Whether small businesses or large enterprises that make their offerings available online with website development need to rank their website at the top of the search engine, improving brand awareness, offering visibility, and enjoying other benefits is only possible with SEO optimization.
The importance of SEO for a website is well-recognized by businesses for their website. However, regular audits are vital for knowing the website’s current status and making SEO improvements. It mandates the need for top-grade SEO companies that can help businesses with the proper SEO audit using the right SEO tools.
In this blog, we will delve deeper into an SEO audit overview and a step-by-step process for a successful audit that helps proactively find and fix SEO issues. Let’s dive in!
- What is an SEO audit?
- 10-step process to conduct SEO audit rightly
What is an SEO audit?
SEO audit is a process to check the health of business websites to see whether it’s optimized for search engines. SEO audit checks keyword usage, organic search ranking, industry trends, latent semantic indexing, problematic code, and competition. It unveils all the issues impacting a website’s ranking and the opportunities hidden in plain sight. Also, it gives insights into the latest SEO efforts and what actions need to be initiated to take the website to the top position.
The cost of an SEO audit depends on the SEO tools used to audit specific business websites. Different SEO audit tools, such as Ahrefs webmaster, Google search console, and Google analytics tools, are leveraged as premium tools, so businesses should ask for quotes to compare and choose the right agency.
10-step process to conduct SEO audit rightly
Just as the importance of SEO cannot be ignored for website ranking, the importance of SEO audit cannot be overlooked for SEO optimization. An SEO audit is performed step-by-step, and the results are spectacular. Here is the step to follow for an SEO audit:
Run a crawl
SEO audit begins with site crawling, wherein crawlers scan the website using SEO audit tools to identify all the SEO-related issues that the website has. The crawlers scan the website monthly to monitor page views, conversion rate, bounce rate, and more and highlight issues like- page titles, broken links, content duplication, etc. A thorough check showcases more than 100 issues that allow businesses to make their website stay effective and competitive.
Find out drops in organic traffic
Since 2015, Google algorithms have continuously changed to prevent link spamming or improve content quality that makes the target users happy. SEO tools like- Ahref’s will tell businesses whether the latest update impacts traffic. Google search console is also used to double check the organic traffic performance followed by significant drops. When zero traffic is identified at any time, manual action from the human reviewer is required to find out what’s gone so wrong that the website is not visible in search results.
Diagnose indexing issues
Google ranks only those pages that are in Google’s database after indexing. Businesses choose to index a few pages they want to rank, such as product pages, home pages, and others, and leave others like- admin page, feed page, and others. Website pages are not indexed; businesses should use the Google search console tool to check the list of issues thoroughly. Later, Google is requested to index the page for ranking purposes.
Identify duplication issues
Sometimes, the websites have multiple versions of URLs that will hurt website crawl, index, and rank because Google considers them duplicate website content. Businesses should specify the preferred version of the website so that users are redirected to the same version of the URL irrespective of the URL version entered. 301 redirects will help to stop website access through different versions.
In the mobile-first world, optimizing the websites for mobile is all-important to ensure businesses give credence to the target users. 2015 Google update mandates mobile-friendliness is vital to improve SERP. Businesses can check the website’s mobile usability using the Google search console tool that provides detailed issues about affected pages. The instructions from the help center enable businesses to fix the issues.
Analyze page speed
A high-performance website delivers the best user experience and converts them well. Businesses can find out the website’s loading speed on mobile and desktop using Google’s PageSpeed insights tool. The list of all the items’ loading times, the issues impacting page speed, and suggestions to fix those issues are provided to improve ranking.
Assess sitemap architecture
Businesses always submit the sitemap architecture, an organized, logical structure of the website submitted, to the webmaster so that search engine crawlers can easily crawl and understand the website. The better architecture indicates the best user experience delivery, which, in turn, impacts ranking. During architecture submission, SEO companies ensure the URL is strong; the navigation menu is listed at the top, internal linking is done optimally, and others.
Core web vitals analysis
Core web vitals are crucial to measuring user experience, which’s defined by loading speed (the time that the most significant item of the website takes to load), user interactions (the time gap between the users’ first interaction and response from the browser), and visual stability (Layout shifting time). These three metrics define the core web vitals that are an essential part of SEO audit. Google search console helps businesses view detailed insights into pages that require little improvements or have severe issues.
An internal link is vital for SEO because it helps crawlers visit the important pages and allows users to navigate the website seamlessly. SEO audit tools display internal link issues and suggestions to fix them, followed by tips on how well a page is interlinked. When businesses visit every category, they get to know pages with good interlinking and without enough internal linking.
Find out keywords that are not ranking
Keyword research and analysis reveal which keywords to target, but ranking those keywords is important to make the most out of the opportunity. SEO audit tools like- keyword gap help you compare the ranking keyword list with the four closest competitors to identify which keywords businesses missed to target and which keywords competitors have ranked well. It unearths the opportunities for businesses to know high-ranking keywords that they should try to target and rank high.
The importance of SEO is visible from the outstanding results it brings to the table. SEO optimization starts with an SEO audit that helps businesses know what needs to be improved to rank the website high on the first page of the search engine. However, there’s no one-size-fits-all solution for SEO audits. It requires considering an SEO audit checklist wherein multiple things are identified, checked, and improved to increase the SEO score of the website. Following these ten steps in an SEO audit enables businesses to get the realistic picture and results they seek. Try your hands now!