The significance of a SEO Audit cannot be underestimated. A SEO Audit of any website paves ways for discovering methods to improve your SEO campaign. By performing a SEO audit, you are able to note down the weak points in your campaign which can be improved upon and ultimately helps in increasing your website’s rankings on major search engines.
It is generally advisable to perform an audit of a website in two situations. Either you are beginning a new SEO campaign, or you have noticed a drop in your traffic. In these situations, it is always better to perform an audit in the nick of time and discover the root cause of the problem. Here is a comprehensive list of the action items which are required to be taken and fixed in order to rank higher on search engines.
You should ask yourself the following questions regarding your website: How fast does your website load? Is your website mobile friendly? Are there any redirect issues?
- Website loading speed
As per Google, website loading speed is a highly critical factor as one of the ranking factors for search engines. The faster your website speed, the lesser chances are that your visitors will run out of patience and exit your website. This also increases the chance that your bounce rates will decrease and visitors will spend more time on your website. Emptying your browser cache and minimizing your image sizes is one of the ways you can take care of this factor.
- Mobile Friendliness
More than 60% of the search engine searches happen on mobiles. Google provides a tool called ‘Page Insights’ which can tell you whether your website is viewable properly on your mobile or not. This is also a critical factor in determining your organic rankings. If your website is not presently mobile friendly, hire a developer and get it modified so that you don’t lose those countless future customers and prospects which are on mobile devices.
When there’s no content on a page and a viewer lands on it, it is called a 404 error. 404 errors are the worst as they can really hurt your search engine rankings. It is obviously advisable to fix these errors and set up a 301 redirect which goes to the new page. 302s are actually temporary redirects and they do not pass any authority. Therefore in case of 302s you need to change them into 301 in order to pass link authority. Issues may arise in case you forget to redirect your non-preferred domain to the preferred domain.
A strong and methodical site structure is vital for keeping the users as well as the search engines happy and satisfied. Cluttered architecture in any website makes it difficult for even the search engines to index them regularly and promptly. Ask yourself the following questions: Is the present Architecture of the website complicated?
Can the structure of this website be improved to ensure smooth navigation and an improved user experience? All of your quality and relevant content should not be away more than three clicks from the home page. Set up all your web pages that are easy to understand from a user as well as a search engine’s perspective.
Duplicate Content Issues
Duplicate content can make an adverse impact on your website. You could eventually land yourself being penalized by Google as a Panda penalty. This is the reason that it is never advisable to copy any kind of written content available already on various websites. Even Meta descriptions need to be unique on each and every page.
You should constantly make all your efforts to have unique descriptions and all the Meta data originally written by you, without copying it from elsewhere over the Internet. This is extremely important for preventing any Google Penalties. Though it might be quite time-consuming, it is worth all of those efforts.
Also, Canonical tags should be set up for pointing Google to one of the preferred duplicate pages (if any exist) and to also inform Google about the preferred domain (i.e www or non-www version) of the website.
Understanding the backlinks of any website is vital for SEO Professionals and Internet Marketers. In fact, one of the most significant factors which affects your website’s position on Search Engine Result Pages is primarily the website’s backlink profile. Due to this reason, you need to understand that the more trusted domains you possess in your backlink profile, the higher position the website obtains on major search engines and the Domain Authority also increases.
Quality backlinks and domain diversity are more valuable to help you in making a higher impact in Google’s Algorithm compared to any other known factors. Hence it becomes quite essential to analyse your backlinks and accordingly craft a proper link building strategy for your website. It is quite necessary that you should not have backlinks from penalized or low-quality content websites which can prove to be quite harmful for the ranking of your website in the long run.
Competitor Analysis and Keyword Analysis
It is extremely important to perform an overall competitor analysis to take a look at the keywords which your competitor is using to beat you in the search engines race. Keyword Research is the backbone of any SEO efforts or campaigns. It is always a good practise to review in detail the keywords you have been using for any particular SEO campaign. Long Tail keywords have to be used throughout your campaigns to add variation in your final list so that they rank well.
If you want to beat your competition, it is highly recommended that you should find keywords that are performing well above average. Using Google Keyword Planner as a beginning tool is a good suggestion.
Your title should have the main keyword used within it. Optimize all your images with the main keyword in it for getting ranked in the Google Image search. Also, when you create content, it should be relevant and should provide some value to readers. Besides this, the length of the article should be at least 500 words long. It is supposed to have a LSI in the beginning of every article and it should be grammatically free of any errors.
Indexability of Your Website
Without your web pages being indexed, the website will not be even visible by search engines. It is therefore vital that your web pages should be indexable. Make sure that you check first and foremost robots.txt file. Audit this file to make sure that you haven’t blocked any part of the website which might be preventing the spiders from crawling the website and indexing it. The best thing is to look for the command “Disallow: /” which basically prohibits the spiders to crawl your site. Look for it and make sure you don’t have it on there.
Also, you should have a sitemap as it helps in indexing your website faster. A sitemap can be easily created by using various free sitemap generator tools which eventually have to be uploaded to your site and submitted to Google Search Console/Google Webmasters.