We make a lot of efforts and invest a lot of money and time in order to bring out the best version of a website. But can anyone tell why we do so? You must be thinking what a silly question is this, Right. Of course, we do everything to grab the traffic and ultimately the good conversions. But what if you are still not getting the results as expected. There are chances that your website is not getting sufficient insights because it has been get less noticed by the audience.
Another reason for this happening could be that you might think that the creation of well- designed and a sophisticated website is all enough in order to get quality traffic. But this is not true and if you think like this then you are off base. There always exist one thing that is more than enough to change the whole success ratio and do you want to know what is that factor? In the context of a website, it is SEO.
You must have noticed many a times that your competitors’ websites are appearing above your website. It could be happening due to SEO. In the increasing competition scenario, SEO has now become the priority of every website. As a result, most of the website owners are taking SEO into consideration to improve their ranking. And if SEO is there then the success of your website can’t be maintained for long without SEO auditing.
What is SEO Auditing and why is it Necessary?
The process of evaluating the friendliness of your website with the search engines is known as SEO Auditing. There are no. of Factors of SEO that work together in order to make SEO Success as well as to rank your website higher. When you make sure that all these SEO factors are up to date as well as compatible with search engines then this process is called SEO Auditing. With SEO Auditing checklist you can make it even easy to find out what factors are weakening the effectiveness of your SEO. And once you know that you can timely fix those issues SEO.
The next thing which comes in mind is that why SEO auditing is Necessary. The reason is that everything in the Worlds needs a regular checkup in order to work efficiently. People go for regular checkups for making sure that everything is working properly inside their body, isn’t it? The same thing is applicable in the case of SEO too. In this ever evolving World you need to take care of the health of SEO just like you care for your health.
Because Google comes up with new updates time to time and whenever there is any new update then the older one becomes less effective and your website has to suffer from it. And this may cause a declined ranking of your website. So, for keep your website’s ranking secure you must make the SEO auditing a part of your SEO strategies.
Without SEO auditing you will not be able to find out the reason for the declined ranking. But more important thing you need to ensure is that it is to be done in the right way. We are revealing below the basic SEO audit checklist so that you can get a better idea about what you have to consider. You can refer to this SEO audit checklist in order to refine your strategies.
SEO Audit Checklist:
1. On-Page SEO Audit checklist:
Talking about SEO, there are a lot of off- page and on-page SEO practices that are to be followed in order to get the best SEO results. But many times the important factors are left behind that ultimately comes up in the form of unsatisfactory results. To make sure everything is perfect, check out the factors of On-Page SEO whose ignorance you can’t afford.
A. Title Tag: Title tags are very important in the success of SEO. So at the time of SEO auditing, you must take title tags also into consideration. And you know what this can be the best than platform for keyword placement. And also this is the prime element in the Search Engine Result Pages that grabs the immediate attention of the users. So make sure to put the focus keyword in the title tag. Apart from this, Title length also matters in SEO results. So, It must between 40 -70 characters in order to optimize it.
B. Keyword in the H1 And H2 Tags: A page is incomplete without a heading. Isn’t it?
Every time the search engine crawls a page of the website then headings of that page are also taken into consideration. And for making the headline compatible to SEO it is always considered a good practice to add the focused keyword in the H1 tag.
Do you know what will it do? It will help the search engine to clearly understand the context of the page. Where adding different keywords in H1 tag will make the Search Engine confused. Moreover, you should try to put the keywords in the H2 tag as well in order to build the relevancy of the topic and for making it more clear in front of the search engine.
C. Put Keyword in Meta Description:
Although Meta Descriptions don’t have a direct impact on SEO but it affects indirectly. If your Meta description is optimized then it helps to attain more CTR. And the good news about it is that the websites with higher CTR are always get noticed by the search engines. So it is a good practice to add keyword in the Meta Description as well in order to give a better idea of the context to the users also.
Try to not to go for a long Meta description. As if you write long Meta Descriptions they will not appear completely and sometimes may be your main context can be left. You should instead keep the length of Meta Description limited to 160 characters. It’s good to practice to write a meta-description that is conspicuous about what the content is all about.
D. Make Use of Keyword in URL:
Although this is a small SEO ranking factor but this factor also has an impact on the ranking of website. According to the statistics around 65% of the top-ranking websites have keywords in their URL. And from a reader’s perspective, the keywords in the URL tell them about the niche area of your business. So that the user will easily figure out- what he will get on that particular website.
As we all know SEO is not only about the results but it is about getting the good results. With relevant keywords in the URL you can earn more clicks. Moreover, keywords placed in URL also help the search engine to know about what a page is all about. You can’t deny the fact that URL is one of the foremost factors that is taken into consideration while deciding about which website should be clicked or not. And CTR is a vital component that helps to uplift the ranking.
E. Content Length:
In an SEO audit, the length of the content also helps to increase the ranking but there are people who focus on writing content of 300-600 words max and they consider that it is ideal. There is nothing like that short length content does not rank in the search engine. But the thing is that long contents rank better than the short one. And obviously everyone works to get the best from the possible strategies of SEO in order to improve the effectiveness of the website.
Do you know what is the Concept behind writing the lengthy contents? It is to provide useful & rich information to the reader. If your think that it is just about expanding the content by keep on adding more & more words then it’s totally wrong. In fact, it is all about making the content good by adding rich information, statistics, facts, proper explanations, and figures etc.
And when you will prepare a blog that is well-written with all of the above qualities it will definitely end up with a perfect length. Although, Length is not the primary focus but how good content is, matters more. And by including all such factors in your content will ultimately make it something that is perfect from the SEO point of view in order to attain a higher ranking.
F. Check For Broken Links:
SEO shapes the website into the best version of it and it eliminates the hampering elements. So, it is necessary that the website should be perfect in each & every manner to get a good ranking. So it is important that when you do SEO auditing you also check the existence of the broken links. Because when the crawling of the website is done then every page is checked properly & deeply. And if there are broken links they generally lead to 404 errors on the page and that is obviously not valuable to the users.
Any page that contains the broken links restricts the search engine to crawl the website any further. As a result, the website would not be able to get indexed. And without indexing, it is impossible to make the website rank. Because if the existence itself is questionable, then how does it matter to enhance the website visibility.
G. Domain Age of the page:
Yes you hard it right because domain age is also one of the factors among hundreds of weighing factors that need to be included in the SEO Audit Checklist. Domain age is calculated from the day when the domain is got indexed by Google. And it has always been observed that the aged domain rank better in comparison to the new domains.
And this is obvious because if the domain is aged it has more chances to have a good number of backlinks but the condition is the content should be good enough. And domain age is not only important to rank higher but with the time domain also becomes more authoritative and trustworthy due to its existence. Simply put the things: it takes time to win the trust of the audience.
H. No Index Tags:
No index tags are also important in SEO because at the time of determining the website ranking all the pages of a website are taken into consideration. Hence it is important to use Noindex cautiously, otherwise it can harm your SEO efforts. If any page on the website contains the “NoIndex” tag then it will not get indexed by the search engine. As a result, it will have a bad impact on the website ranking. So, you need to take care of the no index tags and remove them timely.
I. Create Unique Content
The things that affect the quality of your website content is a threat to your website ranking. SEO is effective only when all the factors of SEO are perfectly fine and you know what content is one the most important factor that you need to optimize. So when you do SEO auditing you should check every aspect that can hamper the existence of content.
By SEO auditing it will become easier to know about the problematic areas and if you are aware of these areas then it is easy to work on them. The search engine is so much effective that it can easily detect any kind of copied content. And having copied content will surely make your website ranking down and make the SEO weak. With SEO auditing you stay informed about the originality and freshness of the content.
J. Add some Value to your Content
This is also important to have a valuable content because a content that has no value for the user is not the demand for SEO. So, basically everything here starts with the audience and ends on the audience only. The value of the content on your website is a strong factor that helps in determining the ranking.
The ultimate purpose of the content is to serve the users with proper information and when this purpose is justified then only it will be rewarded by Google. These kinds of content earn more clicks and shares. With the SEO auditing checklist you can figure out what are the loopholes in your SEO techniques. So that you can remove them and make yourself a strong contender to rank higher.
K. Consider Image Optimization
Images are the best way that can excite anyone. And the proper use of images is sufficient to bring life to any kind of content. Image optimization is a great move when it comes to SEO. Any blog or website that is enriched with quality and relevant images is able to easily impress the users. But you should not opt for the common images that are used by a lot of people.
Avoid using Images with copyright and use quality images also make sure that the images go well with the content and convey the message properly. With SEO auditing you can find out the area to optimize well.
L. Use Alt Tags For Images
Alt tags also play a crucial role in SEO. As Google can’t read Images, then how will Google come to know that the website have well- crafted content with relevant images? The answer is that Alt tag will tell.
As we already discussed Google can’t read images, so it becomes necessary to have alt tags. So that Google can understand that there are images in the content. And if there is a case that image does not appear then the text which is added in the alt tag will appear as the replacement of the image.
M. Put Keyword In The Alt Tag
With the time Google has become smarter now because it understands the content and context. So it is always advisable to add the keyword in the alt tag. And if you add relevant keyword in the alt tag it helps to optimize it well.
The optimized alt tag helps you to boost the ranking of your web pages as it adds value to it. In fact, without using alt tag there is no benefit of using images on a page. So, it is better that you use optimized alt tags in order to increase the ranking of your website.
N. Make maximum Social Share
Social Sharing although does not have a direct impact on SEO but it has an indirect impact on SEO. Because if the content is shared more than it will be more visible. And the immense sharing of the content will ultimately get more engagement, and clicks.
And as every marketer knows that more back links are necessary for a more improved ranking. The content with more social shares get credibility as well. A website that is more credible will get noticed by the search engines.
O. Optimized URL Structure
URL Structure is one of those factors that is usually get overlooked but in reality it should not be. It is the technical aspect that must be optimized for search engines. It should not always the case that you need to open a page to find out what it is all about. But in reality URL of the page can also tell what it is all about in case it is well- optimized.
In SEO auditing you must ensure that the URL of the website should be simple and easy-to-understand. This will help the audience to understand the context of the page without any need to open it completely. Most importantly make sure to have static URL rather than a dynamic one, because these are easy to understand as well as SEO compatible.
P. Optimize the Length Of URL
URL length is also considered in SEO auditing that’s why it is included in the SEO audit checklist. Shorter URLs are good from SEO viewpoint. It need to be 3-5 words long or in other words try to keep it as short as possible.
Long URLs are difficult to remember. If a URL is short & easy to remember then it is more likely to be visited more by the targeted audience. As a result, it will earn more clicks and an increased sense of reliability too. And the optimized URL Structure makes the website good to rank in the search engines.
Q. Users Experience
SEO auditing gives you the ideas about the kind of response a website is getting time to time because of SEO. User experience is one of the factors that is inspected by the SEO Auditing. If the website is left more often then there are chances that it might be due to bad users’ experience.
A Bad experience website always makes the users run away and to opt for some better option. It can be because of anything like complex navigation, design, colors, layout, images or something else. So you should always try to present powerful and creative structure of the website elements in order to attract more traffic. And you know what the good user experience will be rewarded by Google with the higher ranking.
R. Check for Too Many Outbound Links
As we know excess of everything is harmful. Just imagine a content that have few lines and then a link, again few lines then a link, will it look good? Obviously No, Right.
It is a good thing that you provide useful resources for detailed information, but if you add too many links then it will not only distract the users but it will end up reducing the value of the content. This will surely hamper the effectiveness of SEO.
S. Proper Use of Robot.Txt
Robot.txt tells the search engine that which web page should be crawled and which should be not? It makes it very important from the SEO point of view. Because when the search engine crawls the website, by default it crawls every page. But your website might have some pages which are not as good for SEO purposes.
It becomes important to prevent such pages from being indexed by Google. These pages can be some of the duplicate pages, or low-quality pages, or the pages taking a lot of time to load, spam content or the hacked pages etc. You need to take care of such kinds of pages, otherwise you SEO results will be hampered.
T. Check for Website’ Mobile Friendliness
Mobile friendliness is an important factor in SEO auditing like anything. And how much a website is compatible with mobile phones is another factor that affects the website ranking. And not being mobile friendly doesn’t only hamper the ranking on mobile phones but on the desktop as well.
In today’s scenario the numbers of mobile users are much more in comparison of desktop users. And in such times if a website is unable to serve the mobile users then it’s obvious that the ranking will go down. And the most important is that the website will not be able to serve the large segment of people who could have become your website’ quality traffic.
U. Have a look on the Loading Speed Of The Website
One of the most essentials of SEO that you need to take care of, so SEO auditing checklist also includes the loading speed of the website. Any kind of bad users’ experience will take your website away from being rewarded by Google with the higher ranking.
And this is also obvious, what is the meaning of rewarding a website that is unable to serve the users well? So, you need to take care of image sizes as well as the scripts files that can lead to slow loading speed of the website. When doing SEO audit, you should look after every factor in order to improve the loading speed and get effective SEO results.
The security factor of your website is also an essential component in SEO. While SEO auditing you must check is the website secure or not. A website that has HTTPs in the initials of the web address is secured. And these secured websites tend to rank higher on Google in comparison of the non-secured website.
Secured websites are trustworthy and reliable too in Google View so these are liable to get more traffic. If a website is secured it not only gains the traffic but more conversion too. And ultimately there will be a boost in the website ranking.
Off-Page SEO Audit Checklist:
A. The Quality of BackLinks
The most important factor of Off-Page SEO is link building to assists in improving the ranking. But getting backlinks once and then forget about it, this is not the approach but it will take you nowhere. Because link building is not only about the quantity in fact what matters the most is the quality of links.
The quality of links matter because the link quality is always monitored by Google. The websites that is enriched with qualitative backlinks from the websites having high Domain Authority awarded with higher ranking by Google.
Because the high DA websites are the trusted websites and links from such websites pass on the information to the search engine that these websites linked to the trusted website is valuable. It ultimately leads to improved authority and credibility of the websites and get to rank higher.
B. Dofollow And No Follow Links
If you want to take the best out of your SEO Efforts then the Nofollow links are not something that will work for you. So when you do SEO auditing, you need to take care of what kind of backlinks your content is getting. Because this is what that makes a difference in the SEO results. You need to strive for Do follow links more as only these links allow Google to follow and reach to your website.
The Do Follow links really hold a true worth in SEO whereas no-follow links do not hold much SEO value. In case of no-follow links the search engine will crawl the links but will not be able to follow where they are redirecting. So, an SEO audit helps to ensure the presence of more do-follow links in order to increase SEO effectiveness.
C. The Social Media Reputation Of The Website:
When your website get recommendation from the reputed website then it always serves a meaningful purpose. So, if you are getting backlinks from a website you should make sure that are from the reputed site. The website’s Social presence also plays an important role in the concern of backlinks. How many people are engaged on the website and their responses tell what kind of reputation a website holds?
How many likes, shares, and comments a websites’ page has will clearly show you the real picture of the website’s popularity and engagement of people with that. Therefore, links from such social media website will prove valuable in enhancing the SEO strategy and effects. That is why it becomes a vital component of the SEO audit checklist.
D. Trustworthiness Of The Website:
Undoubtedly the links have the power to change the game for the off-page SEO results. But that doesn’t mean that you just get it from any website. Quality obviously exists in the parameters. The quality and security of the website that is giving the backlink to your website is an essential factor for rank improvement.
So, it becomes necessary to check the sources of the backlinks or simply put check the websites from where the links are coming. It is important because the backlinks are only worth if the source websites are credible, trustworthy and secured with SSL. The analysis of backlink source website is also taken into the account that’s why we are adding this factor to the SEO audit checklist.
E. Anchor Text
We all know that links make a great difference in the SEO results but do you know the optimization of the anchor text is also essential to enhance the value of SEO. The anchor text used must be relevant to the page which it is redirecting to, otherwise it will have a negative impact on website ranking.
Apart from this, you can also put the targeted keyword in the anchor text of a link that you are getting from the other website. This will help strengthening your targeted keyword as well as help to rank your web page or blog for the specific keyword. This is one of the practices which is used to upgrade the SEO results. So you should take it into consideration while creating the SEO audit checklist.
SEO is not everyone’s cup of tea, right? To achieve success in SEO is difficult. A lot of strategies, efforts, hard work & time is required to top the list in Search Engine Result Pages. And when it is achieved, it takes a lot more efforts to sustain the same ranking.
You need to practice the SEO auditing in your regular SEO efforts to keep it going well. You shouldn’t let your SEO techniques go outdated and for that you need to keep checking every element that can ruin the effectiveness of SEO. Take every factor mentioned above in the SEO audit checklist and get every possibility out of getting unsatisfactory SEO results.
Go for SEO auditing to ensure unbelievable results out of SEO in every situation. Address every problem area at the initial stage by timely working on SEO audit checklist and attain commendable results.