​The SEO technical hierarchy of needs

Jan 03, 2021

A “hierarchy of needs” is a visual representation of a theory in the shape of a triangle with the most important aspects at the bottom of the triangle and the least important at the top of the triangle. The needs at the bottom have to be fulfilled first and only after they have been met should one focus on the needs at the top of the triangle.

In this article, we are going to discuss the most important needs of SEO and what you should be focusing on in order to optimize your site’s SEO potential.

Below are the points you should be focusing on, listed from the most important to the added extras at the top:


Crawlability refers to the URL's ability to be picked up by search engine bots. It is important that your site’s URL is not forbidden to bots and that the URL is known to search engines (search engines find URLs by crawling links and reading sitemaps).

Sites that do not have crawlability may be visible to users but they will be invisible to bots which means that they won’t turn up in site results.


Next on the hierarchy is the URL’s ability to be indexed. URLs that can be indexed are ones that search engines can include in a catalog of pages that are available to be presented in search results pages.

Sites that have difficulty being indexed are ones with duplicate information, redirections, or canonical declarations.

Accessibility and website performance:

Server performance, HTTP status, JavaScript rendering, page depth in the site architecture, orphan pages, and the website’s resistance to spam and hacking all fall under this category. A site may be crawlable and indexable, however, the performance of the website may prohibit bots from being able to crawl the site.

It is important that one ensures that the site meets at least the minimum requirements for accessibility and website performance.


Lastly, at the very tip of the triangle, is clickability. This is where one would focus on having the public physically click the link and go to the site. Many people focus on this aspect of SEO before focusing on the backend side, which may be a contributing factor as to why some sites are not operating at full SEO potential.

All of these elements are important and each one should be focused on. The needs at the bottom of the triangle need to be met first and the rest can follow on in order to produce a healthy and well-functioning site.

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