The 13-Step SEO Audit: How to Find Your SEO Mistakes & Opportunities
The 13-Step SEO Audit: How to Find Your SEO Mistakes & Opportunities
Most SEO audit techniques out there get a bad rep for being too technical and for taking a lengthy period of time to be completed. They are however a must for any business in this particular field which raises the age old question, where and how to begin? This is why this article should come in handy in making the process of carrying out an SEO audit, and the 13 steps outlined here should prove helpful for any business from those with a lot of mileage in the SEO game to those just starting out and every other in between.
The first step in this 13 step journey is developing site-specific internal and external links for your website. These are both crucial for your site especially in forming authoritative hierarchies within your site. It is also assumed as good practice to make sure only one version of your site is browse able and that there are no redirection issues when visitors try to access your site.
The next step is identifying if there is a way you could improve the way information is structured on your site and making everything as user friendly as possible for maximum user experience. This is known as improving of the information architecture in SEO lingo. This includes such things as increasing the number of posts-per-page for your blog so that older blog posts don’t become inaccessible, checking that you don’t have issues with overlapping links. Such structural improvements should always be based on the set goals you have for your project.
The next step is checking that the content on your site pages have enough meat on their bones. This is particularly important as you will want to score as highly as possible in the search engine results page, with those sites with thin content falling foul of the Google algorithm update called Panda that was created to dig out such sites. This therefore means you have to ensure your site pages have enough information for the particular topics they carry for the users. Enough means not too scanty and not going overboard.
Another crucial step when carrying out an SEO audit is making sure that there is no duplicate content on your site pages as this are usually likely to attract fines. The good news is that, finding content that has been duplicated should be quite easy as it involves looking at the same areas you looked at when looking for thin content. Fines are likely to ensue if Google detects that you are deliberately duplicating content so this step should be taken seriously.
After taking care of thin and duplicate content, the next logical step is checking whether there are keywords that need to be optimized. This includes going through your sit pages and ensuring keywords that are suited to your blog page don’t find their way to your homepage and vice versa. Optimizing of keywords is very important since they will dictate if you will show up on in an organic search or not. Make use of the tools and SEO products available to help you do research on suitable keywords for you as you do your optimization.
Having optimized keywords and sticking to the theme, the next step should be to make sure that your meta tags are optimized. This include a meta title and a meta description and they carry a lot of weight when Google is looking to rank pages in order, that is how crucial they are. When optimizing your meta tags, as a rule of thumb, make sure to keep your titles below 60 characters as anything passed that will be automatically be truncated by Google and also remember to keep your description length between 155 to 160 characters as this is the best practice.
To make sure that Google regularly crawls your site pages, make sure you regularly update your pages as this will keep them fresh and relatable when it comes to the search engine. This is particularly important when dealing with the top page and the opportunity page of your site as these two are the ones which will mostly dictate if you will get increased traffic or not. Updating of your pages is crucial especially if they are not in the top 10 as this will give them the best chance of cracking the top echelons. Updating can be done by either adding new information or research or by adding to your page relevant, ancillary keywords that have shown to have clout in driving traffic. Fixing broken links and compressing images will also do the trick.
The next step is to ensure that you regularly run page speed analytics on your pages. As no one likes to stick around on a page that is taking forever to load, the faster your loading speeds the higher you are likely to be ranked by Google when it comes to their organic rankings. Tools like PageSpeed Insights will come in handy as they will both check your page speeds and offer suggestions on how to boost them. As a tip, image compression will boost your page speed, and it will do so quickly and effectively.
Another important step not to be missed when doing an SEO audit is checking for site errors. This include popular errors like the 404 “page not found” error which will greatly reduce user experience for visitors on your pages. The good news is that there are site audit tools that will identify such site errors and help you fix them appropriately.
Of course no SEO audit should be completed without ensuring that your site is no longer running on HTTP but it is on the modern and improved HTTPS which is not only more secure but faster and contributes to Google’s ranking algorithm. Making the switch is therefore a step that shouldn’t be missed if you are to maximize on opportunities out there.
Another important step to note when carrying out an SEO audit is not forgetting to check whether or not your rankings are heading in the right direction. You are looking to see whether your rankings are rising or declining here. If it is the latter, then you will need to find out the reasons why and fix them.
Still on this note, make sure to analyze your organic search engine traffic, so that you can identify ways to increase traffic to your website. This should tell you whether or not traffic is increasing or decreasing and should help you figure out how to get better traffic with the information collected from the analysis.
Another step that shouldn’t be forgotten is checking whether or not you rank for your brand name. this simply means that your site should be the first organic result when you do a Google search unless of course it is brand new or has a very generic name. if you rank lower for your brand name then you will need to improve that ranking and see if you can move higher up.
The above are just some of the steps that you should ensure you at least touch on when conducting an SEO audit that we recommend you follow for a successful campaign. For more on this and much more runrex.com is the place to visit.