SEO Crawl Budget Best Practices

Rank Fire SEO

Written by Jeremy Earle, JD

February 28, 2022

Colorado Springs SEO Company

So how can you make the most of your crawling dollars? We’ve put up this handy advice to assist your website in being as search-engine-friendly as possible.

An important SEO element known as crawl budget is sometimes disregarded.

Because there are so many responsibilities and concerns that an SEO professional must deal with, many times, they are overlooked.

In a nutshell, the crawl budget can and should be improved.

What you’ll discover in this post is:

  • What you can do to increase your crawling budget as you go.
  • Examine how the crawl budget idea has evolved over several years.

What Is the Crawl Cost Percentage?

Here’s a little refresher for those of us who’ve had so much on our minds/worries/sweats that we’ve forgotten what crawl budget implies. You might think of crawl budget as the number of times a search engine’s crawlers (i.e., spiders and bots) visit your domain’s web pages.

It is thought of as a flimsy compromise between Googlebot’s need to avoid overcrowding your server and your domain’s general wish to be crawled by Google. You may take a series of actions to increase the number of times search engines robots visit your sites by optimizing your crawl budget.

The more often a user returns, the faster the most recent changes appear in the index.

As a result, it will take less time for your optimization efforts to take effect and begin affecting your rankings.

The language makes it seem like the essential thing we should be doing at any given time.

Not totally, of course.

Why Is Crawl Budget Optimization Not Prioritized? “

To find out, all you have to do is read Google’s official blog article. Crawling isn’t a ranking factor in and of itself, as Google makes clear.

As a result, some search engine optimization (SEO) experts don’t consider crawl spending. To many of us, “not my problem” means “not my issue.”

In my opinion, it is just incorrect.

Even if we ignore it, Gary Illyes’ remarks on Google are worth mentioning. Crawl budget management makes sense; he has said, for a large website with millions of pages.

In contrast, you don’t have to worry about the crawl budget if your domain is small. (It should be noted that if your site has millions and millions of pages, you may want to think about trimming some of the material to improve the overall performance of your domain.) SEO, on the other hand, is not a game where you can change one aspect and expect to see results.

SEO is a series of minor, incremental modifications that must be taken care of by a slew of different measures. In large part, our work is making certain that tens of thousands of minute details are as perfect as possible.

In addition, as Google’s John Mueller points out, while it isn’t a major component in crawling, it is beneficial for conversions and the general health of the website. In light of the above, I believe it is critical to ensure that nothing on your website intentionally harms your crawl budget.

Crawl Budget Optimization: What You Can Do Right Now

The relevance of certain things has shifted substantially to the point where they are no longer relevant at all. The “usual suspects” of website health still need to be addressed.

1. Permit Robots to crawl important pages on your website.Txt

First and foremost, this is a logical first step. This task may either be done manually or with the help of a website audit tool. When at all feasible, I favor the use of a tool. A tool is just more practical and efficient in this situation.

In a matter of seconds, you may enable or prevent the crawling of any page on your domain by simply adding your robots.txt to the tool of your choosing. Upload your updated document, and presto!

Anybody can accomplish it by hand. In my own experience, I know that with a big website where regular calibrations may be required, it’s far better to allow a tool to assist you.

2. Beware of Redirect Chains.

When it comes to website health, it’s just basic sense. Even a single redirect chain on the whole website would be ideal. 301 and 302 redirects are a certainty for a big website, and there’s no way around it.

While it’s OK to have a few of them on a page, a large number of them in a row might severely restrict a search engine’s crawl capacity. Even if a few redirections don’t do much harm, everyone needs to be aware of the risks.

3. Whenever possible, use HTML.

There has been an improvement in how Google’s crawler handles JavaScript, but it has also enhanced its ability to crawl and index Flash and XML. On the other hand, other search engines are still a long way off.

4. HTML is preferable wherever feasible.

As a result, you won’t jeopardize your prospects with any crawler. HTTP errors shouldn’t eat up your crawl budget. Crawl budgets are eroded by 404 and 410 errors. Even worse, they wreak havoc on the user experience!

So, correcting all 4xx and 5x status codes is a win-win scenario in every sense of the word! Again, I favour employing a website auditing tool in this situation. SEO specialists utilize SE Ranking and Screaming Frog to conduct a website audit.

5. Make Sure Your URL Parameters are Correct

Crawlers treat multiple URLs as different pages, resulting in wasted crawl money. If you tell Google about these URL parameters, you’ll save crawl money and avoid raising duplicate content issues; thus, it’s a win-win scenario.

Add them into your Google Search Console account if you haven’t already!

6. Sitemaps Should Be Updated Frequently

It’s a no-brainer to take care of your XML sitemap once again. It will be simpler for the bots to figure out where the internal connections are leading.

Your sitemap should only include canonical URLs. Make sure it matches the most recent version of robots.txt that has been submitted.

7. The Importance of Hreflang Tags

Crawlers use hreflang tags to examine your localized pages. In addition, you should be as explicit as possible when informing Google about translated versions of your content.

In the header of your website, begin by using the. An example of a supported language’s “lang code” is “lang code.” For each URL, you should utilize the loc> element. In that manner, the translated versions of a page may be pointed to.

Summary

Because of this, the answer to the question of whether or not crawl budget optimization is still necessary for your website is unequivocal “yes.” Every SEO practitioner should keep an eye on their crawl budget, as it has been and most likely will be in the future.

Use these suggestions to maximize your crawl budget and boost your search engine rankings.

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