Eliminate Potential SEO Problems: Crawl Staging Servers Before Going Live
When creating and implementing your SEO strategy in your website, it’s important to crawl the staging servers to identify potential problems with your SEO before you allow your website to go live. If you are new to this and unsure of what to do, here’s how to begin:
Before you begin, understand what your staging server uses- some staging servers rely on basic authentication while others rely on different elements like VPN access for custom user agent creation. Once you know what your staging server relies on, things would be easier to work through without causing problems for yourself.
If it’s basic authentication that your staging server uses, things are slightly more convenient since most popular crawling tools are able to support this particular method. Some popular crawling tools include DeepCrawl, Screaming Frog SEO Spider and more! However, if your staging server uses VPN access, make sure that you have been granted access and could connect through VPN first before attempting to crawl the server.
Make sure also to whitelist IP addresses that are relevant, especially when your staging platforms redirect other users to common pages before redirecting yet again. Redirects can be tricky to navigate with crawling tools so what you should do, is to make use of the platform and whitelist the IP address of the desired staging server. This will grant you the ability to create access for stage crawling and limit the period of time to do so.
Always double check the crawl data results you receive after each stage crawling and determine if you have enough information to finish your SEO analysis. Based on what you have received, it is recommended to continuously refine your crawl tool settings and continue crawling again. Determine areas that may eventually contribute to SEO problems by setting up crawl restrictions and report settings for faster and more accurate readings. As a good recommendation, make sure to perform stage crawling more than 3 times so as to sift out all possible factors that can contribute to SEO problems and think about ways to resolve them. Make the relevant changes to your site strategy and crawl again to determine if the problem can be prevented with those changes- it will be through continuous analysing that you attain the best results possible.