What is the crawl budget and learn how to manage it for large sites

What is the crawl budget and learn how to manage it for large sites

Managing the crawl budget is a process that involves managing the resources available to effectively and efficiently track all the pages and content of a large website.

It’s about balancing the crawling capacity of the search engine with the number of pages and resources you want to index. 

This practice can be challenging, but with proper planning and a clear strategy, it can be achieved effectively. Here are some steps to follow to manage your crawl budget for large sites:

Determine which pages are important and which should not be crawled

Prioritizing and identifying the most important and relevant pages on the site is essential. These pages are usually the ones with the highest traffic, those that generate the most conversions, or those that contain regularly updated content. The goal is to ensure that these pages are crawled frequently and thoroughly.

Here are some reasons why it is important:

  • About SEO. By establishing which pages should be crawled, you can ensure that search engines focus on relevant pages and avoid pages that provide no value. 
  • User experience. By preventing search engines from crawling certain pages, you can create a smoother and more satisfying experience for your users. 
  • Tracking efficiency. Search engine crawlers are limited in time and resources to crawl and index all pages on a website. 
  • Protection of confidential information. By blocking tracking of pages that contain sensitive information, such as users’ personal data, they can protect users’ privacy and security.

Manage duplicate content

Managing duplicate content is crucial when managing the crawl budget for large sites because:

Reduced tracking time

Search engines like Google allocate a limited crawl budget to each website . If there is a large amount of duplicate content on the site, the crawl budget will be depleted quickly and this can lead to important parts of the site not being crawled or updated properly. 

Performance optimization

Duplicate content can negatively affect the performance of a website. If there are multiple versions of the same content, it can cause confusion for search engines about which version to display in search results. 

Avoid Search Engine Penalties

Search engines penalize websites that have intentionally or unethically duplicate content. These penalties can negatively affect the site’s visibility and ranking in search results. 

Improve user experience

Users value the originality and relevance of content. If they find duplicate content on a website, they are likely to leave the site and look for information elsewhere. 

Also Read: SEO for ecommerce: keys to position your online store

Block crawling of unimportant URLs using Robots.txt and tell Google which pages it can crawl

Some pages on the site may have less relevance or value, such as those with discontinued or duplicate products. Limiting crawling on these pages can help save crawl budget and resources. This can be done through the robots.txt file, “noindex” tagging, or setting the crawl rate in the sitemap XML file.

The robots.txt file is a useful tool for controlling crawlers’ access to different parts of the site . It is advisable to review and optimize this file to ensure that crawlers are primarily focused on the most important pages.

Long redirect chains

It is recommended to avoid long redirect chains and ensure that redirects are done correctly and efficiently, thus minimizing their negative effects on website performance. Some of these can be site slowdown, loss of links, indexing issues, SEO penalties, and an unfriendly user experience.

Using HTML

HTML is primarily used to structure and present content on websites, so it is not suitable for crawl budget management for large sites. Crawl budget refers to the number of pages or resources that a search engine will crawl on a website in a given period.

For crawl budget management on large sites, it is more appropriate to use specific tools and techniques such as configuring crawl files (such as the robots.txt file), managing crawl frequency (using crawl directives and HTTP headers ) and tracking tracking using log analysis tools.

Make sure your web pages load quickly and offer a good user experience

To do this, you will need to take into account the following elements:

  • Optimize file sizes .
  • Use a reliable hosting service.
  • Uses caching technologies.
  • Minimize the use of redirects.
  • Avoid excessive use of plugins and scripts.
  • Use a CDN (content delivery network).
  • Test the loading speed of your website.
  • Efficient design and layout.

Have useful content 

Remember that useful content not only helps your visitors, but also builds a good reputation for your website and your brand. It is important to dedicate time and effort to creating quality content that truly adds value to your users.

Beware of tracking errors

Crawl errors are problems that can occur when search engines attempt to collect information from a website to index in their search results. These errors can negatively affect a website’s visibility and ranking in search engines. 

Keep sitemaps up to date

Keeping sitemaps up to date is essential to make it easier for users to navigate , improve user experience, help search engines, enable efficient navigation, and make changes and updates more efficiently. 

Additionally, it makes it easier for search engines to crawl and index your content, which can improve your site’s visibility in search results.

Build a good site structure

A well-planned site structure makes it easier to make updates and changes in the future. This may include adding new sections or pages , modifying navigation, or revising the site architecture. Without a good site structure, making these changes can be complicated and time-consuming.

Internal linking

It is a crucial factor in optimizing a website. It refers to the practice of linking pages within the same website, so that users can easily navigate from one section to another.

Internal linking has important value for navigation , user experience, search engine indexing, and authority distribution on a website. It is a practice that should not be overlooked if you want to optimize a website for better results.

Always Read: Best SEO plugins for WordPress

Always monitor crawl statistics

Monitoring crawl statistics is critical to evaluating the effectiveness of any crawl strategy, whether business or personal. Here are some reasons why it is important to monitor crawl statistics:

  • Accuracy evaluation .
  • Problem identification.
  • Efficiency optimization.
  • Informed decision making .
  • Track progress.

In short, managing the crawl budget for large sites requires careful strategy and a focused approach on the most important pages. Using tools and techniques such as the robots.txt file, staggered crawl strategy, and site structure optimization can help maximize available resources and ensure efficient crawling.