Many webmasters are confused when it comes to the role of a website theme in the SEO process. Questions about whether a website's theme can affect its SEO ranking are quite common in SEO forums. In this article, we will analyze this question in detail and will see how a website's theme can affect its SEO ranking.
Things that a Theme can affect
A website theme serves as the frame of a website and affects its aesthetics, functionality, and how various elements of the website interact with each other. Among other things, a website theme can affect how the content is displayed, how pages are internally linked with each other, how quickly do the pages load, and how structured data is used. So, we can pretty safely assume that changing a website's theme will affect the SEO of the website and may lead to a change in the SEO rankings of a site.
What you should do
If you want to change the theme of your website, then it's a good idea to first test this on a dummy website. Install the new theme that you want to install on your website and check how the new theme displays your dummy website. Also, make sure to check out the HTML generated by the theme as it can have a dramatic impact on the internal structure of a site and thus affect the SEO of the site. Make sure that you turn off the indexing for this dummy website. You can populate the test site using content from your existing site or use dummy content for it.
You can also seek further help by going through the Google SEO Starter Guide or from Google Search Console Testing tools. Knowledge of basic HTML will go a long way if you want to understand the changes induced by a website theme change. If you don't know HTML yourself, then seek the help of someone who can understand HTML.
You can use the search console testing tools to check the dummy pages created by you using the new website theme and compare them with the pages that you have on the real website. This will allow you to see in real-time how the two themes work and will help greatly in zeroing on the better one.
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