Google Rendering Audit with @mikeginleyseo #vcbuzz

Google Rendering Audit with @mikeginleyseo #vcbuzz

Technical SEO may seem intimidating but in reality there are many parts of it that can be easily understood and even performed in-house.

One of such tasks is Google rendering audit which is an important SEO task that sounds more challenging than it really is.

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About @mikeginleyseo

Mike Ginley @mikeginleyseo is a digital marketing consultant who is results-focused technical SEO experienced in enterprise B2B and B2C websites.

Mike specializes in technical SEO, international SEO, eCommerce SEO as well as data analysis, and data reporting through Google Data Studio to support omni-channel digital marketing consulting.

Questions we discussed

Q1 How did you become a digital marketer? Please share your career story!

I have always been interested in CS, but more so in business strategy. SEO helped combine both. There’s lots of logic, analysis and organization that goes into SEO, DM, Web Dev and all that. I love it!

Agency life is an amazing place to start, exposure to so much. You should never be bored! Always keep exploring the different areas, you never know where you’ll end up!

I have been very fortunate to work with a ton of great people. DM’s, Devs, Managers, etc. Without them, I wouldn’t be where I’m at today. Make relationships with your team, they are the difference-makers!!!

Q2 What is Google rendering (and what is it not) and why care?

Rendering is being able to properly understand a page and how it should be ranked. With rendering, Google can understand the UX and far more about what content should take priority. It is NOT just the ability to crawl the page or break down JS.

Rendering: The resources of the website are the ingredients (CSS, JS, Images, etc.) This all makes up the final dish (Render) We are the sous chefs, clean up and prep all these ingredients for the chef (Renderer) to finish.

If you give excessive/unnecessary ingredients, that may affect the final result > what gets indexed. “So, thats rendering in a nutshell. From “We have some HTML” to “We have potentially a bunch of pixels on the screen”.

Our job is to help solve the user’s problems, whatever they may be! To do that we need to ensure that the search engines can accurately breakdown and serve up our website. No tricks or gimmicks, just research, strategy & execution! 

Q3 How to perform Google rendering audit?

Tons of ways! Google Search Console is key! Look for key parts of the page, is google able to access them? If not why? What are the differences between the code shipped and the rendered HTML.

  • Are things taking too long?
  • Are resources blocked or failing to load?
  • Are too many resources being loaded?
  • CSR vs. SSR Try to eliminate any doubt that Google can render your site.

Again teamwork matters! The devs have intimate knowledge of the tech stack and what can/cannot be done. Create a relationship with your developers, they hold a ton of knowledge on the tech side, you hold knowledge on the marketing side. Marry those two.

Bring your findings from your rendering audit to the devs.

  • Concerns about missing content
  • Concerns about onclick links
  • Concerns about too many resources or how they are being loaded

Teach them about why these are important, come to a solution.

Always educate your team members! Helps so much in the long run.

Q4 Let’s talk about Google’s SITE: command and how else can it help identify possible SEO issues with the site?

One of the best tools out there! The main way to use the ‘site command’ is to check if your page is indexed. But there is a lot more!

You can also incorporate quotes to search for exact content – Think JS-dependent content. You can also do ‘inurl’ search to find duplicate or excessive versions of a page/content. Can be really useful to hunt down duplicate or excessive coverage of content.

Use it to check out the competition, what do they have indexed on a certain topic? Shout out @ahrefs for this handy list. Find out ways that work for your strategy!

Check it out.

Q5 What are your favorite technical SEO tools?

Tools are extremely important! Here are my favorite

  1. The computer between your ears. Do not blindly trust automated crawlers and findings. Take the insights, digest them, come to a conclusion using what you know and the expected impact.
  2. Google Search Console – if you don’t have this setup, do it right away!
  3. @screamingfrog – best crawling tool around, lots of functionality and the rendering tests are only getting better!
  4. @lumarhq formerly DeepCrawl – awesome enterprise crawling tool!
  5. @Merkle – lots of different tools for all types of SEO.
  6. @OnelyCom – Content + Tools (This crew is full of Tech SEO wizards).
  7. Chrome DevTools – So many different things you can do here, DOM manipulation, CWV edits, Overrides

You don’t need to spend crazy money on tools, there are plenty of free/inexpensive tools out there to help audit your site & its rendering. Just make sure you take care of the #1 tool ?

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