Technical SEO Audit Checklist 2020: How to Do Website SEO Audit?
SEO Audit Checklist To Do Website Technical SEO Audit for Better SEO Rankings in 2020
Do you often complain about the unstable performance of your website? Audit your website from an SEO point of view to find out what are the factors that are preventing your growth. Whether it is Google penalty or any other factors with website audit you will be able to find out mistakes or missing points. Consult an SEO expert to audit website. They will perform technical SEO audits as per the SEO audit checklist in 2020.
Technical SEO audit is not all about finding flaws and limitations of the website, but it offers long term benefits to your business and website performance. To perform a technical SEO audit one must have good knowledge of technical SEO. You can check example SEO report and SEO checklists before website audit.
You can audit a website without any professional assistance as well. Performing audit for your website is not that easy, but here we are sharing factors that could make SEO audit easy for your website.
How to do Technical SEO audit?
- Is Indexing of a Zombie Page is Good for SEO?
- Is Your Website Mobile Friendly?
- Is Google Indexing More Than One Version of Your Website?
- Take Speed Test of Website
- Is Google Indexing All the Relevant Pages?
- Improve on-Page SEO
- Keyword Analysis
- Use audit tools
- Competitor Analysis
- Keyword Rank Tracking
- Backlink Analysis
- Fix Broken Links
- The Content Has To Be Outstanding
- Make a Website Structure Simple
- Rewrite Duplicate Meta Tags
- Write Content-Rich and Popular Post
- Focus on Internal Links
- Optimize for Featured Snippets
- Google Analytics SEO Metrics
1. Is indexing of a zombie page is good for SEO?
The answer is no. Indexing pages that do not serve relevant information or are outdated can make SEO more difficult. It is suggested to delete zombie pages and stop their indexing it will make your SEO effort more relevant.
You can prevent indexing of pages that no longer provides relevant content like Archive, search page, tags ad category pages and make your SEO effort more relevant. Removing zombie pages will improve organic traffic. So if you have indexed old pages to make the website more content-rich then it is suggested to remove irrelevant pages and get more organic traffic.
2. Is your website mobile-Friendly:
Since the majority of the internet users are now relying on Smartphone for accessing internet and browsing websites, so it has become essential to have a mobile-friendly website. You would be surprised to know, but more than 60% of searches are made from mobile devices and now Google has also launched a mobile-first algorithm. You can check online using a tool whether your website is mobile-friendly or not. It would suggest recommendations to make the website more user-friendly that would ultimately improve website performance.
3. Is Google indexing more than one version of your website?
There are chances that Google might be indexing different versions of your website. A website can have different versions for example:
Though for the common users it is the same for Google bot they are different. Check your website online and if you find such an issue present on your website. Fixing it easier, all you have to do is put redirection and you will find your visitors at the right version of the website.
4. Take the speed test of a website:
A website with fast loading speed ranks better and when everyone is browsing the website through a mobile it is becoming more crucial to have a website with fast loading. Take a loading test for the website and if the website takes a longer time, then it is suggested to check the code part to find the reason. Apart from coding, crunching the size of images will also improve the load speed and make sure your hosting plan suits your website requirement. Sometimes the website owner chooses a cheap hosting plan to save money, but spending on the good hosting plan will improve the website’s speed and performance. This is one of the best features of a good website.
5. Is Google indexing all the relevant pages?
While performing site auditing consider how many pages of a website are indexed by google and how many pages are left. The pages you don’t want to get indexed can be freed from getting indexed by adding robots.txt or NOINDEX Tag, but if you have accidentally put any of these tags on the page that you want to get indexed then check the codes.
6. Improve on-Page SEO:
The technical SEO audit is incomplete unless it focuses on the on-page SEO of a website. Target meta tags, keyword density, and relevancy. A well-placed on-page SEO can diminish the demand for rigorous backlinking. Focus on primary keywords and try to include them in meta title and descriptions. Try to use the primary keyword within 100 words. Focus on keywords that are highly relevant to your website and visitors and put them at the relevant page at relevant place and see the difference.
On-Page SEO Factors
- Use of Meta Robots tag: This HTML Tag is used in between the <head> code on a page. This tag is used to give specific instructions to search engines on how to translate the page’s content.
Example, <meta name=”robots” content=”noindex”>
Using this tag helps search engines to know about the pages that are not to be indexed. You can also use this tag for index or noindex images, pages & follow or nofollow links on a webpage.
- Page source Meta Tags: The page source Meta tag is the information that is displayed in the search engine result pages by the search engines. The Meta tags define your webpage and have a major impact on the user as they click on any web page on the basis of the Meta tags. Meta tags act as a descriptor as it tells the user what content they can expect when they click on the resulting link.
Meta tags do not have a direct impact on the ranking, but they increase the search engine result pages Click through Rate. You can view the source code of your webpage and check the <title> <description> in the head tag.
- Page Heading tags: Page heading <h1> tag is found at the top of the webpage and displays the title of the page. H1 can be different from the <title> tag of the webpage.
There should be only one H1 tag on each webpage and the rest of the sub-heads can be named under <h2>, <h3>, <h4>, and more.
The <h1> tag is important to be present on a web page as it tells the search engine about the important content on the webpage.
- XML Sitemap: An XML Sitemap file helps search engines to crawl and understand your website in a better way. XML Sitemap helps in improving the indexation of your website. You can set a “crawl budget” i.e. define the most important web page on your website.
- Use of Alt Tags for images: Search engines are unable to crawl the images and understand what the image is and deliver it in the search queries without the use of alt tags.
When the alt text will be applied, it will appear at its place even when the image is unable to open and provides a description of the image.
- Check custom 404 Page: Sometimes deleting content from the site is best for you. If this is the case then you should make a custom 404 error pages as this helps the user & search engine to know that the page has been removed from the site.
- 302 Redirects: It tells the search engine that the page has been moved temporarily. It prevents the new URL from getting indexed by Google as Google believes that at some point you will revert back to the redirected URL.
7. Keyword analysis:
keywords analysis is a significant part of the website audit as it is the keyword selection that determines the website’s performance. It is very important to target the right keywords. A well-implemented website audit will help in targeting high-value keywords.
8. Use audit tools:
Many SEO tools can make website audit easier for your site auditing will help in targeting the right keywords. Few keywords are easy to target and achieve, whereas few are hard to crack, the SEO audit helps in determining which set of keywords to target and what changes to make in on-page to achieve the result. These audit tools are comprehensive and check all the facts.
9. Competitor analysis:
When you wish to stay in the market, then it is not all about you, but you have to focus on your competitors as well. Learn from their mistakes and drawbacks and improve your website accordingly.
10. Keyword rank tracking:
Track keyword ranking in search engine results pages through a keyword ranking tool. There are tools like SEM Rush that not just track the keyword ranking one wants to check, but it also finds keywords that the website rank for.
The performance and ranking of a website depend on many factors and backlinks still plays a crucial role in determining a website’s performance and ranking in SERP. Analyze backlink profile using the backlink analysis tool to find out backlink profile, domains and domain authority. A website with more number of quality backlinks performs better. It is suggested not to get backlinks from spammy websites as it might lower the website’s reputation. There are tracker tools that could give a complete backlink profile, including the website’s reputation.
SEO audit is incomplete unless broken links are tracked and fixed. Broken links are bad for user’s as well as for the website. There are tools for checking broken links, find all the broken links, fix them and get all the page indexed by Google.
13. The Content has to be outstanding:
It is the content that speaks for your business and connects with the online users. The rule is simple, write short, informative content. Break them into small paragraphs, use bullets and pointers to make the content engaging and impressive. The content has to be a perfect blend of information, keywords, and presentation. If you can align these three factors, then, it becomes easier to connect with the users. Add tips, tricks, examples, and images to make content more engaging.
14. Make a website structure simple:
Keep your website structure simple, and organized as it is crucial from SEO point as well. It is the site structure that helps in indexing all the pages. If the website structure is bulky or messy then there are chances of getting lost. A clean, simple and inflow architecture helps search engine in determining the relevancy of the web pages as well. Keep your website structure flat. The treelike structure supporting smooth navigation will not only improve the user’s experience, but also help search engines in indexing pages as well. Put internal links wisely to keep the website structure, smooth and connected.
while exploring different aspects of a website for audit don’t forget to pay attention to duplicate meta tags. As these tags have the potential to influence a website’s performance and user’s experience. Find and replace duplicate meta content with unique and relevant content and experience the difference in the website’s performance.
16. Write content-Rich and popular post:
if you want Google to get aware of the changes that you have made in a website then you have to catch its attention and what else could be more rewarding than writing a skyscraper post. It would help Google in finding and indexing the changes that one has made on a website. One can easily check the change in crawl stats on the day when something new is posted on a website. The more time one invested in creating a skyscraper post the better return they get. Adding resources relevant to the topics and enriching it with your unique content will give the skyscraper effect. The more information one provides the better result they will experience. Promote your post at different platforms, get traffic. The more exposure the post gets the better benefits it offers for your website.
If your concern is to audit website for SEO purpose, then focus on internal links as well. It is one of the most for granted aspect of the SEO that needs to be restored. Connect high relevant page with each other. You can skip dead pages from linking to make the link structure more relevant.
18. Optimize for Featured Snippets:
Optimizing for featured snippets can dramatically improve the website’s performance. Optimize the content for the mobile, and you will experience a drastic improvement in organic traffic.
19. Google Analytics SEO Metrics
- Organic Traffic: Organic traffic is the traffic that you earn for your website from appearing on search engine result pages without paying for any placement on the top pages. It’s important to keep an eye on your overall organic traffic as this will help you to know how many visitors are coming to your website. You must track organic traffic by landing page and by location. Also know about the ways to drive more traffic to your website.
- Traffic Source: You advertise on a number of platforms. Don’t you wish to know which platform works best?
Now you can know about it with the Traffic Source feature in Google Analytics. In today’s era, business owners have multiple ways to make people interested in their business through paid advertising, E-mail marketing, and Social Media Marketing.
There is no specific combination that you can use to attract visitors to your website as it depends on the nature of your industry and audience. But it helps in knowing how your campaigns are performing in terms of your website traffic. Are they getting enough people visiting on your webpage. Are visitors spending enough time on the landing pages?
One of the most important Google Analytics Metrics is Traffic Source. It shows the source of the traffic coming to your website. This helps in understanding the importance of sources that are providing the most relevant traffic to your website.
- Bounce Rate: Bounce rate is defined as the number of visitors who visited your website but exited it without browsing any other webpage of your website. It is measured as a total percentage of visitors. The bounce rate can be calculated by dividing the total number of one-page visits to the total number of entrance visits.
If you see that you have a high bounce rate on your website that means you need to do some on-site work to keep people engaged and know about the reasons for high bounce rate.
You must check the bounce rate by landing page as it will help you in knowing which landing pages are not responding well and you need to work on them. Also, you can know about the landing pages which are attracting and engaging visitors to the website.
- Conversion Rate: Organic traffic only gets people to the website, it does not mean that you have made the sale. This is the reason why you must measure the conversion rate of your website as well.
You need to track the average conversion rate from the organic traffic of your website. In this way, you will get an idea of how well your website is appealing to the visitors who arrive from the search results to your website.
You may want to know about the conversion rates by landing page, location, browser or device. This way it will help you to know about a page that has a higher conversion rate, which location has higher conversion rates and from which device people are converting into your customer. After analyzing all the data, you can work on the points that you need to focus on.
- Average Time Spent: Due to online digital platforms, business owners are not able to interact with the people and know about their preferences like they used to do before. This is the main reason why Google Analytics Metrics are very helpful in today’s time. This metric shows the average time spent by the visitor on the website. If you see a lower indication then you need to work on the content of the webpage to make it more engaging and which fits in your audience’s interest.
- Average Pages per Visit: This metric from Google Analytics shows the average pages visited by the user on the website. In other words, it shows how many pages on average a visitor navigates before making a purchase or leaving the website. If you analyze the data well, it can help you in designing the right navigation structure for your website.
- Top Pages: The top page metric shows how your website pages are performing in terms of traffic, bounce rate, average time spent, etc. In this way, you can analyze what pages are working well for you and optimize those which are not.
- Exit Pages: The Exit page metric shows which page caused most of your traffic to leave the website be it your home page, service page or any product page. If you see a trend, you need to refresh the content for those pages and optimize it well.
- Unique Users vs. Returning Users: Here applies the rule of 80/20. It is a proven fact that 80% of your results come from 20% of the efforts that you have made. This fact fits well in business too where 80% of the business comes from only 20% of your customers. This is why you must retain your old customers as it is much easier than converting a new customer. Google Analytics metrics have covered this point as well and you can check how many of your website visitors are new and how many of them are returning users.
- User Behaviour Flow: This Google Analytics metric shows the behaviour of the visitor, how the users are navigating within your website starting from the page they enter into the website to the page they last visited before leaving the website.
This data will help you in making better marketing decisions that will be helpful in the future.
- Click-through-rate (CTR): Google Search Console shows the Search Analytics Report in which you can check the average percentage of visitors who clicked on your website link after seeing that in the search result pages. This percentage is known as Click-through-rate (CTR). This is one of the most important points to be paid attention to. It not only tells you about the pages that are performing well but also about how much your content appeals to the user. If the user will like your content in the search result pages, he will click on the link.
- Site Speed: Google Analytics played an important role in analyzing each and every information that you need to know about your website. These metric highlights how each of your webpages are performing in terms of loading speed.
It is very important for a better user experience that a website loads quickly. This metric shows the pages which have slow loading speed and how to fix them. Some fixes are easy to make but are more technical in nature.