Once it comes to attracting search traffic, it is not enough just to create a website and start selling. Website owners need to audit it and find new SEO approaches systematically. Here, thousands of web resources compete with each other in the same niche. The first step towards ranking in the top 10 and earning converting organic traffic is an SEO audit. An SEO audit is an evaluation of the website quality of a site according to the requirements of search engines.
This article will cover eight steps in SEO audit that every SEO specialist should complete understanding how to improve page ranking and attract more organic traffic.
One of the essential components of website performance is its successful interaction with search bots (crawlers). Crawling is the process of search robots detecting and collecting new and updated pages to add them to the index of search engines. Therefore, crawling as part of an SEO audit is essential to understand. This helps to figure out when a website has problems with search engine visibility and also how effective the chosen website architecture is. There’s no way to attract search traffic if the crawling fails.
Depending on how the search engine evaluates your page, it determines your site’s positions in the search results for a particular query. If the quality of the page is low, the search engine may remove it so it will not participate in the results. The audit identifies pages that require revision and based on it, you can compile a list of necessary edits for the site.
A technical SEO audit involves more than crawling a site and fixing errors. Audits are an integral part of an SEO strategy, and with the right tools, you can bake quality into your promotion saving yourself from future problems. Tools like SE Ranking, go beyond the standard site health-check. It hosts an assortment of features such as the ability to check the not-so-obvious elements of your site – website loading speed, <meta> tag analysis, and image scanning for example. Take a look at its Issue Report in the Crawling section:
Here’s a shortlist of basic crawling problems and how to fix them:
After you’ve made the changes, you can compare crawling results in the SE Ranking tool from a start to end date to see whether the updated pages were added to the index or not and whether the problems were fixed.
It can take time for search engines to have your site crawled, weeks perhaps, even if this time frame doesn’t depend on the length of the website.
You may help Google crawl your site by submitting a sitemap or individual pages via Google Search Console.
The indexing problem is one of the main errors that almost every website owner struggles with; this is especially the case for huge websites. Checking for indexation means monitoring whether the website information was added to the search engine database. Users will not be able to find pages that are not in the index, therefore, there will be no search traffic.
Search engines are interested in creating a base of well-structured sites with credible and updated information. Consequently, they regularly scan all sites in search of new content, and even if your page was indexed, it is not a permanent decision.
This process consists of cataloging the contents of web pages to improve their SEO on Google.
First, you need to check if you’re indexed in Google. The simplest way to do that is to type in Google search (without the quotation marks) “site:yourwebsite.com”. You will see several indexed pages, but that’s quite rough data.
If you want to check whether a specific page is indexed by Google, type “site:yourwebsite.com/web-page-slug”.
Also, you can check the indexation of pages in the Google Search Console. Go to Index > Coverage and see how many pages are marked as “Valid” – that’s your number of indexed pages.
To check the indexation of a particular page, use the URL Inspection tool from Google Search Console. You will see the “URL is on Google” text if it’s indexed.
If the page does not show and you want it to, click on “Request indexing” in the same URL Inspection tool.
A fast-loading website is a must to attract organic traffic in 2021. The site and page speed are crucial for both visitors and search engines:
Also, you should remember that page loading speed is not the same as website loading speed. Some of the pages may take really long to load, while other pages load fast, and thus, the overall site loading speed will be OK. But in fact, in this case, you have serious problems with slow-loading pages that need to be fixed ASAP.
There are several tools that can check page loading speed and get recommendations from Google.
As a rule, the following factors slow pages down:
An HTTP status code is a server reaction to a browser’s request. When you navigate a website, your browser sends requests to the site’s server; the server then reacts to the browser’s request with a three-digit code: the HTTP status code.
There are five categories of HTTP status codes:
Any website owner and SEO expert need to understand the status codes that will impact their site’s traffic in the Google search engine.
For example, 5xx errors refer to server issues. A 4xx error means that there is some client-side problem. Codes starting with 3 refer to the redirection of both server and search engines to another URL.
Speaking of redirects, it is very common to redirect from one URL to another, but use this wisely. There are multiple options to execute it, but the preferable way is to set a 301 redirect which means permanent movement of the content from one page to another.
Remember that the search engines (Google, for example) will take some time to discover the 301, accept it, and credit the new page with the rankings of the previous page. Moving content becomes more arduous when a full site changes its domain or when specific content moves between domains.
So yes, there are many status codes that need your attention and revision. Here are some options to check the status code:
One of the free tools you may use is Google Search Console to help you with errors and audit traffic resolutions to SEO.
Content is still the king and the source of organic traffic for your site. Website copy and blog articles are of great importance for ranking. Unique texts with relevant keywords and a well-thought-out structure can easily bring your website page to the top of the search results.
However, it is worth remembering that Google pays more and more attention to high-quality content that fully responds to the user's request. Low-quality, overly complex, or non-unique texts spammed with keywords will no longer rank high. Therefore, it is important to check the quality of your content. You can use Copyscape to check it for uniqueness, and SEO Writing Assistant by SEMRush or On-Page SEO Checker by SE Ranking to check whether the text is well-optimized.
What you must look at specifically is:
Organic traffic is an almost free source of people who are interested in your products and services. By analyzing traffic, you can understand which marketing channels users come to you, which pages of your site generate more interest among the audience, which lead to conversions, which pages serve as a “bridge” to other site pages, and which cause bounces. It also helps you better understand your audience, their interests, and demographics. You can see all this in different sections of Google Analytics – it's a free tool that is a must-have for any site owner or marketer.
To efficiently analyze organic traffic follow these steps:
Keywords are search queries that bring traffic to your site from the SERP. Thus, every page on your website containing textual content should be optimized for particular keywords, keeping user intent in mind. While performing a website audit, your task is to check whether your pages are well-optimized for keywords. They should be present in all content throughout your page in the:
You can check whether your page is optimized for a specific keyword with any SEO tool of your choice, like the content analysis service by Seoreviewtools. You just paste the text there and enter your target keyword to see how well the text is optimized.
Keyword optimization is an ongoing process where you always search for new profitable keywords to implement your site traffic by growing your keyword databases. While performing such keyword research in any SEO service (like the one by Keyword-hero.com), pay attention to the following metrics of each keyword:
Backlinks are links from other sites that point to your website. They are among the top ranking factors for search engines like Google. If you have many backlinks from reliable websites, your ranking will be higher. Still, the process of gaining backlinks should be gradual, and there should be no “toxic” backlinks that may spoil your backlink profile. So, it’s crucial to check your backlinks from time to time – one of the best services for that is Majestic.com.
Here’s a short guide on how to conduct a backlink analysis:
The first step to fix broken links is to find them. To find broken internal links on your website, Google Webmaster Tools will identify all internal links.
To check external links, you may use Monsido, which will give you a weekly report of all your external links avoiding the struggle of checking them manually one by one.
Broken links are dangerous to your site as they tell visitors that your site is not trustworthy. Therefore they shout to Google that your site is outdated; and, your ranking will fall.
To fix a broken external link, remove it and replace it with one that works.
To fix a broken internal link, you have a few options, depending on what caused the fault:
So, an SEO audit of a site is an assessment of the site's compliance with the requirements of search engines. With the successful implementation of all recommendations and basic requirements, sites receive more search traffic and gain visibility in the search engine for the target keywords.
Search engines consider that the more optimization on the site, the higher positions in the search results it gets. In particular, SEO specialists should:
Achieving results requires the help of in-depth analysis and planning - this is the purpose and task of an SEO audit.