How to Audit Your Website to Maximize SEO Performance

Are you happy with your website’s current SEO? If not, it may be time to perform an SEO audit.

A site audit will help you take a close look at your site architecture and see where there are potential improvements to be made in terms of search engine optimization. In this blog post, we will show you how to audit your website for SEO purposes.

What is an SEO audit?

An SEO audit is a process for assessing your website’s compliance with search engine optimization best practices. The goal is to identify any potential issues that could be holding your website back from achieving its full potential. 

There are two types of SEO audits: technical and content-focused. A technical SEO audit focuses on your website’s code and structure and identifies any issues that could be preventing search engines from indexing or ranking your site. Content-focused SEO audits examine your website’s text, images, and videos and assess whether your content is optimised for the keywords you’re targeting. 

Performing a manual google search

If you’re like most business owners, you know that SEO is important but you may not know where to start when it comes to auditing your own website. We’ll walk you through how to perform a manual Google search for an SEO audit.

Enter your website’s URL

The first step is to enter your website’s URL into the Google search bar. Once you hit enter, you should see your website listed as the first result. If you don’t, that’s an indication that your website’s SEO needs some work.

Check Your title tag

Your title tag is the text that appears in the search results when someone enters a query related to your website. A good title tag will be descriptive and accurate, and it should include your target keyword. To check your title tag, simply hover over your listing in the search results and look at the text that appears. If it’s not what you were expecting, that’s an indication that you need to revisit your title tag and make sure it’s optimized for SEO.

Check your meta description

Your meta description is the short description of your website that appears beneath your listing in the search results. Like your title tag, your meta description should be accurate and descriptive, and it should include your target keyword. To check your meta description, simply hover over your listing in the search results and look at the text that appears beneath your title tag. If it’s not what you were expecting, that may be why you’re not getting as many clicks from the search results as you could be.

Make sure only one version of your site is searchable

One way to do this is to use what’s called a “canonical” tag. This is a piece of code that tells Google which version of your site is the preferred one and you add the canonical tag to the head of your HTML code.

The second way is to set up what’s called a “301 redirect.” This tells Google that the preferred version of your site is located at a different URL than the one being requested. For example, if someone tries to go to www.example.com/old-page, they will be redirected to www.example.com/new-page.

Leverage your analytics and compare site metrics

Both Google Analytics and Google Search Console are incredibly powerful on their own. But when used together, they can give you an even deeper understanding of your website and your users.

Here’s how to leverage both Google Analytics and Google Console for better business insights.

Compare site metrics

Comparing site metrics helps you identify trends and patterns that you might not have noticed otherwise.

For example, let’s say you want to track the number of people who visit your site from different countries. With Google Analytics, you can see how many visitors you have from each country. But with Google Console, you can also see how fast your website loads in each country. This information can help you identify areas where your website needs improvement. 

Or let’s say you want to track the number of people who visit your site from different browsers. With Google Analytics, you can see which browsers are most popular among your visitors. But with Google Console, you can also see which browsers are most compatible with your website’s code. This information can help you make decisions about which browsers to support in the future. 

Check the speed of your website

One way to check your site speed is to use Google’s PageSpeed Insights tool.

To use it, just enter your URL into the tool and click “Analyze.” PageSpeed Insights will then give you a score for your mobile and desktop versions of your site, as well as tips on how to improve it. 

Here are a few general tips for improving your website’s speed:

  • Optimize images by reducing their file size
  • Minimize HTTP requests by consolidating files
  • Use caching to reduce the time needed to load pages
  • Minimize code by using efficient coding techniques
  • Reduce redirects that slow down web page loading times
  • Enable compression to reduce the size of files that are sent from your server 

Manage your internal and external links

Here we will discuss managing both internal and external links.

Internal Links

Internal links are those that connect one page on your website to another page on your website. These are important for a few reasons. First, they help search engines understand the structure of your website and index your pages accordingly. Second, they help users navigate your website more easily. Finally, they help spread link equity (i.e., ranking power) around your website, which can help all of your pages rank higher on search engine results pages (SERPs).

External Links

External links are those that connect your website to another website and are important for a few reasons. First, they show Google and other search engines that your site is credible, and has high-quality content since other websites are linking to it. Second, they provide users with additional resources that may be helpful or interesting to them. Finally, they can also help spread link equity around the internet, which can help your website rank higher in the SERPs.

One thing to keep in mind is that broken links or links to duplicate content can drive visitors away from your site. You can use tools like Google Search Console to audit internal links or a site audit tool like Screaming Frog.

Conduct on-page SEO checks

Here is a checklist of on-page SEO checks to help you get started:

Header Tags (H1-H6)

Header tags are HTML tags used to denote headings and subheadings on a webpage and range from H1 (most important heading) to H6 (least important heading). Header tags are important for both users and search engines because they help break up content and make it easy to scan.

Images 

Images are an important part of any website because they help break up text and make a site more visually appealing. However, they also play a role in on-page SEO because you can optimize them with keywords. When auditing images on your site, be sure to check that all images have descriptive ALT text that includes relevant keywords. 

SSL Certificate 

An SSL certificate is a digital certificate that encrypts information sent from a user’s browser to a website’s server. It helps protect sensitive information like credit card numbers and login credentials from being intercepted by hackers. As part of your audit, be sure to check that your site has an SSL certificate and that it’s valid. 

Check Mobile-Friendly Issues

If you’re not sure whether your website is mobile-friendly or not, don’t worry. Here are some of the most common mobile-friendly issues and how to address them.

Text that is too small to read

If your text is too small, users will have to zoom in to read it, which makes for a frustrating user experience. 

The fix: Make sure your text is large enough to read without zooming. You can also use responsive design techniques to ensure that your text scales appropriately on different screen sizes.

Links that are too close together

Another common issue is links that are placed too close together. On a desktop computer, this might not be an issue—but on a mobile device with a smaller screen, it can be very difficult for users to accurately tap the link they want. 

The fix: Make sure there is enough space between each link so that users can easily tap the one they want without accidentally tapping another one. A good rule of thumb is to use a minimum spacing of 32px between links.

Images that are not sized correctly

Images are an important part of any website, but if they’re not sized correctly, they can cause problems on mobile devices.

The fix: Make sure all of your images are sized correctly before uploading them to your website. If you’re not sure how big they should be, you can use a tool like Photoshop to resize them. Once you’ve resized your images, upload them to your website and test them on different screen sizes to make sure they look good at different resolutions.

Canonicals and href lang tags

Here is what canonicals and href lang tags are, how they’re used, and why they’re important for SEO.

Canonicals

A canonical is an HTML element that tells search engines which version of a given page should be indexed. For example, if you have a website with both www and non-www versions (e.g., www.example.com and example.com), a canonical can be used to tell search engines that the www version is the preferred version to index.

If search engines index multiple versions of the same page, it can hurt your SEO because it dilutes the link equity of the page (i.e., the value that search engines place on links to that page). By using canonicals, you can avoid this issue by telling search engines which version of the page to index.

Href Lang Tags

Href language tags are HTML elements that tell search engines what language a given page is written in. For example, if you have a website in both English and French, you would use href lang tags to tell search engines which version of the page is in English and which version is in French.

Href lang tags are important for SEO because they help ensure that your website’s content is properly indexed by search engines. If your website’s content is not properly indexed, it can hurt your SEO because search engines will not be able to understand it and will therefore not rank it as highly in their results pages.

Summary

Performing a thorough SEO audit on your website is essential for ensuring it is properly optimized to rank highly in search engine results pages. From leveraging Google Search and conducting on-page SEO checks to managing internal and external links, there are many factors to consider when optimizing your website for SEO. By taking the time to properly audit your website for SEO, you can ensure it is optimized correctly and increase its visibility in the SERPs.

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