As its name implies, server-side rendering (SSR) happens when the rendering process occurs directly on the server. After rendering, the final HTML web page is then delivered to the browser, where visitors can view it and bots can crawl it.
Server-side rendering is considered a good choice for SEO because it can reduce content loading times and prevent layout shifts. The server-side approach also helps ensure all of your elements actually render, and client-side technology doesn’t ignore them.
Because the browser itself needs to handle the rendering load, client-side rendering is generally slower than server-side rendering. This can cause obvious SEO issues since page speed is one of many technical SEO signals that Google uses to rank pages. Furthermore, slower load speeds can also increase bounce rate, and while bounce rate may not be a signal itself, a high one could be indicative of a poor browsing experience and frustrated site visitors. If you’re looking to increase site speed, moving away from client-side rendering might not be a bad idea.
Static rendering, also known as pre-rendering, involves generating the HTML content for a page during the build or deployment process rather than at runtime. The pre-rendered HTML files are then served directly to the browser or client upon request.
The pre-rendered HTML files are easily crawlable by search engine bots, enabling better indexing of the website’s content. Additionally, static rendering can significantly improve page loading times since the content is already present in the HTML file and doesn’t require additional rendering on the client side.
Which Type of Rendering Is Best for SEO?
2. Follow On-Page SEO Best Practices
3. Use Effective Internal Links
4. Stay Away From Hashes in URLs
SPA (single-page applications) can use fragmented URLs to load different views. However, Google wants web admins to avoid using hashes in fragmented URLs, suggesting that you shouldn’t count on them to work with Googlebot. Instead, they recommend using the History API to load different content based on URL.
5. Use Lazy-Loading Images
Lazy-loading is the practice of delaying the loading of less-important or non-visible page assets. It’s common for optimizing performance and UX. But if you’re not careful about what you delay and how you do it, you may end up with indexing issues.
Googlebot doesn’t scroll when looking at content; it just resizes its viewport. This means scripted scroll events may not trigger, and content may not get rendered. Google suggests several different ways to make sure all content on your page is loaded when lazy-loading.
It’s probably best to leave lazy-loading for your images. Lazy-loading content is risky since it may time out and end up not getting indexed.
6. Fix Duplicate Content
7. Run Regular Site Audits
Testing and Troubleshooting
Similarly, Google’s URL Inspection Tool provides you with a screenshot of how Googlebot sees your pages so you can visually inspect its elements. It also displays the index status of your pages so you can quickly spot if one of your script-heavy pages hasn’t been indexed and may require attention.
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