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The Effect of Web Technologies on SEO

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As the internet has developed and grown, so has the effect of web technologies on SEO changed over the years. There is no doubt that web technologies have the ability to boost or hinder search engine results. Therefore, to make sure and continue to rank well in the search results, marketers need to take into consideration the influence of new and old technologies.

When Google started dominating internet searches and results, it was fairly easy for marketers to ranks for specific keywords. They could employ a mixture of so-called ‘white hat’ and ‘black hat’ techniques to influence search engine results and push competition further down the results page. However, in order to boost user experience (and probably their own profits), Google introduced various algorithms that took more factors into account than just keyword density and the number of backlinks.

New Technologies Boost SEO

One of these changes happened in 2010 when Google announced that it was now taking page speed into account as a ranking factor. This forced many internet marketers to start using newer web technologies like file compression to speed up page load speeds and avoid a drop in rankings. This also required a rethink on the use of JavaScript (JS), CSS and HTML length when constructing web pages.

However, Google has also had to review the way it indexes sites that use JavaScript. Because many websites use JavaScript technology (and it seems that JS is here to stay), Google had to come up with ways to index the content on pages rendered with JavaScript. Recent advances in new web technologies like Progressive Web Apps, Firebase, and Facebook’s use of JavaScript MVW Frameworks have made sure that these technologies only enhance a user’s experience and help to boost SEO.

The push to make pages load faster has also meant that marketers have even had to re-think their hosting service providers and how to mark up pages for an international audience. Even if you have a well-designed website that uses file compression and the latest JS technologies, if you have a poor hosting company, your SEO efforts will be hampered. Some industry analysists have pointed out that if you are on shared hosting with spammy websites, your website could also take a hit in the search engine results. It’s the old adage of ‘birds of a feather….’

When it comes to server location and IP address, the picture isn’t so clear if this will help or hinder your SEO. A lot depends on the type of business you run and where your target audience is. If you have a non-country specific domain like ‘.com’ and you want to target users from a specific country, it makes sense that your IP address is from that country. However, if you have a country-specific domain name and you mark up your site appropriately, then server location and IP address may not affect your rankings at all.

Technologies that can hinder SEO

One technology that has seen a drop in popularity and could actually harm your SEO marketing efforts is the use of Flash technology. Once hailed as new technology to bring users a greater web experience, flash has become a major annoyance for web designers. There are a few reasons for this. One is the development of HTML5 has made Flash almost useless. The other reason is the surge in internet users using mobiles devices to search for content. Most mobile devices don’t support flash, and with Google’s drive to phase in it ‘mobile-first index’, sites that continue to use flash will take a hit in their search results.

It is clear that new and emerging technologies will continue to impact on SEO. As technology develops and the way users interact with the web changes, it becomes even more important to make sure that your website keeps up with the latest developments. This means that at the very least, your site uses secure web pages (HTTPS), follows Google’s guidelines on canonical tags, uses markup on web pages, and has clear site navigation. This is the best way to make sure that new and emerging technologies continue to boost your SEO efforts. 


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