A website audit is a complete overhaul and examination of your site whether you’re falling short in ranking, speed, or security. There are lots of audits you can do for your site and one of them is the systematic examination of your SEO by identifying current issues and necessary fix-its for optimization opportunities. So, why get an SEO audit?
An effective SEO audit will reveal the problems and weaknesses in your SEO strategy as it performs technical analysis in both on-page and off-page practices.
Why you need an SEO audit
It’s critical to assess your website with insights to tell you what’s working on your SEO strategy. SEO audits are measurement variables for active actions on how you can boost your site to rank higher.
Compliant to Google and other search engines’ algorithm
Search engines update their algorithms regularly. They have certain guidelines on what SEO should be for the current season. It’s important to know these updates and make changes to your site pronto. For example, Google changed its meta description characters to 320 – then back again to 160.
General SEO practices change
SEO changes every year. Right now, we give importance to quality content than just keywords, fast webpage speed, good mobile optimization, and user experience. This year, search engines, especially Google, would likely want a website owner to use structured data as possible. More so, there have been talks that voice optimization with Google will be a thing in the near future. So, stay up!
You have an outdated content
Ever found out whether your content is no longer useful in 2019? If you’re reviewing restaurants, and your users found out that business is long gone and closed, they’ll be turned off of the idea that your list doesn’t apply to the current status of today’s society. Or how about a product that you’re no longer selling? Or a blog post that’s long outdated? Remember to keep your content fresh!
SEO errors on your web page
Perhaps you haven’t set your meta correctly or fix a URL, but SEO errors are something you need to change to recover lost visitors. It might not even be the content, but could be the shareability, mobile optimization, or site speed on your website.
Bad links can harm you
Links can be a great SEO strategy, but poor practices can lead to your downfall. If you have outbound links that no longer work, it’s time to find new ones and correct those. Of course, you don’t want your users to be redirected to a 404, so you need to update your links. Moreover, inbound links can equally damage your SEO if the website linking to yours allowed search engines to crawl and index your website. This is especially true when the website seems sketchy or toxic, to begin with.
SEO audit is a holistic analysis of your site. The scope of your assessment can go further to include other performance metrics like social media sharing, citations, linking structures, server metrics, downtime, speed, and optimization.
Important aspects when performing an SEO audit
When doing an SEO audit of your site, there are aspects you need to uncover and areas to mend to conduct a proper analysis. Here are some of them:
On-page SEO is where most activities and optimization happen on the content and website for search engines to crawl and index.
The content should be of high-quality, with little to no grammatical errors. What’s important is that the content should be fresh, lengthy, and relevant. Quality content is given more importance than just someone inserting keywords. Content can be of the following:
- Articles. Google prefers to have a lengthy article worth 800 words or more. It should be new, relevant, and original.
- Images. If possible, images should be original, lest you can credit the photographer on the byline. What’s more, it should be optimized in size for web use because it can delay page speed. Lastly, since search engines can’t understand images, for now, you need to provide an appropriate alt text for them to understand and crawl it.
- Videos. Likewise, videos should be compressed for web use. It should contain necessary keywords for search engines to crawl and index them as well. MPEG-4 is still viewed as the best file format for online video publishing.
Meta tags, titles, and descriptions
Meta titles and descriptions are the text you see on the search results page. While there’s a huge debate on whether it affects page rankings, it definitely helps search engines crawl and index your site faster because you provide necessary information about the content. Make sure you use the proper character count and are relevant to the content.
URL or permalink structure
It’s hard to remember and understand the page content when it’s like www.yoursite.com/94639/fghyr/2019. Better fix your URLs into something humans and bot can read like www.yoursite.com/benefits-of-meditation.
Search engines can understand the heading structure to uncover how important a piece of text on your page. For example, H1 tags are for titles and should be placed on the title area. Meanwhile, H2 is for subheadings found on the article when you’re trying to break-off a point. It’s then followed by H3, H4, H5, H6, and paragraph text.
Linking to internal pages
You can link related pages as long as you don’t use the keyword anchor text. What’s more, keep your links around 2 to 10 per article or 0.5 percent of you can. Make sure to link back to high-quality articles on your site!
Lessen your ads. It’s not good to place so many ads above the fold. Technically, one can’t say how many ads should be placed, but take a good look at your content to see it fit.
Off-page SEO is an activity done outside of your website that drives traffic back within. It can be used to define quality content, especially if there are a lot of sites linking back to yours.
Trusted domains linking back to yours. How many authority domains link back to you? Are they trustworthy? Do they follow the nofollow option? You can try guest posting, partnering, or advertising your page to a trusted domain if you want to build links to your website.
Social media campaigns. Having an online profile can drive traffic back to your site. Your social channels can help boost your linking to increase site visitors. What’s more, a highly engaged social profile can enhance trust among users to further do transactions with you.
Directory sites. Placing your business on directory listing can help boost site traffic. When you allow your customers to review, take photos, and share their experience on listings, it can improve SEO.
Sometimes you just have to do technical work and get behind the website works to influence SEO rankings. Here’s what you need to know about them.
1. Use of 404 landing-page friendly
2. Implementing redirects like 301, 302
3. Presence of sitemap
4. Tweaking robots.txt
5. Using content delivery networks (CDN)
A competitive analysis of your website on these aspects can help take a glimpse of whether your SEO strategy is working for you or against you. Once you see an audit of your site, you can make necessary changes to amp up your rankings in search engines.
SEO has long been a core part of digital marketing. Processes have changed as search engine algorithms have evolved, but optimising a website so search engines (and more importantly, users) can access and understand it is a strategy that still works.