What Is an SEO Audit?
The backbone to a great SEO strategy starts with a comprehensive SEO audit of your website. Your in-house SEO or agency should first take a look at your website and determine the most critical items in need of repair and provide a general assessment of your website, highlighting the good, the bad, and the ugly. We will discuss what these items look like specifically in just a bit, but first let’s start off with an analogy to better understand the value of creating an SEO audit.
Imagine you have your first appointment with a new physician. The doctor isn’t going to just take your temperature and send you off. She/He is going to gather as much information about your medical history as possible, run various tests from blood pressure to cholesterol, and likely examine your body for lumps and other red flags that are critical to your health. An SEO audit works similarly to a trip to the doctor’s office as it provides the foundation for improving your website’s health.
There are many items to consider when evaluating the health of a website. Things like indexability, URL structure, content, on-page SEO, technical SEO, backlinks, and much more should all be considered. By taking a look at many areas of a website, your SEO can begin prioritizing what needs to be taken care of first. Just like a doctor’s patients, every website is going to have its own set of weaknesses and strengths that need to be examined and prioritized.
What’s Included in an SEO Audit?
The items included in an SEO audit will vary site-to-site, but all of the following items should be analyzed to determine their condition. Let’s take a look at some of the common areas we typically evaluate on our client’s websites.
One of the first things an SEO will examine is your website’s URLs. They may be too long, aren’t keyword relevant, and for e-commerce websites specifically, don’t utilize a user-friendly hierarchy that’s helpful for both website visitors and Google crawlers.
Often times, businesses implement an SEO strategy because they can’t find their website in the search results. This is often due to indexability issues such as no-indexing inappropriate pages, not including a sitemap file and communicating with Google, or having duplicate/thin content that confuses Google.
This can include a number of things like keyword relevant header tags, meta and page title information, strategic links, valuable content, image optimization, and more. Many of these items are the foundation of a good SEO strategy and should be optimized on a regular basis depending on your website’s performance in the search results.
Does your website have Google Analytics, Tag Manager, and Search Console setup appropriately to ensure you are collecting accurate data about your website visitors? This is important for not only determining the success of your website currently, but also to understand how SEO improvements over time are impacting your site’s performance.
For businesses with a focus on local SEO especially, Google Business Listings are essential for users to find your business in Google Maps and local search.
User Interface and User Experience reviews are important for improving things like conversion rates, website speed, bounce rates, and other important metrics Google uses to rank your website in the search results. Specific design items that can affect these metrics are mobile-friendly website designs, Call-to-Action buttons, page load times, and more.
These can be found by running a crawl of your website. Broken links usually arise when pages are created and then later deleted without implementing a 301 redirect, including outdated external links on your website that no longer exist, and for large e-commerce websites when products are no longer in stock or removed completely.
Does your website utilize an SSL (Secure Socket Layer)? Google has announced to the public that they do in fact consider https vs http to be an important part of their ranking algorithm. Your web host can help you get an SSL installed on your site.
Having a professional conduct an SEO audit for your website is a great first step to improving your appearance on the web. You can request a Free SEO Audit from webFEAT Complete and one of our SEO professionals will get back to you quickly!