Have you taken control of your organic search traffic? Through SEO, organic search can become a major driver of revenue from your website. The problem is, many enterprise websites are only operating at about half their potential.
It’s easy to assume that, since your website looks good that it is good, but search engines don’t see our websites like we see them.
- Do you know how many URLs are really on your website? (The number is probably higher than you think)
- Do you know what words your audience is using to find your website?
- Do you know how your website is performing on key dates throughout the year? (ex: Black Friday)
The size and complexity of enterprise websites create some common issues. We’re going to walk you through some of those and how they can be fixed to improve your search engine performance.
1. Help Google find your most important content
Did you know that Google ignores about half of all content on enterprise websites?
The culprit is often the sheer size and complexity of enterprise websites, combined with Google’s finite time and resources.
In order to get through the massive amount of content on the web, Google has a budget. This budget determines how long they will spend crawling the resources on each website before moving on. This budget is what causes Google to miss about half of an enterprise website’s content. They simply don’t have the resources to go through it all (and to be fair, many websites aren’t making it easy for Google to access their important content).
But that also means there’s massive opportunity for enterprises that optimize for crawl budget. You can do that by:
- Reducing non-compliant pages, such as pages with bad HTTP status codes (ex: 404 errors)
- Using robots.txt to block the parts of your website that don’t belong in Google
- Improving your page speed
- Reorganizing your internal linking structure
- Keeping content fresh and not letting it go stale
Basically, you want to remove anything that stands in the way of Google crawling your website. Removing these barriers can help direct Google find all your important pages, which is essential if you want those pages to rank in search engines and bring traffic to your website!
3. As an Enterprise website, your internal linking is a goldmine — use it wisely
Every enterprise website will have a lot of content — it’s easy to lose track of it all. In fact, do you know how many total URLs are on your website? The answer might surprise you! Because there’s so much content, sometimes it gets orphaned, meaning it’s not linked to anywhere on your site.
When there are no or very few links to a page, search engines may have difficulty finding it, your visitors won’t be able to find it, and the page likely will not perform as well due to less authority being passed to it.
Adding links to your important pages has the following benefits:
- Helps with the flow of PageRank, passing link authority to other pages on your website
- Helps Google crawl your website
- Helps people better navigate your content, providing a better user experience for your search engine visitors
When you link to other important pages on your website, everyone wins.
4. Make your pages load faster
You only have a few seconds before you lose a website visitor’s attention, which is why slow-loading web pages are often the culprit for high bounce rates.
And as it turns out, your visitors aren’t the only ones who won’t stick around long if your pages load slowly. Remember Google’s crawl budget? Slow-loading web pages mean that Google will get to fewer pages when it comes time to crawl your website.
Some of the biggest culprits of slow speeds on enterprise websites are:
- Images that haven’t been sized or compressed appropriately
- Unnecessary scripts or synchronous loading
Finding the culprit of slow load times is a necessary prerequisite to improving speed, so make sure you have a tool that can help you diagnose page load time performance.
5. Create a great mobile experience
Google rolled out its mobile-friendly update in April 2015, which meant they would be boosting the ranking of mobile-friendly pages on mobile search results.
There are a few different ways you can make your website mobile friendly:
- Responsive web design: Your URL and HTML stays the same from device-to-device, but the page “responds” to fit different screen sizes.
- Dynamic serving: Your URL stays the same, but generates a different HTML based on the device being used to view the page.
- Separate URLs: Your URL and HTML are different from device-to-device.
- Optimize content for mobile searchers: Mobile users search differently than desktop users.
Many websites also started making use of AMP technology, which can make mobile loading incredibly fast.
If your enterprise website employs a mobile-friendly framework (and it should!), make sure you haven’t fallen victim to any of these common mobile mistakes:
- Some of your page assets aren’t accessible to all Googlebot user-agents.
- The mobile versions of your web pages lack parity with the desktop versions of those pages. When your website moves over to the mobile-first index, and Google starts ranking your pages based on their mobile version, you may lose organic visibility.
- You have separate URLs for mobile and desktop, but are not properly indicating the alternate or canonical versions of your pages.
To do this, you’ll need a tool for mobile SEO audits.
6. Produce high-quality content
Thin or duplicate content that adds little or no unique value can hurt your search engine performance as a whole, but it’s difficult to keep track of content on a large website, which is why enterprises typically suffer from this issue.
On enterprise websites, duplicate content is often created by:
- Sorting and filtering URLs that just reorganize but don’t change the page content
- URLs with tracking parameters appended to them
- Content that is located in more than one location
Thin content can happen when there’s little unique content relative to the page template content. On large enterprise websites, this could be caused by things like archives or categories with only one entry.
Not only will you want to handle thin or duplicate content by canonicalizing it, removing it, or no-indexing it, you’ll also need to produce high-quality content. To do this, you’ll need to understand how real searchers are looking for what you offer and create content that thoroughly answers their questions.
7. Write descriptive titles, descriptions, and headings
The sheer volume of URLs on an enterprise level website makes it difficult to write unique titles and descriptions for every single page.
The same can go for the main heading (“H1 tag”) on the page itself.
To solve for this, some enterprise websites use a programmatic “templated” solution, but this can create duplicates that harm search engine performance if you’re not careful.
Google looks at HTML elements like title tags and headings to determine whether a page is relevant for a particular query, so having a duplicate or non-descriptive element can cause your performance to suffer. Also, since title tags and meta descriptions are what searchers see before they click, how they’re written can also affect how much traffic you get.
To make sure titles, descriptions, and headings are unique and descriptive on a large website, you’ll need a tool that can crawl your website at scale and point out any issues.
A scalable solution for maintaining an SEO-friendly enterprise website
It’s difficult to achieve an SEO friendly website that drives revenue from organic search if you don’t have a high-performing SEO professional or team to help. Botify has had the privilege of working with some of the most SEO-mature organizations and seen how they do it, so if you’ve ever asked questions such as:
- How big should my SEO team be?
- Where does SEO belong in our org chart?
- What should an enterprise SEO’s responsibilities & KPIs be?
Then we encourage you to read A Day In The Life Of An Enterprise SEO on the Botify blog.
It’s also difficult to achieve an SEO friendly website if you don’t have an enterprise-grade solution. You might not even know whether these issues exist.
Botify adds transparency to the search process so you can identify where you might need to improve to achieve good website hygiene and start maximizing the revenue you can get from organic search.
Come see what we’re all about! Book your demo today.