or develop unless you otherwise ask us to review the rest of the site.
We will, of course, point out any obvious issues that we come across with in the course of our working for you —but we suggest that you let our QA team do an SEO audit to ensure that your site is properly optimized.
Content SEO guide
1902 SEO+ is a free Umbraco package for managing technical SEO settings in your website. Read more details and download the package here.