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What’s your language? JavaScript checklist in technical SEO audit

6 minutes of reading
What’s your language? JavaScript checklist in technical SEO audit
Category SEO

If you’re in charge of the technical aspects of your website’s SEO, you need to know how JavaScript affects your search rankings and why its implementation has changed over time. It’s also critical that you understand when JavaScript usage could be penalizing your site and how to avoid that outcome in the future. In this guide to JavaScript in the technical audit, we’ll look at all of these topics in depth so you can make more informed decisions as you build or rebuild your website.


What is JavaScript?

JavaScript is a programming language that can be used to add interactivity and other features to websites. It’s one of the three main technologies used in web development, along with HTML and CSS. JavaScript was originally developed for use in designing the user interface (UI) on web pages. Today, it has grown into an integral part of most websites, powering interactive content like video players and animation effects.

The popularity of JavaScript makes it important for technical SEO audits because there are many things about how this technology functions that could affect rankings and search visibility.

How to check what language was my website written in?

There are a few different ways that you can check what language your website was written in. One way is to look at the source code of your website. If you see JavaScript code, then your website was likely written in JavaScript. Another way to check is to use a tool like Google’s PageSpeed Insights. If you see that your website is flagged for having render-blocking JavaScript, then it’s likely that your website was written in JavaScript.

Connections between JavaScript and SEO

Search Engine Optimization is the practice of improving the ranking of a website on search engines. The higher the ranking, the more likely people are to find the site. A technical audit can help identify ways that a site can rank better with search engines like Google and Bing. A key part of this audit includes evaluating how well-optimized JavaScript is for the search engine crawlers.

Why? Because JavaScript has a huge impact on your optimization strategy. To be honest it is a complicated relationship. On one hand, it can make your site more dynamic and engaging for users, which can lead to better SEO. On the other hand, if not used correctly, JavaScript can create problems for search engines when trying to index your site. That’s why audit is so important.

What page elements and ranking factors can JavaScript affect?

When it comes to optimization, there are a few key things to keep in mind. First, JavaScript can affect both on-page elements like title tags and meta descriptions, as well as off-page factors like link building and social signals. Additionally, it can also impact your site’s speed and performance, which are both important ranking factors. And finally, it’s important to make sure that your site is accessible to both search engines and users, regardless of whether or not they have JavaScript enabled.

50 shades of JavaScript

Pros of JS

  • It can help you automate repetitive tasks.
  • It can give you insights into how a website’s code is structured and can identify potential issues that could be affecting a website’s search engine optimization.
  • It can make your website more interactive and engaging for users.
  • It can also help you create a more responsive and fast website, which is important for both users and search engines.
  • It can be used to implement structured data on your website, which can help your site rank better in search results.

Cons of JS

  • If your site uses JavaScript, Google may not be able to crawl and index all of your content.
  • It can slow down page loading times, it could negatively impact your site’s performance.
  • Certain types of JavaScript can create security vulnerabilities on your site.
  • It is not universally supported by browsers. If you want everyone who visits your site to have an optimal experience, using JavaScript may limit accessibility for some users.

How to create an SEO-friendly website with JavaScript?

Step 1: Basics

Pages created with the use of JavaScript require the implementation of all key elements of on-page and off-page positioning. First of all, make sure to match meta tags and keywords, create a friendly URL, optimize titles and content layout, multimedia and ALT tag, internal linking.

Have you heard of React Helmet? This is a library that helps manage and manipulate the document head, making it easy to add, remove, and change tags. Plus, it is great for creating dynamicMeta tags that can be changed on the fly.

Step 2: Indexing

Allow access to resources on your website. Search engine robots must have access to it in order for it to be positively carried out through the entire process. It is a good idea to create a robots.txt file and put the “allow” metric in it.

Step 3: Rel=canonical

One of the most common problems identified during an audit in the case of JavaScript is duplicate content. It is recommended that you use a canonical tag to choose the best version for the indexing process.

Step 4: 404 error code

When using JavaScript, you cannot automatically report a page error to the server. If an incorrect link appears during the audit, use the noidex tag. This will be treated as a soft spurious error as the code returned will have a status of 200 OK.

Step 5: Page loading

You already know that JavaScript can slow page loading, which results in a lower ranking. However, this can be solved by using lazy loading or suspense tactics.

Lazy loading is a technique for loading resources on demand. That means that instead of loading all resources when the page first loads, only the resources that are needed are loaded. This can improve performance because it reduces the amount of data that needs to be downloaded and parsed by the browser.

Suspense loading is when a web page loads some content immediately, while other content is loaded later. The goal is to make sure that the later-loading content doesn’t interfere with the search engine’s ability to index the page.

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In conclusion

JavaScript can be a powerful tool for SEO, but it must be used carefully and strategically. When auditing a website, be sure to check that all JavaScript is properly implemented and that there are no potential issues that could hurt the site’s ranking. With careful planning and execution, it can be a valuable asset in any technical audit. If you’re not comfortable coding, or if you don’t have the time to learn, then it’s probably best to leave JS to the experts.

Aleksandra Pietrzak
Curator at the National Museum in Poznań, graduate of Art History at the Jagiellonian University and Contemporary Art at the Pedagogical University of Krakow, curator of exhibitions and author of scientific and popular texts. A lover of contemporary art, literature and travel.
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